The Roses in June (Closing Performances)

The Roses in June closes its Philadelphia run with two performances today at Plays & Players Theatre in Philadelphia. This new play, written by Timothy M. Kolman, tackles two difficult subjects through the lives of The Rose Family, who fled Nazi Germany during the Holocaust, escaping to what they hoped would be a better life in London. There is the life-long fear associated with being a refugee and the anguish of bullying and anti-Semitism since their son Paul was a victim of this, even after moving to London. With striking resemblance to contemporary times, the play brings the audience face-to-face with the past, but in frightening reality with the present.

There is a matinee today at 2 pm and an evening performance at 7 p.m. Tickets are $47 for orchestra seating and $35 for balcony seating. To purchase tickets, call 866-811-4111 or visit www.therosesinjune.com. For groups of 10 or more, call: 267 299 8822. Students and Seniors can purchase tickets at 50% discount at the theatre box office one hour prior to show time. For information, call: 844 – 7ROSE67  (844-776-7367).

Screening and Q&A of Trezoros- The Lost Jews of Kastoria

The Holocaust Awareness Museum and Education Center of Philadelphia will host a screening of another important Holocaust-related film, “Trezoros – The Lost Jews of Kastoria,” coupled with a Q&A session with the filmmakers.

The story is set in the beautiful, idyllic city of Kastoria where Jews and Christians lived in harmony for over two millennia. In October of 1940 it would all be destroyed after the invasion of Greece by Axis forces. Initially occupied by Italy, the Jewish community remained safe. After Mussolini fell from power the Nazis took control of the town, dooming the community that had existed since the times of the Roman Empire. The film uses never before seen archival footage, vibrantly bringing to life just one of the many Jewish communities that had existed in Greece before the end of World War II. “Trezoros” (a Ladino/JudeoSpanish term of endearment meaning “Treasures”) is a highly emotional story told by its survivors, with interviews filmed on location in Kastoria, Thessaloniki, Athens, Tzur Moshe, Tel Aviv, Miami, Los Angeles and New York. Please join us after the screening for a dessert reception & an opportunity to speak with Larry Confino & Lawrence Russo – filmmakers of Trezoros: The Lost Jews of Kastoria. This event is presented in partnership with the National Museum of American Jewish History.

Reservations are recommended for both events by calling HAMEC at 215-464-4701or email shelley@hamec.org.

The Roses in June (Press Opening)

Tonight is the press opening for The Roses in June, a new play written by Timothy M. Kolman, which will run through July 1, 2017, at Plays & Players Theatre in Philadelphia. The play tackles two difficult subjects through the lives of The Rose Family, who fled Nazi Germany during the Holocaust, escaping to what they hoped would be a better life in London. There is the life-long fear associated with being a refugee and the anguish of bullying and anti-Semitism since their son Paul was a victim of this, even after moving to London. With striking resemblance to contemporary times, the play brings the audience face-to-face with the past, but in frightening reality with the present.

Since tonight is the press opening, the show will begin at 7 p.m. Otherwise, it will run Tuesdays through Fridays at 8 pm, and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 pm and 7 pm. Each performance will be followed by talk-backs featuring the playwright, director and actors.

Tickets are on sale now and are $47 for orchestra seating and $35 for balcony seating. To purchase tickets, call 866-811-4111 or visit www.therosesinjune.com. For groups of 10 or more, call: 267 299 8822. Students and Seniors can purchase tickets at 50% discount at the theatre box office one hour prior to show time. For information, call: 844 – 7ROSE67  (844-776-7367).

The Roses in June (Premiere)

The world premiere of The Roses in June, a new play written by Timothy M. Kolman, will make its debut in Philadelphia on June 14, 2017, and run through July 1, 2017, at Plays & Players Theatre in Philadelphia. The play tackles two difficult subjects through the lives of The Rose Family, who fled Nazi Germany during the Holocaust, escaping to what they hoped would be a better life in London. There is the life-long fear associated with being a refugee and the anguish of bullying and anti-Semitism since their son Paul was a victim of this, even after moving to London. With striking resemblance to contemporary times, the play brings the audience face-to-face with the past, but in frightening reality with the present.

The Roses in June will run Tuesdays through Fridays at 8 pm, and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 pm and 7 pm. Each performance will be followed by talk-backs featuring the playwright, director and actors.

Tickets are on sale now and are $47 for orchestra seating and $35 for balcony seating. To purchase tickets, call 866-811-4111 or visit www.therosesinjune.com. For groups of 10 or more, call: 267 299 8822. Students and Seniors can purchase tickets at 50% discount at the theatre box office one hour prior to show time. For information, call: 844 – 7ROSE67  (844-776-7367).

Remembering the St. Louis: The Consequences of Refusing Refuge

The 79th anniversary of the return of the MS St. Louis to Europe. On June 6,1938, the MS St. Louis arrived on the shores of the United States carrying 937 Jewish refugees who were fleeing Nazi persecusion. Denied entry into Cuba, the United States, and Canada, the ship returned to Europe and many of the passengers died in death camps.
To commemorate this anniversary, HIAS PA is hosting, “Rembering the St. Louis: The Consequences of Refusing Refuge”.  The program will feature noted experts, including Scott Miller, Director of Curatorial Services at the U.S Holocaust Memorial Museum, who will share findings from his multi-year research project on the fate of all the passengers of the St. Louis.
For more details and to register, go to http://hiaspa.org/St_Louis.

Holocaust Survivors Travel With IDF Officers to Poland and Israel

Miroslawa Gruszczynska (left) and Holocaust survivor Miri Amir. Photo credit: Shahar Azran.

Miroslawa Gruszczynska (left) and Holocaust survivor Miri Amir. Photo credit: Shahar Azran.

Auschwitz-Birkenau survivor Bronia Brandman, 86, returned to the death camp for the first time since her liberation. Holocaust survivor Miri Amir was reunited yesterday with Miroslawa Gruszczynska, the woman whose family — awarded the title “Righteous Among the Nations” by Yad Vashem — hid her from the Nazis in Poland during World War II. Both of these emotionally charged events took place during a trip to Poland by Holocaust survivors, officers from the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) and a delegation of 40 supporters of the organization Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF). During the second leg of the journey, the group also traveled together to Israel.

[Read more…]

When we say, ‘Never Again’ we must mean it.

PA Representative Dwight Evans’ statement in response to White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s comments on Adolph Hitler.

Yesterday, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer mentioned Hitler in reference to the most recent chemical weapons attack by Syrian President Assad and said, “you had someone as despicable as Hitler, who didn’t even sink to using chemical weapons.” This incredibly careless and disrespectful comment demonstrates Mr. Spicer’s clear mischaracterization of history.  Mr. Spicer’s inexcusable comments fall during Passover. We can never tolerate Holocaust denial, but it certainly is in even greater distaste during this reflective and meaningful time for Jewish communities across the US and our globe.  Holocaust denial and a general lack of understanding for communities who have suffered the worst form of persecution throughout our history and those who are still being persecuted today is something we as a nation cannot and will not stand for. I am glad to see Mr. Spicer apologize for his comments yesterday but I repeat when we say, #NeverAgain we mean Never Again.

Watch Sean Spicer’s original comments comparing Hitler and Assad:

Refugee Ban With Holocaust Parallels

“An America which turns away refugees is not America. We forgot that during the Holocaust. Let’s never again forget who we are,” writes Mark Hetfield, president and CEO of HIAS. Hetfiled was one of many to point out a compelling coincidence: President Trump issued his controversial refugee ban on International Holocaust Remembrance Day. [Read more…]

Opening Reception for Two Special Gershman Y Exhibits

We invite the public to a reception celebrating the opening of two extraordinary exhibits running concurrently at the Gershman Y: Letters from my Grandparents: The Art of Ruth Schreiber and A Close Look Inside James Shuler Memorial Boxing Gym: Photographs by Jano Cohen.

Gershman Y Exhibit-Ruth-Schrieber-image-1-600x400“Letters from my Grandparents,” which closes March 30, is a mixed-media exhibition that carries substantial history and emotional import. The artist, Ruth Schreiber, has spun her family history into drawings, sculptures, clothing, table settings and more in her ongoing tribute to her grandparents, who perished in the Holocaust but managed to write approximately 200 letters and postcards to their five surviving children between 1939 and 1942.

Enthralled with the famed James Shuler Memorial Boxing Gym in West Philadelphia, photographer Jano Cohen made many visits to the gym over the course of a year, earning members’ trust and photographing the gym’s regulars, teachers and students. The result of this intimate access is a collection of photographs comprising the exhibit “A Close Look Inside James Shuler Memorial Boxing Gym,” brought to the Gershman Y through a collaboration with the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center. This exhibit will close on March 8.

The January 26th opening will include light bites, libations and comments from the artists themselves. You can register for the opening online at GershmanY.org or by calling 215-545-4400.