When Rose and Lusia are reunited, Rose tries to engage with an older sister who, having survived the horrors of war overseas, now seems a stranger. And Lusia—haunted by vivid memories of her past—struggles to connect with a family she barely knows. A Shayna Maidel explores family, faith, and forgiveness inthe pursuit of a better future. You might be watching a story about a trio of Jewish immigrants in New York in , with all the attendant themes of pride and assimilation, honoring the past and moving forward to the present, but you cannot help but think of the common problems faced by all immigrants, all refugees. Read the full review. Watch the full segment.
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A Shayna Maidel Video Preview. Wellington Ave Chicago. When the two sisters reunite in New York City many years later, Rose is confronted by an older sister who, having survived the horrors of war overseas, now seems nothing more than a stranger. And Lusia-haunted by vivid memories of her past-struggles to connect with a family she's never known and to believe in the potential of life in a new land.
Chicago Tribune - Highly Recommended. Chicago Sun Times - Highly Recommended. Snippets of lullabies and screams, thundering hooves, shattered glass, laughter that sounds eerily like weeping create an audio scrim. Daily Herald - Recommended. Written in , "A Shayna Maidel" -- which translates to "a pretty girl" -- is as current as the headlines describing the situation at our southern border.
It's a story about grief and guilt, trauma and recovery and family members reconciling in the wake of inconceivable atrocities. Chicago Reader - Somewhat Recommended. But Lebow also wants to make the pain go away.
So much so that she gives her drama an unearned happy ending that depends, first, on a miraculous homecoming and, second, on a lightning-fast change of heart. There are two kinds of Holocaust narrative, after all: the kind, like Shoah, that sticks to the monstrous facts "If you could lick my heart, it would poison you" , and the kind, like Schindler's List, that's committed to redemption.
A Shayna Maidel is out for redemption. Windy City Times - Recommended. As directed by Vanessa Stalling-who's really come into her own in the last two years-all the performers are effective and gain our empathy except Stransky, who's not supposed to be sympathetic.
Still, the play lumbers along-not because it's boring but because its deliberate pace offers no resolution without the late plot surprises. Time Out Chicago - Recommended. A Shayna Maidel begins with with birth of a child during a pogrom in 19th-century Poland. Stage and Cinema - Recommended. Your sister is your sister forever. There's all that history, after all. But what if you and your sister didn't grow up together?
What if you were separated - by distance and then by the war? How do you build sisterhood? In Barbara Lebow's moving play, "A Shayna Maidel", the war is over and two sisters, one growing up safely in Brooklyn, the other surviving the horrors of the Holocaust in Poland, must try to find a way to connect.
By the way, a shayna maidel is a pretty girl. NewCity Chicago - Recommended. This is absolutely the sort of work that we need to champion. Chicago Theatre Review - Highly Recommended.
It speaks well of this theatre company that every cast member, as well as the director, are making their TimeLine debuts. Stalling has infused her presentation with life, authentic humanity and unpretentious sensitivity. Chicagoland Theater Reviews - Highly Recommended. Whenever there is a production this sensitive and moving, the audience can look to the director for commendation.
Vanessa Stalling gets the props for orchestrating a staging that clearly presents a narrative that switches back and forth in time and place. The Fourth Walsh - Highly Recommended. The Weiss family searches for understanding, forgiveness and love in the aftermath of a genocide. Although the holocaust is ever-present, an exchange about lists is particularly heart-wrenching, this play is about what happened to a pretty girl.
And her story is powerful. Third Coast Review - Highly Recommended. A Shayna Maidel Yiddish for a pretty girl is skillfully directed by Vanessa Stalling, with careful attention to the present turmoils and wrenching memories of the main characters. Mama, like most European Jews who were not able to leave, did not survive. The survivors and their relatives found it difficult to reunite.
The Hawk Chicago - Highly Recommended. Yet the play's overall themes and the cast's performances are ones which resonate long after leaving the theatre. You'll leave contemplating life's near-misses. You'll leave grappling with immigration policies, those that separate families, likes our characters', 'temporarily.
You'll leave asking yourself what's most important to you, what you would save and hold on to if the world around you ever crumbled. It's, as the best productions are, an experience with lasting effects. Chicago Theater and Arts - Highly Recommended. The six member cast is stellar. But Emily Berman as Lusia steals the show exhibiting two different personalities as a happy newlywed before the war and a scarred and flawed survivor afterwards.
Chicago On Stage - Highly Recommended. How fitting, then, that Timeline Theatre has chosen to revive the drama A Shayna Maidel, which serves as a reminder both of the devastation that faced European Jews in the 30s and 40s and that these horrors did not happen to faceless people; they happened to families.
Picture This Post - Recommended. Together, they make up for what their father has missed amid the bounty of America: taking two pieces of bread and relishing the sandwich of life. Now Playing. Coming Soon. Half-Price Tickets.
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A Shayna Maidel
IN ''A Shayna Maidel,'' two sisters - one a survivor of Nazi concentration camps, the other brought up as an American -meet in after a separation of almost 20 years, and in the course of a heart-rending evening, they achieve an intimacy that transcends the theatrical event. Barbara Lebow's play is about the horrors of the Holocaust; it is also a deeply personalized study of sisterhood, family and a crisis of faith. After previous productions at the Academy Theater in Atlanta, where Ms. The play introduces New Yorkers to a talented dramatist and provides the impetus for two beautifully matched performances, by Gordana Rashovich and Melissa Gilbert as the sisters. The author carefully avoids both sermonizing and sentimentality.
A Shayna Maidel (A Pretty Girl)
A Shayna Maidel Video Preview. Wellington Ave Chicago. When the two sisters reunite in New York City many years later, Rose is confronted by an older sister who, having survived the horrors of war overseas, now seems nothing more than a stranger. And Lusia-haunted by vivid memories of her past-struggles to connect with a family she's never known and to believe in the potential of life in a new land. Chicago Tribune - Highly Recommended. Chicago Sun Times - Highly Recommended.
'A Shayna Maidel' at TimeLine is a sister story with surprising power
Barbara Lebow's play A Shayna Maidel, first produced in , dramatizes the saga of the Weiss family, Polish Jews whose lives are irrecoverably altered by the Holocaust. The play begins in a Polish shtetl in , when the patriarch of the family, Mordechai Weiss, is born during what appears to be a pogrom. This scene is significant in Lebow's play, for he is a good baby who does not cry, thus foreshadowing his resilience and tough spirit. A Shayna Maidel is a memory play in that it is set in three times: when Mordechai is born in , when his two daughters Rose White and Lusia Weiss Pechenik are reunited in New York City during the present , and when Lusia has flashbacks of her life in Poland immediately before and after the Holocaust. Mordechai insists that she come to live with her sister, Rose. This order from her father upsets Rose because she does not remember her sister and thus feels uncomfortable about sharing an apartment with her.
The Theater: ''A Shayna Maidel''