Thursday, October 16, 2008

Snowflake Theory staging next week!

Dates: 26 October (Sunday)
27 October (Monday)

Time: 7:00 p.m. both nights

Where: Jewish Community Center, 1125 College Ave. on Sunday, 10/26
OSU Hillel Foundation, 46 E. 16th Ave. on Monday, 10/27

Admission to both readings is free, but tickets are required by calling the JCC at (614) 231-2731 or OSU Hillel at (614) 294-4797.

Cast: Marge Klein: Lil Strouss
Rabbi Harris Samuels: Jared Saltman
Clark Klein: Damian Bowerman
Violet Sample: Jessie Biggert
Rebecca Klein: Cheryl Jacobs

dessert reception following the Sunday reading; deli supper before the Monday reading at 5:00 p.m.

The readings are a celebration of several noteworthy events in the Central Ohio theatre world:
--it's the 60th anniversary of Gallery Players, the community theatre of the Jewish Community Center, founded in large measure because of anti-Semitism then prevalent in local community theatres. Gallery Players quickly became on the leading community theatres in the area, both because of its non-discrimination policies and because of the inspired leadership of Harold M. Eisenstein, the artistic director for many years
--we also honor Harold M.Eisenstein's life and work, noting that the theatre in the Jewish Community Center was dedicated to his memory last week
--the readings continue the emphasis that noted Ohio playwrights Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee placed, throughout their writing partnership, in nurturing and developing playwrights. When they weren't writing Inherit the Wind, The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail, Auntie Mame and Mame, and so many other classics of the American stage, both Jerry and Bob taught playwriting, encouraged young playwrights, arranged for readings of new plays, and foreshadowed the development of national theatre oganizations by creating the American Playwrights'Theatre.

The Snowflake Theory was a Finalist for the Southeastern Theatre Conference's latest Gethcell New Play Project and had a reading at Kentucky Repertory Theatre (formerly Horse Cave Theatre). It was also selected for a reading in the New Voices Series of the Cincinnati Arts Association and Cincinnati Playwrights Initiative at the Aronoff Center for the Arts and at ScriptFEST at Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre in Mars Hill, North Carolina .

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Leads announced

Columbus theatre icon Lil Strouss will play Marge, and Gallery Players Artistic Director Jared Saltman will be Rabbi Harris Samuels, while OSU Theatre and Hillel Players alum Adam Peal will be the perennial college student Clark. Additional casting to be announced soon!

Friday, March 28, 2008

The Snowflake Theory to be featured in 2008 Festival

The Snowflake Theory, a riotous comedy by Louisville playwright Nancy Gall-Clayton, will be the centerpiece of the 2008 Beyond the Borscht Belt: A Jewish Theatre Festival, to take place October 26 and 27th, 2008. Beyond the Borscht Belt celebrates Jewish arts and community in Columbus, which is literally "beyond the Borscht Belt" of traditional Jewish entertainment centered in New York's Catskill Mountains.

The 2008 Festival coincides with, and honors, the sixtieth anniversary of the founding of the Gallery Players of the Jewish Community Center, the oldest Jewish community theatre group in Central Ohio.

Marge has had an epiphany. Her adult children will never do what she hopes (get married, produce grandchildren, finish college, be normal), so she's decided to concentrate on her own journey, starting with smashing her melamine kosher dishes. But they won't break. To her surprise, her children, like her, have just headed in new directions. Rachel, age 40, has been inseminated with Jewish sperm and joined the peace movement. Clark, age 33, is changing majors yet again and may actually graduate from college, thanks to a non-Jewish girlfriend whose hair color changes frequently. Marge seeks advice from the new rabbi, whom she impresses with her vocabulary and a gravity-defying Jell-O creation. A happy ending for all makes this exploration of family relationships and faith even more satisfying.

Jello Bridge (2002) by Scott Christensen,

Readings will take place on Sunday, October 26th, at the Jewish Community Center, and on Monday, October 27th, at the Ohio State University Hillel Foundation. Playwright Nancy Gall-Clayton will be present, and will discuss the play with audience members following both performances. To learn more about the writer, visit

A gelatin sculpture contest will celebrate the reading. Chef Lana Covel of The New Standard has volunteered to help cooks explore the wonders of jello sculpture construction. It’s hoped that Franklin County-area women’s clubs will be interested in celebrating this traditional form of culinary expression.

Casting information about the readings will be posted early in the fall.

Other events in addition to the readings will be announced soon!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Meshugah to be staged

The reading, and Emily Mann's talk, all went extremely well--enormously positive response from the 100 or so folks in attendance at the reading, powerful performances (several audience members in tears by the end). A quite wonderful evening. Our thanks to the performers, to Alive newspaper's theatre critic Jay Weitz for moderating the post-reading discussion (which ended far too soon), and, especially, to Emily Mann for her whole-hearted and thoroughly involved participation.

Emily Mann’s adaptation of Meshugah

by Nobel Laureate Isaac Bashevis Singer

will be presented in a staged reading on Sunday, November 5th, as part of the first step towards establishing "Beyond the Borscht Belt, A Jewish Theatre Festival" in Columbus, as a cooperative presentation of the Ohio State University Hillel Foundation, The Ohio State University Department of Theatre and the Jerome Lawrence & Robert E. Lee Theatre Research Institute, with support from the Leventhal Fund and the Jewish Arts Endowment of the Columbus Jewish Foundation.

Emily Mann

THE STORY: Set in the 1950s on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, Meshugah is a tragicomic portrait of a community of recent Jewish émigrés living in the wake of the Holocaust. When Aaron Greidinger, a struggling novelist and advice columnist, falls in love with the beautiful mistress of a friend from his Warsaw past, dark secrets and bizarre twists threaten to break up the unusual romance. Emily Mann brings to swirling theatrical life Singer’s poignant love story of lost souls in a world gone meshugah.

Schedule for events on November 5th:

4:30 p.m.: Schmooze with Emily Mann

Roy Bowen Theatre, Drake Performance and Event Center, 1849 Cannon Drive, Ohio State University Campus

7:30 p.m.: Meshugah reading

OSU Hillel Foundation, 46 E. 16th Ave.


Aaron Greidinger: Jimmy Bohr
Max: Joe Cofer
Miriam: Victoria Patten
Priva: Ann Mirels
Stanley: Kal Poole
Woman Who Tells: Irene Braverman
Waiter: Bruno Lovric

for additional information,

In addition to the staged reading of Meshugah, there will also be screenings of films by and about Emily Mann's work:

Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters' First 100 Years --a filmed version of Mann's play about the Delany Sisters of New York Thursday, October 26th at 7:30 p.m., Hillel Foundation

Greensboro: A Public Dialogue -- a documentary about Mann’s play, Greensboro: A Requiem, produced by New Jersey Public Television. Tuesday, October 31st: 7:30 p.m. Hillel Foundation

Saturday, September 23, 2006