Warsaw's Ester Rachel and Ida Kaminska State Jewish Theater to Make First NYC Appearance Since 1980s
The Shalom Foundation and New York's National Yiddish Theater Folksbiene, currently in its historic 100th season, will present The Ester Rachel and Ida Kaminska State Jewish Theater from Warsaw, Poland to New York audiences. This is the first time the Polish Yiddish Theater company, also known as The State Jewish Theater, has toured in North America since the 1980's.
"This is a rare opportunity for New Yorkers to see artists from the only Jewish theater in Poland, which had been the home of the largest Jewish population in Europe and center of Yiddish culture, literature, music, theater and film. We are thrilled to be a part of this historic event." says Zalmen Mlotek, Artistic Director of the National Yiddish Theater Folksbiene.
The visit could not be timelier as it is coming on the heels of the opening of the new Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw. The museum is seen as a major step for Poland in repairing ties to their Jewish past. The State Jewish Theater performed at the opening ceremony of the museum.
The troupe's New York City performance will be on Tuesday, November 18, 7:00pm at The Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place, New York City. Sixteen members will present a gala concert featuring music from their show "Mazel Tov" showcasing popular Yiddish songs and comedic sketches (in the style of the most famous Yiddish comic duo "Dzigan and Shumacher") with English translation supertitles. The concert features an 8-piece orchestra and Zalmen Mlotek will be guest conductor, with guest artist Frank London of The Klezmatics and Michael Winograd. Concurrently there is an exhibition entitled "And I Still See Their Faces: Images of Polish Jews". Box Office 646-437-4202. $20, $15 Folksbiene/Museum of Jewish Heritage members, $10 students. http://www.nytf.org
The New York visit is called Singer's New York and is part of Singer's Warsaw Festival of Jewish Culture (named for Warsaw native and Nobel Prize winning author Isaac Bashevis Singer) created by Golda Tencer and organized by the Shalom Foundation. It is part of a whirlwind tour that includes visits to Mexico City (Nov. 9), LA (Nov. 12), SF (Nov. 13) and Boston (Nov. 16).
Theater troupe members and Polish dignitaries will take part in a book fair at Barnes & Noble at Broadway and 82nd Street in Manhattan on November 18. They will present the children's story "Zlateh the Goat" by beloved author Isaac Bashevis Singer. Readings will take place at 5pm and 7pm.
Concluding their visit to New York, on Thursday November 20, The State Jewish Theater will be presented with the prestigious Jan Karski Spirit Award by the Consul General of Poland at the Consulate located at 233 Madison Avenue in Manhattan. Attendance is by invitation only.
In June 2015, New York's National Yiddish Theater Folksbiene's will launch their own Centennial Celebration called KulturfestNYC, featuring theater performances from around the world as well as concerts, a film festival, symposiums with prominent theatre scholars, nightly Klezkabarets, exhibits, workshops, and a 100 Year Gala. More information at http://www.nytf.org.
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