Israel Horovitz's play Lebensraum ("Living Space") will have its West Coast premiere at L.A.'s Fountain Theatre May 5, in a production directed by Seth Rozin, whose InterAct Theatre Company of Philadelphia staged an award-winning version of the play last year. The run, which began previews April 27, is through June 25.
Horovitz's drama, described as "a true original" by the Philadelphia Inquirer, is a "what-if" kind of story: what if the new German Chancellor, to atone for the Holocaust, invited 6 million Jews from around the world to "come home" and be fully integrated into German society -- with the assurance of new jobs, new homes and all of the benefits of citizenship.
The surrealistic fable interweaves a multitude of stories around 80 characters, all of whom are performed by three actors on a bare stage. The main focus is on a love story between an American boy and a German girl against a backdrop of growing national tension. Horovitz deals with such weighty questions as: How do we come to terms with history and, at the same time, put history behind us? How do we deal with the conflict between the need for forgiveness and the desire for revenge?
The Fountain Theatre production stars Roy Abramson, Paul O'Brien and Nichole Pelerine. Rozin has directed more than 20 productions at his InterAct Theatre Company, including the premieres of Lonely Planet and Black Russian. His staging of Lebensraum won the Inquirer's top ten production award last year.
Fountain Theatre is located at 5060 Fountain Ave. For tickets and information call (323) 663-1525. -- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent