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WAITING FOR GODOT in Yiddish to be Presented at the Royal Dramatic Theatre

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Shane Baker’s landmark Yiddish translation of Samuel Beckett’s existential masterpiece will be presented on November 13th and 14th.

WAITING FOR GODOT in Yiddish to be Presented at the Royal Dramatic Theatre

The Congress for Jewish Culture has been commissioned to present director Moshe Yassur's critically acclaimed 2013 Off-Broadway Yiddish language staging of WAITING FOR GODOT at the prestigious Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm, Sweden next month.

Shane Baker's landmark Yiddish translation of Samuel Beckett's existential masterpiece will be presented on November 13th and 14th. A third performance has just been added as the scheduled two-performance engagement sold out shortly after tickets went on sale. This marks the first ever Yiddish language production to appear at Sweden's premiere dramatic venue.

WAITING FOR GODOT will star Michael Wex as Estragon and Shane Baker as Vladimir, along with Allen Lewis Rickman, Luzer Twersky and Nicholas Jenkins. The play will be performed in Yiddish with Swedish supertitles.

Michael Wex is a Canadian novelist, playwright, translator, lecturer, performer, and author of books on language and literature. His book BORN TO KVETCH became a New York Times Bestseller in 2005. Shane Baker appeared Off-Broadway in TEVYE SERVED RAW, Everett Quinton's staging of Charles Ludlam's CONQUEST OF THE UNIVERSE OR WHEN QUEENS COLLIDE, in his solo show THE BIG BUPKIS! A COMPLETE GENTILE'S GUIDE TO YIDDISH VAUDEVILLE, GOD OF VENGEANCE, THE ADVENTURES OF HERSHELE OSTROPOLYER, and THE MEGILE OF Itzik Manger. Allen Lewis Rickman played Velvel in the Coen Brothers' hit film A SERIOUS MAN. TV appearances include "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel" (as Red Skelton), Barry Levinson's Emmy-winning "You Don't Know Jack," and a recurring role on HBO's "Boardwalk Empire." His NY stage credits include Broadway's RELATIVELY SPEAKING and MACK & MABEL at Encores! Luzer Twersky made his Off-Broadway debut in GOD OF VENGEANCE. His films include ONE OF US and FELIX AND MEIRA (Best Actor Award, Torino Film Festival), and he has appeared on TV's "High Maintenance" and "Transparent." Young Nicholas Jenkins reprises the role he played in this production in 2013 and 2014 Off-Broadway, as well as its subsequent production in Enniskillen, Ireland.

WAITING FOR GODOT (VARTN AF GODOT) will be the first ever Yiddish production in Stockholm's Royal Dramatic Theatre, Sweden's national stage for spoken drama founded in 1788. Those who have come up through its ranks include Greta Garbo, Ingrid Bergman, Max Von Sydow, Bibi Andersson, and Ingmar Bergman. Housed in a spectacular Art Nouveau building, the Royal Dramatic Theatre also introduced August Strindberg's late dramatic works.

Yiddish has surprisingly deep and broad roots in Sweden, which has had a significant Jewish population since the late 18th century. During World War II, Sweden provided refuge for almost the entire Jewish population of Denmark. After the war, thousands of Eastern European Yiddish speaking Jews arrived in or passed through Sweden, making a significant impact on the country.

Sweden is home to a number of Jewish and Yiddish cultural organizations, including the Sveriges Jiddishförbund (League for Yiddish) and Judisk kultur i Sverige (Jewish Culture in Sweden), who are the Swedish producers of this production in partnership with the Royal Dramatic Theatre.

In 1999, Yiddish was proclaimed one of five official minority languages in Sweden. Today, Sweden has the distinction of supporting a lively Yiddish publishing and literary scene, in large part due to government support and official recognition of the language.

Director Moshe Yassur states, "We are thrilled to bring our Yiddish GODOT to Sweden. WAITING FOR GODOT holds special resonance for refugees, those stuck between here and there, waiting for redemption which may or may not come. Whether or not they made a home there, Sweden played a substantial role in the post-war journey of so many Jewish refugees, making the Swedish debut of this GODOT especially poignant." A veteran of both the Yiddish and modern theatre, Yassur was born in Iasi, Romania (the cradle of the Yiddish theatre). He worked for several years with Jean-Marie Serreau at the Théatre de Babylone in Paris, taking part often as assistant director in several first productions of Beckett and Ionesco. In New York Moshe Yassur was a protégé of Woody King Jr., directing at the New Federal Theatre, and he helmed acclaimed Off-Broadway productions of DEATH OF A SALESMAN and RHINOCEROS.

WAITING FOR GODOT will be performed at the Royal Dramatic Theatre on Saturday, November 13 at 7 pm and Sunday, November 14 at 1 & 6 pm. For more information, visit www.dramaten.se/en/repertoire/waiting-for-godot.


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