Tel: (312) 857-3859
Email: ben@alljewishtheatre.org
AJT is now an Alliance!AJT 2017 ConferenceAJT Special Achievements

AJT is now an Alliance!

AJT is now the Alliance for Jewish Theatre! What's in a name? Plenty...

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AJT 2017 Conference

Join us Oct 22-25 in Boston, for our conference... This year, themed around Collaboration.

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AJT Special Achievements

AJT recognized several members at our 2016 conference in St. Louis.

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Art Levine

Playwright, Lyricist, Composer, Arranger

4713 6th Street South
Arlington, VA 22204
703 486 0070
alevine@berklee.net

www.calleduptolife.co

A graduate of Berklee College of Music, Art Levine worked for several years as a studio arranger in Nashville. In 1997 he won the International Zionist Songwriting Contest. His klezmer musical Called Up To Life: The Legends of the Baal Shem Tov received its first reading in 1999. Its first production in 2010 sold out seven out of nine performances. His second musical Festival of Lightshas yet to be produced. Art lives in Arlington, VA

Play Roster

Called Up to Life: The Legends of the Baal Shem Tov

Musical – score or pre-recorded background available.
Running time: 2 hours and fifteen minutes with intermission.
Unit set
Cast Requirements: 7 men 3 women. All actors are double cast except one.

Synopsis: The action takes place in a colony of havarim in Livorno, Italy. The time is a Friday evening in the 1780s—more than twenty years after the death of the Baal Shem Tov, aka the BSHT. A traveler appears and is invited to spend shabbos. It is soon discovered that this stranger is Rabbi Simon, former personal assistant to the Baal Shem Tov and reputed to know more stories of the BSHT than anyone else.

When asked to repeat stories of the BSHT, Rabbi Simon suddenly goes blank. The havarim repeat the stories they know, hoping to encourage Rabbi Simon. In repeating these stories, they outline the biographical history of the BSHT. They are unsuccessful in sparking Rabbi Simon’s memory. By the end of shabbos, they’ve recited all their stories and Rabbi Simon hasn’t said a thing. Humiliated, he leaves. But suddenly, he returns with a long forgotten tale so mysterious that even he has no idea of its meaning. At this point, the Rosh Yeshiva speaks up and offers an explanation. All matters of importance are resolved.

Festival of Lights: A Tale of Hanukah

Musical – score or pre-recorded background available.
Running time: 1 hour fifteen minutes
Unit set
Cast Requirements: 7 adults, (4 men, 3 women)
2 “teenagers,” 1 male, one female
10 boys and girls between ages 8-11 (The children are
non-speaking parts). All adult actors are double cast,
except one.

Synopsis: A building inspector, a government official, a lawyer and an entrepreneur are in a shuttered synagogue downtown, waiting for the last surviving members to take ownership of the property. Thanks to the lifetime memberships their grandparents secretly bought for them, the last surviving members turn out to be teenaged siblings, Josh and Marcy Edelman. Inspecting the synagogue, the lights go out. When the lights return, the adults are gone and the angel Sandalfon appears. Sandalfon, we learn, is the angel charged with escorting Jewish prayers to heaven. It was his job to escort a minyan of prayers from this synagogue. But the congregation never mustered that last minyan and they disbanded, leaving Sandalfon trapped in the building.

He cannot leave until he escorts a minyan of prayers. Through Sandalfon, the kids have a chance to “see” their ancestors. As each ancestor does a good deed or utters a hope or prayer, the personification of that hope or prayer materializes. One by one the ancestors tell their stories and Josh and Marcy realize they are now owners of the synagogue in more ways than one. One by one the personifications appear and joyfully Sandalfon realizes he finally has a full minyan of prayers to escort. Minyan in tow, he leaves. The lights go back on and the adults reappear. Testing the veracity of Sandalfon’s story, the kids find a memento. The teenagers make a decision to carry on the work of their ancestors in bettering the world.

Conference

AJT’s 2017 Annual Conference COLLABORATION October 22-25, 2017 Boston, Massachusetts AJT’s annual conference, in partnership with Jewish Arts Collaborative Boston, presents its annual conference – its first under the name […]

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Membership

Join or renew your AJT membership now for 2017! Add 2018 now, at a discount! Not sure if it’s time to renew? Check with Eli Taylor, AJT Coordinator (eli@alljewishtheatre.org) To […]

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Support AJT

Your assistance supports the production of Jewish theatre around the world. Please make a tax-deductible donation today. AJT is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation.

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Individuals

Check out our members – a cross-section of playwrights, directors, artistic directors, dramaturgs, critics, and other practitioners of Jewish theatre: Members: Want to update your page? Don’t have a page […]

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Theatres

Check out our member theatres – a wide array of performing arts organizations around the world, with a focus or interest in Jewish theatre. Members: Want to update your page? […]

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