A rich and dynamic programme using Kindness to inspire and educate your students or community.
Kindness is largely a verbatim play based on the testimony of Hungarian survivor Susan Pollack OBE, aged only 13 when she was sent to the notorious Auschwitz-Birkenau in the summer of 1944. Interwoven are a number of complementary narratives, including that of Mala Zimetbaum and Edek Galinski whose stunning love story and spiritual resistance is painted across a backdrop of one of the darkest periods in human history. Kindness has been described as “beautiful and empowering” and “compelling and emotive”. It promises that Susan’s legacy of the Holocaust stays with you for a very long time.
Our first professional play was Meaning – verbatim in that it was based on the writings of Viktor Frankl, his life and philosophies. Meaning was an ensemble piece that first dipped a toe into building beautiful choreography into our plays. It was centred around Frankl’s experiences at Auschwitz, and integrated puppetry and song into the one hour performance. It had a limited but very successful run in schools running alongside education programmes that were developed to enrich student understandings of the history of the Holocaust beyond Auschwitz.
Our second play, Butterflies, was a research led devised piece about the children of Theresienstadt whose stories ultimately came to an end at the camp that Frankl had survived. The play was based on letters, poetry and pictures from the children who, through the support of artists, musicians, acts of faith and quiet resistance, were kept alive in their hopes and dreams. ‘Butterflies’ was our first youth apprentice cast play that later went on to perform for IHRD at the European Parliament in Brussels.
Under The Apple Tree was a natural successor to Butterflies. It told the story of Irene Sendler and the coordinated rescue of thousands of children from the Warsaw ghetto by both Jewish and non-Jewish resistance workers. Using physical theatre and ensemble work, a number of original pieces of music and an historic musical score, it wove the story of Sendler – a Catholic Social worker – into the broader story of the children whose lives were forever changed – but saved.
Fragile Fire was the beautiful culmination of all the methodology and technique that had built through the development of our work. Stunning physical theatre, academic research based methodology and working with recorded testimony as well as devised practice to complement the verbatim material. The play saw five actors tell the incredible story of resistance that ultimately led to the Warsaw ghetto uprising with a visually striking production including three revolving scaffolding towers, a stunning musical score and a multirole play that was as inspiring and educational as it was exhausting to watch! It had 5 star reviews wherever it went and really consolidated both our principles and practices in production of original works and accompanying educational resources.
Kindness: A Legacy of the Holocaust
Voices continues to this day to create original works based on these guiding principles and values. We are often approached by other writers and companies to see / support other works and we are delighted to receive any pieces that come our way. We can’t promise to have time to offer feedback but we are delighted to hear about other work. We have never staged anyone else’s plays, published or otherwise – but never say never! Maybe one day. In the meantime, stay in touch and we’d love to hear from you if you are a creative interested in joining the Voices team!
Our apprenticeship scheme allows young and aspiring 18 – 24 year olds to develop their skills as actors, educators, designers, technicians, writers and musicians.
Our apprentice cast productions perform in venues alongside our experienced professionals. Our apprentice members have gone on to work in professional theatre, music and dance, into teaching and education – indeed one of our original apprentices, having completed her university degree, now works for the education department at the Houses of Parliament.
A high quality theatre production that provides a powerful starting point for Holocaust curriculum objectives as well as giving tremendous value to Drama departments who may already be using Mark Wheeller as a set text or need to complete theatre review coursework. Includes a post performance Q&A with Cate and the actors addressing any aspects of the play, Susan’s story, Holocaust history that the whole audience can benefit from.
We can bring you a day of dynamic and exciting work tailored to your needs by organising performances or professional development days.