BWW Previews: INNOVOCATIVE THEATRE BRINGS A SHAYNA MAIDEL, STORY OF FAMILY REUNITING AFTER HOLOCAUST to Stageworks Theatre
In a country wrought with divisiveness, Innovocative Theatre is bringing A Shayna Maidel by Barbara Lebow to stage at Stageworks on January 10 - 19.
Directed by Staci Sabarsky, starring Larry Corwin, Kristina Kourkoulos, Kayla Witoshynsky, Thomas Brown, Michele McCarty, and Sunshine Hughes, A Shayna Maidel is a tale of a Jewish family picking up the pieces of their lives and coming together, despite each person having traveled a different life path to be reunited after World War II in 1946.
"It's a terrific part for an actor and the audience too," Larry described his role as the father of two daughters, one assimilated into the American culture in New York, the other left behind in Poland, the only family survivor of the Holocaust. "There are so many layers going on in this. He is not an easy person to be a child of. It's a wonderful, complicated character. These three people react so differently to their loss and feelings of remorse and everything that has happened to them. Yet, in the end, they learn to be a family.
"It's a perfect time to be bringing back works that deal with the Holocaust - in this day and age, where Holocaust denial seems to have come back into acceptance and hatred in general. This shows the kind of consequences these things can have. It's a beautiful piece. You will learn how this affected these characters are, but still, go home feeling you saw a wonderful play."
When Staci first read the script, she felt a connection to her parents' own immigration to America.
"I felt a connection that I thought others could relate to. It's about an estranged family trying to bond together again. This family is going to survive and make it through this. They are resilient. It's hopeful. It ends on a hopeful note."
Despite taking place in 1946, the emotional, moving message of A Shayna Maidel's is still very relevant, dealing with the Holocaust and very lightly, with immigration.
"Jewish people are still discriminated against today. Laws are dividing the country as to how immigration should be handled," said Staci. "Relying on your family is an important message of the play. With family, you can move forward, forgive and love one another again, move on with life despite what you might have been through."
A Shayna Maidel runs January 10 - 19 at Stageworks Theatre, 1120 East Kennedy Blvd. Two talkbacks are scheduled after Sunday matinees. To learn more or to purchase tickets, visit https://innovocativetheatre.org/up-next.