CEDAR CITY, Utah—Taken directly from the pages of a young girl’s diary, the dramatic play “The Diary of Anne Frank” will be presented now through October 23 at the Utah Shakespearean Festival. The Festival has also planned educational events to accompany the production and enrich the experience of audience members. These additional events include a discussion with a local man who had first-hand experience with the issues raised in the play, as well as a talkback with the international figure Rabbi Shmuley Boteach.
“This is an incredibly moving play that reflects a very dark period of time in the world,” said R. Scott Phillips, Festival executive director. “This play should be seen by audience members of all ages.”
“The Diary of Anne Frank” is the story a girl whose bravery, hope and determination have inspired thousands. Wendy Kesslman’s new adaptation of this famous play is a testament not to the brutality of war and hatred, but to the unshakable spirit of a young girl and to the hopes and loves of a family and a people trying to hold on to their faith.
Following the Sept. 23 matinee performance at approximately 4:30 p.m., St. George resident Hank Ombach will conduct a post-performance discussion in the Auditorium Theatre (300 W. Center St, Cedar City). When Ombach was a child his family hid a Jewish family in their home in Amsterdam during WWII. He can provide a first-hand account of what it felt like to conceal "the enemy" in his home despite the fact that it could have meant severe punishment and even death for everyone in his family. One-on-one interviews will be available following the discussion.
“Many don’t realize what a hardship it was to live during these times,” said Ombach. “These Jewish families were so brave. They were hunted for more than four years, and they did everything in their power to protect themselves and their loved ones.”
In addition, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach will be at the Festival to conduct talkbacks following the performances of “The Diary of Anne Frank” on October 5 and 6. Called by Newsweek magazine “a cultural phenomenon” and “the most famous rabbi in America,” Rabbi Shmuley is one of the world’s leading relationship, values, and spirituality experts. The discussions will center around the play and its significance and resonance with audiences today. Find more details about “America’s Rabbi” at bard.org. and at Shumley.com.
The fall season will run from Sept. 16 through Oct. 23 with three different plays in the Randall L. Jones Theatre. The season features Shakespeare’s “Odyssey”-like drama “The Adventures of Pericles,” the moving family drama “The Diary of Anne Frank,” and the rural comedy “Greater Tuna.” Tickets are on sale now at 1-800-PLAYTIX and bard.org.
Media Contact: Amanda Caraway, 435-586-1969, Caraway@bard.org
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