BETWEEN HEAVEN AND EARTH is an anthology of four one act plays based on the Yiddish short stories of the late nineteenth century Jewish author, I. L. Peretz.
BONTSHE SHVAYG (Bontshe the Silent). Throughout his hard and painful life on earth, Bontshe Shvayg is silent; his existence insignificant. But when he dies, the Heavenly Shofar trumpets his arrival in Heaven. Offered anything his heart desires for his quiet and saintly behavior on earth, Bontshe Shvayg’s humble request dismays his Defending Angel and stuns the Heavenly Court of Paradise. (4 males; 4 females)
WHAT IS A SOUL? Three very different teachers—a stern, by-the-book Talmud teacher, a mystical Khasidic
rebbe, and a modern, “freethinking” Yiddish writing tutor—compete for the heart, mind, and soul of a young Jewish boy. (4 males; 3 females)
EMPTY HANDED. When the White Angel arrives to escort the saintly Rivke-Beyle’s soul to Heaven, she is surprised to find the Dark Angel from “the other place” already waiting beside the dying woman’s bed. Rivke-Beyle’s choice of which angel to accompany will surprise and challenge the thinking of your audience. (1 male; 2 females)
IF NOT STILL HIGHER A Litvak, a skeptical Jew from Lithuania, is determined to find out where the Rebbe of Nemirov really goes when he suddenly disappears each year between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. What the Litvak discovers about tzedakah—good deeds—changes his life forever. (3 males; 2 females)
Adapted for the stage by Scott Hilton Davis. Appropriate for middle school, high school, and adult audiences. Published by Jewish Storyteller Press.
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