TEATRON 2022: A Festival of Jewish Theatre

ShPIeL-Performing Identity with Bunbury Theatre presents TEATRON 2022: A Festival of Jewish Theatre. This digital online theatre with live events, festival, will showcase works from theatre companies and artists across the United States out of identity and social justice intersecting with Jewish heritage, culture, history and spirituality.


HaMapah/The Map Dance-on-Film – A DNAWORKS Production. Concept, Choreography, and Performance: Adam W. McKinney; Direction: Daniel Banks; Cinematography and Editing: Laura Bustillos Jáquez

Adam W. McKinney, Daniel Banks, and Laura Bustillos Jáquez traveled to Benin, West Africa; Kraków and Siedlanka, Poland; Colt, Forrest City, and Palestine, Arkansas; St. Louis, Missouri; Harlowton and Lewistown, Montana; and Milwaukee, Wisconsin to film this genealogical dance-journey. In HaMapah/The Map Dance-on-Film McKinney dances to heal transgenerational trauma in ancestral locations. As part of the residencies in these cities, DNAWORKS led workshops, created new work with local dancers, and curated happenings with local residents. 

For more info and film credits: https://www.dnaworks.org/htmdof

Lilith is a study of the story of the first woman, created as Adam’s equal, who rebelled against Adam and fled Eden.  This character is explored as a figure from ancient texts who has been re-envisioned and reclaimed in modern feminist thought. The performance views Lilith as an observer of history, dwelling outside of linear time, who constantly relives her own creation, her fall/escape from Adam and Eden, her punishment (to have one hundred of her children die every day) and the injustice that led to it. At times she appears as a creatrix, a serpent, a winged creature, embodying the many ways that literature and art has viewed her through the ages, but reinterpreting these disparate images into one whole, complex being. Lilith was inspired by the sculpture “Lilith” by Kiki Smith. Dancer/director: Wendy Jehlen.

Blewish – Being Blewish (Black & Jewish) can be frustrating, especially when people frequently assume that someone can’t be Jewish just because they’re Black. Blewish is the story of a boy stuck in the middle. Torn between either concealing or embracing his full identity, he learns how he can help create a world where no other child feels the pressure of having to make that choice again. Inspired by true events, Blewish, is written & directed by Ezra Edmond. Blewish had its world premiere at the 2021 Chicago International Children’s Film Festival. It is also an official selection of the 2021 Cucalorus Film Festival.

How Do You Jew – A web series based on original research into the little-known Jewish history of the American toy industry. Co-created by Mason Rosenthal and Paul Kruse. Mason Rosenthal is a performance maker, director, actor, and teacher raised in Skokie, Illinois. He is a founding co-director of the award-winning Philadelphia-based Lightning Rod Special. LRS’ recent work includes The Appointment (NYT‘ “Best Theater of 2019“) and Jenn Kidwell and Scott Sheppard’s Underground Railroad Game (2016 Obie Award for “Best New American Theatre Work,” selected by NYT in 2017 as one of the “25 Best Plays of the Last 25 Years”). Mason is also a founding member of The Medium Theatre Company.

A Stranger in This Land (excerpt) by Si Kahn – What do the following have in common: Soldiers in the Czar’s army, shoe factory workers, gas station operators, rabbis, civil rights leaders, pick and shovel laborers on the Canadian Pacific Railway, Jewish faith healers, undocumented immigrants, hod carriers, bootleggers, a soldier in the trenches of World War I, Talmudic scholars and a driver for Al Capone? They’re all among the older generations of Si Kahn’s Polish/Russian/Lithuanian/Austrian Jewish-American family, stretching back to the 19th century and his great-great-grandmother. With special appearances by (in more or less alphabetical order): the Angel of Death, the Black Plague, corned beef, Cossacks, the Czar, the “Goldene Medina,” (the “Golden Land”), the Italian mob, the Jewish mob, the Kaddish, Emma Lazarus, Miami Beach, miracles, pastrami, pogroms, Pete Seeger, shrimp-wrapped bacon and the Statue of Liberty. Si Kahn has spent 40 years as a composer, lyricist and book writer for musical theater.  He has had full productions at the Goodspeed Opera House’s Norma Terris Theatre in East Haddam, Connecticut; the National Alliance for Musical Theatre (NAMT) Festival of New Musicals in New York (staged reading); the Berkeley, Milwaukee and Tennessee Repertory Theatres; the Tennessee Performing Arts Center (TPAC) in Nashville; the Playgroup in Knoxville; Piccolo Spoleto Fringe in Charleston, South Carolina; Perseverance Theatre in Juneau, Alaska; Central Square Theatre in Cambridge, Massachusetts; and Main Stage West in Sebastopol, California, where he has been the official Artist in Residence since April, 2011. sikahn.com.

God of Vengeance by Sholem Asch tells the story of a seemingly observant Jewish couple and their daughter Rivkeleh who live upstairs in their Lower East Side apartment during the Great Depression.  Yankl and Soreh do their best to protect their only child from mixing with their bustling livelihood—a thriving ‘brothel’ business downstairs in the basement. Rivkeleh is at a marriageable age and plans for a future husband are being made.  She is ensured an attractive dowry when her father commissions a Torah scroll, worth thousands, to be written just for her.  Supposedly, the hand-written scroll is believed to protect her and keep her kosher. Meanwhile young Rivkeleh has fallen in love with Mankeh, one of his prostitutes and a tender relationship blossoms. Tensions mount and soon life upstairs and downstairs begin to entangle. As Yankl’s plans are threatened, he begins to unravel. | Produced by Yiddish Theater Ensemble | Video Adaptation & Direction by Bruce Bierman (100 min.).