National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene Presents THE GOLEM
Following the break-out success of Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish, nominated for four Lucille Lortel Awards, The National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene (NYTF) will present a dramatic reading of H. Leivick's 1921 retelling of The Golem, the classic story of the Golem of Prague, which delves in the world of mysticism as a mediation on the effect of violence on the Jewish soul. It will be performed on Tuesday, May 7 at 7:30 pm at the Museum of Jewish Heritage A Living Memorial to the Holocaust, Edmond J. Safra Plaza, 36 Battery Place, NYC. Tickets are free at www.nytf.org.
The reading is the first in NYTF's season of Spiritual Resistance, which will feature artistic and theatrical works that explore themes of struggle against oppression. The programming will provide artistic expression concurrent to the exhibition Auschwitz: Not long ago. Not far away. being presented at the Museum of Jewish Heritage A Living Memorial to the Holocaust.
H. Leivick's The Golem is among the most important works of Yiddish theatre, tracing the roots of anti-Semitism and the blood libel that has been the pretext for anti-Semitism for centuries. Set in seventeenth-century Prague just before Passover, The Golem tells the story of a Jewish community that has experienced pogroms at the hands of Christians during their holy season. The legendary wonder-working Rabbi, known as the Maharel, creates a Golem to protect the Jewish community from further persecution. But the Golem's innate violence turns against the community, Jews and gentiles alike, and the creature must be destroyed. The performance will be in Yiddish, with English subtitles.
The National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene's mission is to preserve and perform the most important works of Yiddish theatre. The Golem is a masterpiece that has not been publicly read in Yiddish for many decades. The themes, including the always-destructive nature of violence, are relevant and important. Audiences deserve to hear its poetry in the original language, said Artistic Director Zalmen Mlotek.
The great conundrum at the heart of this play is that, when Jews do not take action to thwart anti-Semitic actions, we become the victims of violence, yet when we do employ violence, we are eroding the central Jewish tenet: that we endure the trials of this world as we work towards our own perfection and patiently await redemption, said Associate Artistic Director Motl Didner.
Tickets are also on sale for a new, award-winning work, When Blood Ran Red, chronicling the darkest era in the Soviet Union, when former wartime heroes of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee were persecuted as enemies of the state for daring to report on the truth of the Holocaust in the German-occupied East. When Blood Ran Red is a winner of the NYTF David and Clare Rosen Memorial Play contest. This production-in-development will be performed in English. Performances are on Sunday, June 16 at 2 pm and 6 pm. Tickets are $25.
The Museum of Jewish Heritage A Living Memorial to the Holocaust will present the most comprehensive exhibition about Auschwitz ever seen in North America, Auschwitz: Not long ago. Not far away. from May 8, 2019 January 3, 2020. (Tickets are available now at auschwitz.nyc.) The exhibition features more than 700 original objects and photographs from over 20 international institutions, including rare artifacts. As visitors walk through the 20 thematic galleries, they will see the development of Nazi ideology and the transformation of Auschwitz from an ordinary Polish town known as O wi cim to the most significant Nazi site of the Holocaust at which ca. 1 million Jews, and tens of thousands of others, were murdered. This exhibition was produced in partnership with the international exhibition firm Musealia and the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland.
Now celebrating its 104th season, Tony Award-nominated and Drama Desk Award-winning National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene (NYTF) is the longest consecutively producing theatre in the US and the world's oldest continuously operating Yiddish theatre company. NYTF is in residence at the Museum of Jewish Heritage A Living Memorial to the Holocaust. Under the artistic direction of Zalmen Mlotek, NYTF is dedicated to creating a living legacy through the arts, connecting generations and bridging communities. NYTF aims to bring history to life by reviving and restoring lost and forgotten work, commissioning new work, and adapting pre-existing work for the 21st Century. Serving a diverse audience comprised of performing arts patrons, cultural enthusiasts, Yiddish-language aficionados and the general public, the company presents plays, musicals, concerts, lectures, interactive educational workshops and community-building activities in English and Yiddish, with English and Russian supertitles accompanying performances. NYTF provides access to a century-old cultural legacy and inspires the imaginations of the next generation to contribute to this valuable body of work.
More information can be found at www.NYTF.org.