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Kindertransport At Wells

Originally posted on The Lansing Star Online
Written by David Foote

Aurora -- The Wells College Department of Theatre & Dance will present a staged reading of Diane Samuels' play 'Kindertransport' (winner of the Meyer-Whitworth Award), directed by Associate Professor of Theatre Siouxsie Easter. Wells was selected as a participant in the 2016 Remembrance Readings coordinated by the National Jewish Theatre Foundation. 'Kindertransport' will be performed in the Recital Hall of Barler Hall on Monday, May 2, at 7:30 p.m.

From 1938 to 1940, nearly 10,000 Jewish children were evacuated without their parents from Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia to England. Most were between the ages of 4 and 17. Some were babies carried by children. Raised in foster homes and group homes, many times these children were the only members of their families to survive the horrors of the Holocaust. 'Kindertransport' follows one of these refugees as she tries to come to terms with the past she thought she had buried. It is about the choices we make to keep our children safe and the repercussions of traumatic events through generations of the family.

As the story unfolds in an intricate weaving of past and present, previously hidden relationships, secrets and feelings are revealed. The connections between the women of one family are tested by these revelations as they each search for truth in what has happened to them. This piece is made even more poignant by current events. As Bosnia, Rwanda, Darfur and Iraq have shown us, parents are still being forced to take extraordinary measures to protect their children. Sometimes desperation leaves only the choice to let them go when what is wanted most is to hold them close.

The cast includes Missy Brewer '16 (English: Literature, Theatre & Dance), Melanie Canales '16 (English: Literature), Devon Harris '18 (Political Science), Michelle Lee '16 (English: Creative Writing, Women's & Gender Studies), Kateri Pelton '18 (Theatre & Dance), and Macy Smolsky '17 (English: Creative Writing, Theatre & Dance).

Wells College is honored to be part of the 2nd Annual National Jewish Theater Foundation- Holocaust Theater International Initiative Remembrance Readings.

This pioneering program involving a wide range of cultural and educational organizations uses theatrical content to create live events, held whenever possible at simultaneous times and dates in venues throughout the U.S. In just their second year, participation has increased by 50% to include theaters, memorial museums, libraries, consulates, colleges and universities and JCCs from 11 states including the celebrity involvement of Ed Asner. Remembrance Readings recognizes Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom Ha Shoah) by using theater as a means to honor the victims of the Holocaust, their memories and stories and its must-never-be-forgotten lessons.