In A Shayna Maidel - A Pretty Girl, at the Chemainus Theatre Sept. 13-28, the consequences of one innocent decision change the course of a family's life forever.
After many years of separation, Polish sisters Luisa (Luisa Jojic) and Rayzel 'Rose' Weiss (Susan Coodin) have reunited in a collision of vastly different worlds. Amid the chaos of becoming reacquainted, each girl struggles to honour her past and live for the future.
The story begins 20 years after scarlet fever, the Depression, and the Second World War divided their family between Holocaustseized Poland and sheltered New York.
Meeting now as grown-ups in mid-century Manhattan, they share little in common beyond their fragile bloodline. As sudden roommates, strong-willed Luisa and selfish Rose endeavour to rise above their obvious differences by confronting unexpected family truths, revealing scars of their past, and dealing with their domineering father's relentless guilt. Though many of her dearest allies are now gone, Luisa's imaginary conversations with her Mama (Norma Bowen), childhood friend Hanna (Masae Day), and lost love Duvid (Kirk Smith) help her cope with her new life in America. Exploring her surroundings and her past, she discovers how seemingly minor, everyday decisions can have enduring consequences.
Harry Nelken, is the blustery and imperious father, Mordechai, and manages to evoke fear and warmth.
The 1986 play by Barbara Lebow is more than a typical work of dramatic theatre. A Pretty Girl moves through time, reality and fantasy to tell a beautiful story of tragedy and hope. It is a touching play that calls on audiences to consider their perception of inner and outer beauty, and the tenacity of the human spirit.
Tickets for A Pretty Girl are available now at chemainustheatre.ca, or by calling the box office at1-800-565-7738.
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