Israeli Stage and Producing Artistic Director, Guy Ben-Aharon announce a six New England College Tour of award-winning Israeli writer Savyon Liebrecht's Apples From The Desert - scheduled for March 17 - 28 2012.
Beginning Israeli Stage in November 2010, Ben-Aharon hopes to fuse our preconceived notions of Israel with the realities of Israeli culture, in order to create an innovative theatrical experience for the Boston community and beyond. Over the past year, Israeli Stage has presented six staged readings with Elliot Norton and IRNE Award winners Will LeBow, Thomas Derrah, Jeremiah Kissel and OBIE-Award winner Melia Bensussen, the majority of which were performed at the Goethe Institut Boston, one at Harvard University's Fong Auditorium and another at Emerson College's Bill Bordy Theater.
"Our goal with this tour is to allow students to see Israel not only through the political lens, but also through the cultural lens, and to provide them a framework for peaceful dialogue in which they can explore themes and ideas in Israeli society they might not have encountered before," explains Ben-Aharon. Adding, "As an Israeli immigrant, theatre provided me a way to be a part of the American experience – all I can hope to do with this tour is to provide Americans with an unforgettable experience which will create a connection to the place I call home."
Apples from the Desert is a romantic comedy about Victoria (Kathleen Donohue) and Reuven (Dale Place), Orthodox Sephardic Jewish parents from Jerusalem whose only daughter, Rivka (Rebecca Schneebaum), runs away from home to live on a kibbutz with a secular Ashkenazi named Dooby (Grant MacDermott), after she finds out her father's plan to marry her off in an arranged marriage. The story then follows the two Orthodox Jerusalem sisters, Victoria and Sarah (Sheila Stasack), who set out on a mission to retrieve Rivka. With a comic, generous and hope-filled spirit, Savyon Liebrecht sketches the life of a young Israeli woman who falls under the shadow of terrifying social rifts – the ethnic rift between Sephardi and Ashkenazi Jews and the religious rift between religious and secular society. By the end of the play, Liebrecht enables the audience to discover the possibilities embodied in a future that transcends these rifts, and a time and place where women are free to choose their religious commitments and love interests.
Savyon Liebrecht was born in Munich, Germany, in 1948, to Holocaust survivor parents. She studied philosophy and literature at Tel Aviv University and started publishing in 1986. Liebrecht has published six collections of short stories and novellas and two novels. She has also written multiple plays, all of which have been staged, and a number of TV scripts. She has received awards for two of her TV scripts, the Alterman Prize" (1987), the Amelia Rosselli Prize for "Mail Order Women" (Italy, 2002) and the Maior-Amalfi Award for "A Good Place for the Night " (Italy, 2005). She was awarded Playwright of the Year for her successful plays, It`s All Greek to Me (2005), and Apples in the Desert (2006). The Banality of Love won Best Play of the Year in 2009.
For more information about the tour and how you can get involved, please visit http://www.israelistage.com, or follow us on Twitter @IsraeliStage or facebook at https://www.facebook.com/IsraeliStage.