Monday, October 31, 2011

A PLAY FOR THE FAMILY ABOUT THE EFFECT OF ANNE FRANK ON THE PLAYWRIGHT’S LIFE

If you missed (or saw) Hannah at Premiere Stages, you might want to check out this play about how Anne Frank informed the life of the playwright/actress Carol Lempert.

after anne frankAFTER ANNE FRANK
By Carol Lempert
Directed by Janice L. Goldberg

WHEN: Sunday, November 13, 5 PM
WHERE:
Joseph Kushner Hebrew Academy, 110 South Orange Ave., Livingston
TICKETS: start at $36
For more information call 973.929.3194 or e-mail holocaustcouncil@ujcnj.org

Writer-performer Carol Lempert has crafted her enduring involvement with the story of Anne Frank and its influence in shaping her own Jewish identity into an absorbing one-woman show.

More than once during After Anne Frank, Lempert observes, "Everyone tells me I look a lot like Anne Frank." And her experiences in performing in various stage adaptations of Anne's diary—first as Anne; then as Anne's sister Margot; and finally as their mother Edith—make up much of the piece.

However, Lempert's play, smartly directed by Janice L. Goldberg, is much more than a dramatized résumé. While celebrating the continuing inspiration of Anne Frank's humanity, the script passionately questions whether the retellings of Anne's story are part of a "commercialization of the Holocaust" and whether the artificialities of the stage can come anywhere near portraying the real-life tragedy. It also looks at the deep differences between the stage adaptations: the Broadway version by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett and Meyer Levin's adaptation. (The controversy over Levin's play was also the subject of Rinne Groff's Compulsion at the Public Theater earlier this year).

Lempert melds all this with her own lively and expressive presence, making this an entertaining, touching and provocative 80 minutes of solo theater.