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2013 - 2014 Events

Journeys, Memories, Echoes

Recorded events are available via:

October 16: The Mischling-Experience – with Marianne Burkenroad Schweitzer

Marianne Burkenroad Schweitzer shares her memories of growing up as a "half-Jew" in Nazi Berlin. The grand-daughter of baptized Jews on her father's side, Marianne was raised as a Christian and for a long time unaware of her Jewish ancestry. Her close friendship with an avid supporter of National Socialism who happened to spy for the Gestapo would soon land the family in trouble. Marianne's older sister was arrested for conspiracy to commit high treason and sent to a concentration camp. Her father suffered a similar fate during Kristallnacht. The outbreak of war forever divided the family, with some members staying behind in Germany and others leaving for England and then the United States.

November 6: Hidden Letters: Documenting the Destruction of Dutch Jewry – with Deborah Slier-Shine and Ian Shine

The book Hidden Letters contains a treasure trove of letters and postcards accidentally discovered during demolition work in Amsterdam in 1997. Written by an eighteen year-old Dutch-Jewish boy by the name of Philip "Flip Slier, the letters document the ongoing destruction of Dutch Jewry that Flip experienced firsthand. The editors spent seven years researching Flip's final years, a journey that took them from the Dutch forced labor camps of Voigt and Westerbork to Sobibor in Poland.

Deborah Slier-Shine, formerly editor for Penguin, Random House and Macmillan, is the founder and CEO of Star Bright Books and the author of several best-selling children's books. Ian Shine works as an MD at Cambridge and a prolific author.

Link: Hidden Letters: Documenting the Destruction of Dutch Jewry

February 19: Back to Dudelsheim: Conquering the Fatherland – with Larry Greenbaum

A native of Dudelsheim, Hesse-Darmstadt, Larry Greenbaum was one of only four Jews to emigrate to the United States after Kristallnacht, the pogrom that marked the beginning of the end for Germany's Jews. Seven years after emigration, Greenbaum returned to Germany, this time as a member of the invading Allies. The Allied advance brought him back to Dudelsheim, his old home town. At this presentation, Greenbaum recalls what it meant to grow up Jewish in Nazi Germany, his experience as a refugee in the United States, and his memorable return to his own home. He will be interviewed by Anne-Clara Schenderlein, a doctoral candidate in modern German history, with an emphasis on Jewish emigration.

Link: Back to Dudelsheim: Conquering the Fatherland

March 12: Survival and Death: What Made you Know the Nazis Would Kill you? – with Peter Gourevitch

Sponsored by Charlie Robins

In this talk Peter Gourevitch explores the dynamics of "lessons to be learned" from the Holocaust. Drawing on the experience of a grandmother who fled and survived in the United States, and an uncle who stayed and died in Auschwitz, he discusses information that made some perceive the danger and others to ignore it. What information made his grandmother sense the danger, and her brother to ignore it? A professor of political science at UC San Diego, Gourevitch emphasizes the role political activism played in alerting some individuals to the impending threat from the destruction of democracy.

Link: Survival and Death: What Made you Know the Nazis Would Kill you?

April 8: "Shpil We Must!" The Relationship Between the Jewish and Roma Musicians During the Holocaust – with Yale Strom

How did Roma musicians experience the Holocaust? What was their interaction with Jewish musicians in the camps and in the forests? These and other questions will be addressed by Yale Strom, one of the world's leading scholar-ethnographer-artists of klezmer music and history. A violinist, composer, filmmaker, photographer and playwright, Strom was a pioneer among Klezmer revivalists. Over the past thirty years, he has conducted 75 research expeditions in Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans. In his own compositions he combines klezmer with Hasidic nigunim, Rom, jazz, classical, Balkan, and Sephardic motifs. Strom will be introduced by professor Deborah Hertz, the Herman Wouk Chair in Jewish Studies.

Link: "Shpil We Must!" The Relationship Between the Jewish and Roma Musicians During the Holocaust

May 7: Porrajmos: The Romanies and the Holocaust – with Ian Hancock

The Holocaust claimed anywhere between 500,000 and 1.5 million Romani lives, a tragedy the Romani people and Sinti refer to as the Porrajmos, or "the Devouring." Notwithstanding the scope of the catastrophe, the Romani genocide was often ignored or minimized until Ian Hancock and others exposed this misfortune. A Romani-born British citizen, activist, and scholar, Hancock has done more than anyone to raise awareness about the Romani people during World War II. For the past four decades, he has been a professor of English and linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is the director of the Romani Studies program and the Romani Archives and Documentation Center. He has represented the Romani people at the United Nations, served as a member of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, and is currently a state commissioner on the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission. Hancock will be introduced by Yale Strom, an expert in Jewish and Roma culture during and after the Holocaust.

Link: Porrajmos: The Romanies and the Holocaust

May 14: Still Alive: A Holocaust Girlhood Remembered – with Ruth Klüger

Sponsored by Phyllis and Dan Epstein

Ruth Klüger was eleven years old when she and her mother were deported from her native Vienna to Theresienstadt, the Nazis' "model ghetto." Twelve grueling months later, she was deported to Auschwitz. After the war, Klüger emigrated to the United States where she became a professor of German literature. In 1992 she published her memoir Still Alive, one of the most successful and unconventional Holocaust memoirs ever written. The recipient of numerous prestigious awards, Klüger lives in Irvine, California, where she continues to write. At this event, she will be introduced by history professor Frank Biess.

The World Premiere of LIGHT FALLING DOWN by Aimee Greenberg at The Brooks Theatre, Oceanside

Oceanside Theatre Company is proud to present the world premiere of LIGHT FALLING DOWN by Aimee Greenberg and directed by Oceanside Theatre Company Artistic Director Christopher Williams opening in October!

Set against the backdrop of WWII in Poland (1942) and present day California, Ms. Greenberg's play is a haunting and illuminating drama inspired in part by the true stories of female survivors of the Shoah, now living in Southern California. The story follows a young woman, Alice, who finds a young Jewish girl hiding underground in her garden. Alice is faced with the decision to either turn her in to the Nazis or to keep her hidden in the dark. But Alice has a secret, too. Intertwined is the story of Tuvia, her daughter Ava, and her neighbor Eva in California today. LIGHT FALLING DOWN explores the nature of survival, the human spirit, and forgiveness.

"In LIGHT FALLING DOWN, Aimee Greenberg has written a moving and original piece of theatre" - David Elllenstein, Artistic Director of North Coast Repertory Theatre

Previews and Performances at The Brooks Theatre, 217 North Coast Hwy, Oceanside, CA 92054 include: October 23 at 7:30 p.m. (Preview); October 25, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. (Preview); October 26, 2013 at 7:30 p.m. (Opening Night); October 27, 2013 at 2:00 p.m.; October 30, 2013 at 7:30 p.m.; November 1, 2013 at 7:30 p.m.; November 2, 2013* at 7:30 p.m.; November 3, 2013 at 2:00 p.m.

November 2: Special Event – Oceanside Theatre Company Fundraiser

Carlsbad resident Aimee Greenberg has been creating, directing and performing onstage for nearly three decades. A native New Yorker, Aimee trained with theatre icons Sandy Meisner, Wynn Handman and Stella Adler. She has worked with Playwright's Horizon, La Mama, Seattle Repertory Theatre, and Theatre for the New City among others. In 1990, Greenberg founded the Los Angeles based HEIJERA productions presenting works in the United States, Europe and Asia. Locally, Aimee's work has been seen at the former Sushi, (Dark Moon of Lilith, Phases of the LOON) and most recently at Space 4 Art, where she premiered "Occupy the Rice Fields." LIGHT FALLING DOWN was recently presented as a staged reading at the JCC and the Ion Theatre. Your $50 ticket will include dinner, drinks, seating at that evening's performance of LIGHT FALLING DOWN, raffle tickets and dessert/coffee during a post show talk-back with the author Aimee Greenberg.

For further information, contact Janene Shepherd 760-805-4213 or email

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