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Cast Announced For the Festival of New Jewish Plays

The festival runs November 30 and December 1 at the JCC.

Cast Announced For the Festival of New Jewish Plays

The Jewish Plays Project has announced casting for the Festival of New Jewish Plays, running November 30 and December 1 at the JCC.

These readings will feature actors Joyce Cohen (Independence Day), Nadia Diamond (Cassie Goes to Congress), Grant Harrison (The Good Fight), Rachel Caplan (FBI), Max Wolkowitz (FBI), Amaya Press (Half Life), Eva Kaminsky (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child), Kate Levy (Succession), Laura Esterman (I'm Revolting), Jacob Goodhart (The Affair), Alaina Kai Chester (Flex at Humana), Mya Ison (Sweeney Todd at Playmakers Rep), Annie Fox (The Wolves at McCarter), and Luis Moreno (Power III: Raising Kanan). Debbie Bernstein (Queering) reads stage directions. Full cast information and bios are available online at jewishplaysproject.org/festival.

The Festival of New Jewish Plays marks the JPP's return to in-person programming in New York City. The two-day festival includes the winning plays of the 2020, 2021, and 2022 National Jewish Playwriting Contests in the JPP's signature Reading+ format (script-in-hand readings with targeted design support).

"What a joy to return to New York with this incredible company of exciting, diverse artists," says Artistic Director David Winitsky. "All of them are dedicated to the work of supporting new Jewish plays, and giving our audiences a stellar night at the theater."

The three plays and creative teams are:

  • OKLAHOMA SAMOVAR by Alice Eve Cohen, directed by Eric Nightengale: In 1887, two Latvian teenagers flee the Russian army and become the only Jews in the Oklahoma Land Run. A century later, their daughter reinvents their story, aided by ghosts, blintzes and strong Russian tea.
    • Wednesday, November 30 at 7 pm. Tickets here.
    • Winner of the 10th Jewish Playwriting Contest (2021)
    • Cast: Rachel Caplan, Joyce Cohen, Nadia Diamond, Grant Harrison, Amaya Press, and Max Wolkowitz
  • MADELEINES by Bess Welden, directed by Annette Jolles: Spiced with poetry, Yiddish, and Spanish, Madeleines is about a family of Jewish women grappling with how to love each other through shared grief and the solace of baking.
    • Thursday, December 1 at 1 pm. Tickets here.
    • Winner of the 11th Jewish Playwriting Contest (2022)
    • Cast: Laura Esterman, Eva Kaminksy, and Kate Levy
  • A MOVING PICTURE by Jennie Berman Eng, directed by Rebecca S'manga Frank: An NYU student screenplay about a WWII Mercedes Benz labor camp collides with a legendary professor and the dark secret of his Hollywood success.

The reading of Berman Eng's A Moving Picture on December 1st will be followed by a talkback co-presented by The Workshop, North America's first arts fellowship centering the work of JOCISM (Jews of Color, Jewish-Indigenous, Sephardi & Mizrahi) artists & culture-makers, that will focus on the dynamic between the Holocaust, Jewish identity, and race. The talkback will be moderated by theater artist and Rabbi Kendell Pinkney. Learn more about The Workshop at theworkshopny.com.

All three readings are Pay What You Wish. Reservations are required. For full information and to purchase tickets, visit jewishplaysproject.org/festival.



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