Wrestling Jerusalem

posts by randi@thejcc

Date(s) - 02/28/2015
7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

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The JCC in Manhattan


Written and performed by Aaron Davidman
Directed by Michael John Garcés
– San Francisco Chronicle
An old proverb says, “An enemy is someone whose story you do not know.”
Set in America, Israel and Palestine, Wrestling Jerusalem follows one man’s journey to understand the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Davidman’s solo performance is a personal story that grapples with the complexities of identity, history and social justice. Giving voice to a dozen different characters, the play sheds light on one of the most entrenched conflicts of our time.
Written and performed by Aaron Davidman and directed by Michael John Garcés, WRESTLING JERSUALEM was commissioned by Ari Roth, former Artistic Director of Theatre J in Washington D.C. as part of their annual Voices From A Changing Middle East Festival. After workshop performances at Theatre J, the play was then developed in part by Traveling Jewish Theatre, Sundance Institute Theatre Program and Playwrights Foundation, where Davidman used public performance readings to continue to hone the piece.

Davidman, who served as Artistic Director of Traveling Jewish Theatre in San Francisco for 10 years, was invited by Intersection for the Arts (also in San Francisco) to be an Artist-In-Residence. The play received its premiere at Intersection in March 2014, and a return engagement run in October 2014. Randy Rollison, Interim Executive Director at Intersection for the Arts, says, “We were thrilled to give Aaron an artistic home at Intersection and to premiere this new important work. Few other theatres in this country seem to be taking on this issue right now.”

Michael John Garcés, Artistic Director of Los Angeles’ Cornerstone Theater Company, comes to the project with years of experience directing politically charged plays and a career immersed in theatre as social engagement. “WRESTLING JERUSALEM is a passionate examination of a society under duress and its moral compromises of conflict and violence,” says Garcés. “At the same time the play is a deeply individual exploration of one man’s journey towards personal enlightenment and understanding what it means to be an American Jew in today’s world. It is an example of engaged theater at its best.”