Jewish National Fund - We Only Have ONE ISRAEL

The Golem

The Golem has attracted many writers, playwrights, and film producers. Perhaps one of the greatest Golem ever written or produced is the one which was written in 1921 by the Jewish leftist poet and playwright, H. Leivick, a great Yiddish playwright.

We should praise the great Manhattan Ensemble Theater (55 Mercer St., New York, 212-925-1900) and its artistic director, David Fishelson (Bess Eckstein, General Manager, for their new production of Leivick's The Golem (from April 15 to May 12, 2002).

It is the world premiere of David Fishelson's new adaptation of The Golem. Lawrence Sacharow was the director. The 'star' of The Golem is the famous distinguished, great actor Robert Prosky. Joseph C. Landis was the literary advisor of The Golem.

Drenched in the magic and mystery of the Kabbalah, The Golem retells the legend of a 16th century rabbi in Prague who defies God when he molds and animates a huge clay figure to defend the Jewish community from attack. Written in 1921 by ex-Bolshevik H. Leivick, the Golem was astonishingly prophetic of the events of the Holocaust and the birth of the State of Israel. In the wake of September 11, the play carries with it even more powerful echoes of the dilemmas faced by our civilization today: especially the notion of whether we're forced to resort to violence to survive.

The Golem marks the return of Robert Prosky to the New York stage in the lead role of the rabbi (a.k.a. "The Maharal"). Mr. Prosky is best known for his TONY(r) Award nominated performances in Broadway's Glengarry Glen Ross and A Walk in the Woods, his roles in the feature films Thief, Broadcast News, Dead Man Walking, Things Change and Hoffa, as well as television's Hill Street Blues. He was a member of Washington D.C.'s Arena Stage for 23 seasons from 1960 to 1983. In addition to being awarded the American Express Tribute for American Theater Artists in 1998, Mr. Prosky is the recipient of the Outer Critics Circle, Drama Desk, Helen Hayes, Dramalogue, Ovation, and Joseph Jefferson Awards. He was honored by the American Film Institute with a film retrospective at the Kennedy Center in February 1997.

Director Lawrence Sacharow received the Lucille Lortel Award and the Outer Critics Circle Award for directing Edward Albee's Pulitzer Prize-winning Three Tall Women, and an Obie award for directing Five of Us. He has directed at the Promenade, the Vineyard, BAM, CSC and La Mama in New York City; at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.; and regionally at Williamstown, the Alley, Mark Taper forum, and the Dallas Theatre Center. His writings on theater appear regularly in The New York Times. This autumn he will direct Edward Albee's The Lorca Play, a work based on the life of Federico Garcia Lorca.

The following distinguished people contributed to the success of this play: Seth A. Goldstein, Lynn Cohen, Brandon Demery, Rosemary Garrison, Ben Hammer, and others.

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