New Jewish Voices: Plays Produced by the Jewish Repertory Theatre

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SUNY Press, Jan 1, 1985 - Drama - 302 pages
New Jewish Voices presents the first anthology of modern Jewish-American drama. These highly acclaimed plays, previously produced by New York City's nationally-renowned Jewish Repertory Theatre, offer an enjoyable and eye-opening introduction to the unique and modern voice of five young writers. The insights and visions of these playwrights will help redefine Jewish theater. While offering college students and amateur dramatic groups exciting new material, these five plays will entertain and delight every reader. An introduction by Edward M. Cohen, associate director of Jewish Repertory Theatre, outlines the history of Jewish theatre in America, the origins and development of the Jewish Repertory Theatre, the methods and programs of play development used at the theatre, and an analysis of current trends in modern Jewish playwriting. The anthology also includes production photos, a list of all plays produced by the theatre, and original scripts.

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Benya the King
Friends Too Numerous to Mention
Taking Steam
Plays produced by the Jewish Repertory Theatre 19741984
Scripts developed at JRT Writers Lab and their subsequent readings productions publication and awards 19781984

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Page xiii - Attention must be paid,” intones the shrill, sing-song voice of the mother, ordering her sons to take notice of their father's plight. “Attention, attention, must finally be paid to such a person.” She is really admonishing the audience that Willy is, as she says, “a human being.” But that is just it; he is a capitalized Human Being without being anyone, a suffering animal who commands
Page xiii - A disturbing aspect of Death of a Salesman was that Willy Loman seemed to be Jewish, to judge by his speech-cadences, but there was no mention of this on the stage. He could not be Jewish because he had to be
Page xiii - age-old Jewish rhythms (“Attention must be paid” is not a normal English locution, nor is “finally” as it is used, nor is “such a person”) seems to have drifted in from some other play that was about particular people.*
Page xiii - backyards, stoops and fire escapes of the American School claim to be “America,” while containing no particular, individualized persons of the kind that are found in the plays of other nations and in novels. The absence of any specific information seems to guarantee profundity

About the author (1985)

Edward M. Cohen associate director of the Jewish Repertory Theatre, has directed and produced plays for more than 10 years. A recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Directing Fellowship, Cohen also received the John Golden Award for his play "Cakes With The Wine."

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