Nov 17, 2011 - Dec 4, 2011
MARIONETTE MUSICAL.Czechoslovak-American Marionette Theatre.
Clay and wood come to life in a marionette musical play based on the Jewish legend of the Golem, a medieval "robot" that runs amok in an attempt to protect the Prague Ghetto. Century-old and contemporary life-size wooden marionettes interact with puppeteers, dancers and musicians.
"Golem is more than a show; it is a small miracle." The Puppetry
Direction by Vit Horejs
Music by Frank London of the Klezmatics
Choreography by Naomi Goldberg Haas
Performed by: Janelle Barry, Deborah Beshaw, Scott Crawford, Fang Du, Alan Barnes Netherton, Steven Ryan, Alex Megan Shell, Bridget Struthers, Ronny Wasserstrom, Kiku Sakai
La MaMa E.T.C., 74A East Fourth Street (Ellen Stewart Theater)
Thursdays through Saturdays at 7:30 pm, Sundays 2:30 PM
Box Office: (212) 475-7710, www.lamama.org
In a featured presentation of its 50th Anniversary season, La MaMa will reprise Czechoslovak American Marionette Theatre's dance-theater "Golem," a stage rendition of the famed Jewish legend, conceived, written and directed by Vit Horejs. The production will be performed November 17 to December 4, 2011 in La MaMa's Ellen Stewart Theater, 66 East Fourth Street, which was a site of innovation in Jewish Theater since 1882 when it was known as the Turn Theater and home to the first Yiddish play in New York. The production features music by Frank London (The Klezmatics) and choreography by Naomi Goldberg Haas. The performers will include nine actor/dancer/puppeteers and a whole cast of small to life-sized wooden marionettes.
"Golem" was developed at Festival of Contemporary Dance in Bytom, Poland in 1996. When it premiered at La MaMa in 1997, it was Czechoslovak American Marionette Theatre's La MaMa debut. It was subsequently presented by the Jim Henson Festival of Puppet Theater in 1998. Frank London's "Golem Tants," composed for this production, was recorded with Itzhak Perlman and the Klezmatics in 1996 at Radio City Music Hall for Mr. Perlman's CD, "Live in the Fiddler's House."
The Golem is an ancient Jewish myth (the word "Golem" appears for the first time in David's Psalm 139) and is most familiar as the story of Rabbi Loew of 16th Century Prague. In order to protect the ghetto from persecution and violence, he fashioned a walking clay giant to be its guardian. But Rabbi Loew lost control of his creature; the Golem spread death and destruction everywhere and had to be stopped. The legend says that now it lies covered by cobwebs in the attic of the Alte-Neue Shul, the famous 15th-century synagogue of Prague. Czechoslovak American Marionette Theatre was founded in 1990 in New York City when Vit Horejs and Jan Unger, two Czech-born puppeteers, found two dozen antique marionettes that had "slept" for fifty years in another attic at Jan Hus Church on East 74th Street.
The Golem myth was the subject of Gustav Meyrink's novel, "Der Golem," in which the creation was more a ghost than a humanized robot, and of the expressionist film by Paul Wegener in which the creature is indelibly remembered as a lumbering giant with bauern mode hair and a vaguely Mongoloid frown. In 1992, La MaMa presented a Golem from Italy that was a sung drama by Moni Ovadia based on an homonymous drama by Leivik, a Yiddish dramatist whose "Golem" has been produced by the Jewish Theatre Habima in Moscow.
La MaMa, 74A East 4th St, NYC
From: Nov 17, 2011
To: Dec 4, 2011
Organized by GOH Productions