PACA Presents A Shayna Maidel

Categories:  Events    Theater
Wednesday, April 15th, 2015 at 5:15 AM
PACA Presents A Shayna Maidel by Sara Toth
Photo by Raymund Flande via Flickr

In Yiddish, “shayna maidel” means “pretty girl” – think of it as a term of endearment, often from an older family member.

It’s also the title of Barbara Lebow’s A Shayna Maidel, a show that, according to The New York Times theater review in 1987 “echoes with lost innocence.”

It’s no wonder, as it’s a play focusing on a two sisters – each a “pretty girl” in their own right – navigating the aftermath of the Holocaust. Powerful, haunting, and deeply affecting,  A Shayna Maidel is also the latest production from Performing Artists Collective Alliance (PACA), opening April 16 in Erie.

A Shayna Maidel is the story of two sisters reunited after 20 years. One is a survivor of the horrors of Nazi concentration camps; the other, who fled Europe when she was four, is now a fully Americanized young woman who barely remembers her older sister. It’s a conflict of family, of cultures, and of faith, and a poignant study of the bonds of sisterhood. An additional foil is presented in the girls’ father, whose neglect, self-centeredness, and overbearing nature create two different (but similarly painful) schisms between he and his daughters.

Despite the entrenched pain both daughters grapple with in A Shayna Maidel, Mel Gussow promised readers of The New York Times review in 1987 that “with sustained tenderness,” Lebow “offers a catharsis and a promise of embracing love.” And that’s what family does, after all – they may bring out our worst, but they also help us tap into our best. — Sara Toth

8 p.m. April 16-18, 23-25// PACA, 1505 State Street, Second Floor// paca1505.com // Tickets $10

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Local politicians Breneman and Brennan unite to engage the community and combat Erie’s east side blight.

 

Erie stands with Standing Rock 

Barbara and Julian Stanczak at Mercyhurst University’s Cummings Gallery

Erie will become a “Broadway Christmas Wonderland” for just one night.

Australian musician Joe Robinson will play a special performance for one night only at PACA.

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Standing in solidarity with communities targeted in the 2016 election. 

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