There have been several shows written about the Holocaust, but on Saturday, July 23, 2011, I saw one of the most riveting new plays I have seen in a while, "When Yellow Were the Stars on Earth," written and directed by Franco Moschetti, which is currently playing at Manhattan Repertory Theatre's Summer Fest 2011. "When Yellow Were the Stars on Earth" tells the story of a German cabaret singer and Jewish Resistance fighter who cross paths in the most unexpected way in Berlin 1943, with both women making the ultimate sacrifice for one another.
Franco has written a powerful and emotional play about a topic that has not been dealt with in theatre before: the considerable number of Germans who died opposing the horrors of the Nazi machine. Helping to bring this show to life is a terrific cast consisting of Franco himself, Gudrun Buhler, Michele Farbman, Johannes Schwaiger, Kazy Tauginas, Sergey Nagorny, Matt McAllister, David Schwartz, John Whitney, and Igor Kaganskiy. The cast as a whole performs great together, each character necessary to tell this story, but Franco, Gudrun, Kazy, and Michele really do lead the story (as they are the main characters). Gudrun, Michele, and Johannes get to sing during the show and all three have stand-out voices!
This show was performed in an extremely small space and I really commend this cast for performing in such tight quarters. The space did add to the intimacy of the show and the show would still work very well in a larger venue. There were so many intense moments in this show that I couldn't wait for the next scene.
While some might think, "why do I need to see another show about the Holocaust," my answer is simply because it's a topic that still needs to be talked about and because you haven't seen Franco Moschetti's "When Yellow Were the Stars on Earth" which gives a different viewpoint about the brave heroes who risked their life to save the Jews.
"When Yellow Were the Stars on Earth" has only 2 performances left, Sunday July 24 at 7pm and Thursday July 28 at 9pm! I highly suggest seeing this compelling show that will entrance you, educate you, and allow you to see new work by an extremely talented playwright! Tickets are $20 and can be purchased by calling 646-329-6588.