On Sunday, October 17 at 2:30 p.m., the Epic Theatre Ensemble will present a staged reading of a new version of Ari Roth's acclaimed Born Guilty Cycle at the Museum of Jewish Heritage - A Living Memorial to the Holocaust. Blanka Zizka will direct the monumental three and one-half hour reading which will feature Rick Foucheux. Following the performance, Roth, Peter Sichrovsky, and other special guests will take part in a Q&A.
Tickets are $10. Tickets are available online at www.mjhnyc.org or by calling the Museum box office at 646.437.4202. All proceeds from this event benefit Epic Theatre Ensemble's 10th Anniversary Season and the Museum's educational programs.
About the Play
Roth's powerful work, based on the life and writings of Peter Sichrovsky, which the New York Times calls "searing drama," is a provocative quest to understand the lives of those who have inherited history's darkest sins. Linking his acclaimed Born Guilty play about the children of Nazis with The Wolf in Peter, about Sichrovsky -a contemporary Austrian drawn to the right-wing Freedom Party - Roth creates an epic saga of interwoven secrets, personal and political seductions, and stunning betrayals.
For Born Guilty, the first part of the cycle, Roth not only adapted Sichrovsky's interviews with children of Nazis and SS Officers, but he also chronicled the impact of this experience on Peter himself. Spurred by his personal experiences and a variety of stunning revelations since the premiere of Born Guilty, Roth wrote a sequel: The Wolf In Peter. Here Roth makes himself a character, experiencing his own journey of self-discovery as he travels to Europe and risks nearly everything to confront Peter for his seemingly inexplicable decision to become a member of Austrian's right-wing Freedom Party and ally himself with its outspoken leader, Jorg Haider. Peter Sichrovsky will take part in a Q&A after the staged reading.
Ari Roth said, "As the child of Jewish Austrian refugees from World War II, Peter felt compelled to ask important questions of his neighbors about their involvement in the atrocities. Because my own parents were forced to leave their homes in Germany, I was naturally drawn to Peter's story and his need to ask what our responsibilities are as children of history. The play cycle is a complicated 20-year-story that follows Peter as he breaks free of his identity and refuses to be defined by the history that defines our generation. His nuancEd Battle with himself and his family's legacy as it continues to unfold would be unbelievable -were it not true."
Zak Berkman, Founding Executive Director of Artistic Programming of the Epic Theatre Ensemble, said,
"Epic is honored to have been collaborating with Ari Roth on his Born Guilty Cycle over the past two years. These two plays, now fused together as one for the first time, offer a haunting personal and political exploration of history's scars: the visible and invisible ones; the ones that immediately rip at your skin; and the others that wait years, sometimes generations to come to the surface. We can think of no better home and forum to ask the questions Ari asks than at the Museum of Jewish Heritage where it's so clearly understood that history is a living entity."
About the Artistic Team and Cast
Ari Roth has been the Artistic Director at Theater J in Washington, D.C. for 14 years. At Theater J, he has produced more than 95 full productions including 33 world premieres and many more workshop presentations. Also a playwright, Mr. Roth has seen his work produced across the country. Productions include Goodnight Irene (commissioned by Manhattan Theatre Club); Life In Refusal; Love & Yearning in the Not-for-Profits; and Oh, The Innocents. His plays have been nominated for five Helen Hayes Awards, including Best Resident Production, and two Charles A. MacArthur Awards. He was recently named one of the Forward 50, a recognition from the Forward newspaper honoring fifty nationally prominent "men and women who are leading the American Jewish community into the 21st century." He has taught for the University of Michigan for 13 years, as well as for Brandeis, NYU, and Carnegie Mellon Universities.