Rank and File: The Story of an Overlooked Nurse and Midwife

Poetry voices speak out; a variety show of songs and comedy gets in gear.

The stars of 'Night of Stars' by the Tzfat Community Theater Group.
Howard Schechter

UNASSUMING HEROES: Modi’in’s Women In Theater group will present the premiere of the musical “Raquela: The Birth of Israel” next week. The play is inspired by the true story of Jerusalem-born Raquela Prywes, a nurse and midwife. “The story of Raquela is a reminder of the sacrifices people made in order to live in our country and create our state,” says executive producer Tamar Krantman-Weiss. “We hope to inspire people to follow in the footsteps of these unassuming heroes,” adds director and playwright Pnina Fredman-Schechter, a cofounder of the group with Krantman-Weiss who has taught at NYU and has worked Off-Broadway. Performances on Wednesday and Thursday are in English and for women only. For more information go to www.womenintheater.com.

WINNING POEMS: Voices Israel, the English-language poetry society, announced the winning entries of the 2015 Reuben Rose Poetry Competition this week. First prize went to Johnmichael Simon for his poem “Romantic,” followed by Helen Bar-Lev (“Samson’s Saga”) and Breindel Lieba Kasher (“Father and Daughter”) – all members of Voices Israel. The three-judge panel, composed of John Smelcer, who lives in the United States, and Bill Freedman and Gretti Izak in Israel, rated the poems anonymously. Honorable mentions included Elizabeth Claverie, Ricky Friesem, Sheila Golburgh Johnson, Reuven Goldfarb, Yonah Lavery-Yisraeli, Rochelle Mass, Jed Myers, Judith R. Robinson, Jane Seitel and Patti Tana. The winning poems can be read at www.voicesisrael.com/winningpoems2015.htm.

STAR-SPRINKLED PERFORMANCES: The Tzfat Community Theater Group kicked off its premier season with “Night of Stars” at the Khan of the White Donkey, a variety show “sprinkled with performance pieces, poetic readings songs and comedy routines,” according to artistic producer Howard Schechter, a former New Yorker and professional actor. The group is composed of native-English speakers save for Ethiopian-born musician Tadessa Tarakey. “This is one of the missions of the theater group, to integrate the Ethiopian and Bnei Menashe communities living here," Schechter told Haaretz. “The company represents the first resident Theater troupe in many years and plans to mount a full production in the spring.” Shelley Bernstein is artistic director and Keren Horowitz is executive producer. For more info or to get involved, contact Howard at Hschech104@yahoo.com.

Rank and File was compiled by Steven Klein.

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