LACONIA — In observance of Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Winnipesaukee Playhouse is performing "Irena's Vow," a dramatic reading about a Catholic woman in Germany who hid Jews from the Nazis.
The Winni Players, in partnership with Temple B'nai Israel in Laconia will present a "Irena's Vow," at the Laconia Congregational Church on Veterans Square on Saturday at 7 p.m. and again on Sunday at 2 p.m. A third performance has been scheduled for Sunday at 7 p.m. at Temple Adath Yeshurun in Manchester.
"Irena's Vow," by Dan Goron, tells the story of Irena Gut Opdyke, a young Catholic woman who saved 12 Jews by hiding them in the basement of a house lived in by a German officer. After each performance the cast and audience will be able share thoughts on the play, the Holocaust, and the lessons relative to today's world.
The performance is a staged reading which will be performed by actors with scripts in hand with minimal blocking,
props, costumes. The focus is on communicating the story. A narrator reads stage directions and fills in any information that might help the audience fully understand the action. The performance is recommended for teens and adults, but may not be appropriate for young children, Playhouse officials note.
"It's amazing how quickly the audience forgets the missing scenery and props and fills in the details with their imaginations. Staged Readings are a lot of fun and allow theatre companies to share a play with the community without the rehearsal needs
or expense of a full scale production," said Bryan Halperin, executive director of the Playhouse and the original creator of the Holocaust Remembrance series.
"We are excited to be sharing our annual series with two new communities this year and encourage anybody interested to attend this year's reading," said Halperin. "Every year new people participate and share their stories and feelings which provide a wonderful learning experience for all involved. We're grateful to the Congregational Church and Temple Adath Yeshurun for their interest in hosting the readings and sharing the experience."
"The annual series has become an important special event for the Winni Players and the local community. This year we look to broaden the event to involve more communities with a goal of creating a statewide event in 2014 where we will invite youth groups from religious and theatre organizations and their families throughout the state to be involved,"
No reservations are required and admission is free for the series. However, those who wish to make a donation can do so through Playhouse web site , http://www.winniplayhouse.org/annual-fund.html.