The Public Stages One Night Only Performance of LOOKING FOR EUROPE

The Public Stages One Night Only Performance of LOOKING FOR EUROPE

The Public Theater has announced a special one-night-only performance of LOOKING FOR EUROPE, written and performed by philosopher, activist, and filmmaker Bernard-Henri Le?vy. For more than four decades, Le?vy has been a singular figure on the world stage and one of the great moral voices of our time. This timely event will share one Frenchman's views addressing America's crisis of democracy and its retreating role on the global stage, and will take place on Monday, November 5 at 8:00PM in the Anspacher Theater.

"Bernard-Henri Le?vy is one of the most distinguished philosophers in Europe, a deeply provocative thinker, and one of Europe's most fierce defenders," said Artistic Director Oskar Eustis. "We are honored to host him at The Public."

Public Theater Partner, Public Supporter, and Member tickets are available now, priced at $15. Full price tickets, starting at $20, are now available by calling (212) 967-7555, visiting, or in person at the Taub Box Office at The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street.

LOOKING FOR EUROPE, under the title Hotel Europe, was originally written to be performed on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Sarajevo, an event that set in motion the First World War and led to the dissolution of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The play premiered in Sarajevo on June 27, 2014 with the acclaimed French actor Jacques Weber. It travelled to the renowned Teatro La Fenice in Venice, and later, to the The?a?tre de l'Atelier in Paris for the Fall 2014 season. In 2015, Bernard-Henri Le?vy played the role at the Odessa National Opera House, the Kiev National Opera House, the Lviv National Opera Theater, and at the Festival dei 2mondi in Spoleto. He performed an adaptation, Last Exit Before Brexit, in June 2018 at London's Cadogan Hall.

For the performance at The Public, LOOKING FOR EUROPE has been entirely rewritten to address America's crisis of democracy and its retreating role on the global stage. It is a one man show where a French writer recalls, without nostalgia but with ardor, the America he loves. He remembers his discovery of Barack Obama, the death of Ambassador Pamela Harriman, and an encounter with Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. He brings back on stage the ghosts of writers he once knew and admired such as Philip Roth, Norman Mailer, and Jim Harrison. And of course, he can't help cursing the bad shepherds that are stealing America's soul and driving it to perdition.

The evening of November 5, 2018, a man is confined to his hotel room just hours before he is due to deliver a speech the evening before the United States midterm Congressional elections to a group of American activists. The setting happens to be Sarajevo, the city which 25 years earlier, America and Europe sacrificed for four years as it fell to the forces of Serbia. The subject of the speech is slated to be an ode to Europe and to its transatlantic brotherhood with America. But as the protagonist begins to draft the discourse, he experiences a severe case of intellectual impotency. He feels devastated by the resurgence, on both sides of the Atlantic, of nationalism, populism, and anti-Semitism. He is enraged by the West's retreat on the global stage just as illiberal leaders, like Erdo?an and Putin, are seizing opportunities to destabilize and wreak havoc on the geopolitical order. What follows is a speech within a speech, a Joyce-like stream of consciousness, a tottering at the post-modern abyss, and a passionate plea for American values and leadership.

BERNARD-HENRI LÉVY (Writer and Performer) is a philosopher, activist, and filmmaker. Among his dozens of books are The Empire and the Five Kings (forthcoming from Henry Holt), American Vertigo, Barbarism with a Human Face, and Who Killed Daniel Pearl? He wrote his first play in 1992. Le jugement dernier (The Last Judgment) was staged by Jean-Louis Martinelli at Paris's The?a?tre de l'Atelier and in 2014, he wrote Hotel Europe. For more than four decades, Le?vy has been a singular figure on the world stage and one of the great moral voices of our time. Active in Bangladesh at the age of 20 and later in Bosnia, Darfur, Libya, Ukraine, and Kurdistan, he has a taste for what he calls "the great rage of things." He has been deeply involved in the fight against terrorism and fanaticism around the world. In the period after September 11th, Lévy spent a year in Afghanistan and Pakistan following the footsteps of the late Wall Street Journal writer Daniel Pearl, whom he describes as one of the greatest heroes of our time. His writing has appeared in a wide range of publications throughout Europe and the United States. He contributes to various outlets in the US (The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Vanity Fair, CNN, Tablet, Daily Beast, Algemeiner, and others) and to Le Point (France), La Stampa (Italy), and El Español(Spain). From Paris, Le?vy directs the literary review La Re?gle du jeu. His films include the documentaries Peshmerga, The Battle of Mosul, The Oath of Tobruk, and Bosna! Le?vy is co-founder of the anti-racist group SOS Racism and has served on diplomatic missions for the French government.

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