Tony Nominee Elizabeth Swados' Jewish Books Cooking Musical Will Debut May 20
By Andrew Gans
Tony nominee Elizabeth Swados' Jewish Books Cooking, a new musical based on Jewish-themed children’s books, will premiere at The JCC in Manhattan May 20 and play throughout New York City next month.
The Jewish Books Cooking team includes Sam Willmott (music director), Trevor Bachman (actor), Rachel Duddy (actor), Luke Marinkovich (actor), Andrew Martin (actor), Tess Niedermeyer (actor), Tessa Skara (actor), Rebecca Keren (general manager and producer), Michael Ulreich (stage manager) and Molly Deale (costume designer).
Among the books featured in the production are "Baxter, the Pig Who Wanted to be Kosher," by Laurel Snyder; "Mr. Mentch," by The Mamas; and "Beautiful Yetta – The Yiddish Chicken," by Daniel Pinkwater.
“I think I’ve read every Jewish children’s book ever written,” said Swados in a statement. “They are hot, and they rock. They cook. There are no limitations, and anything can happen. To transfer that to the stage takes the magic of children’s books to a new level of imagination and fun.
“The books that I selected for Jewish Books Cooking make me laugh, have imagination, have characters that talented young actors can play, and have stories about life that are good to know. Books can be transformative, and these are. They will be as alive on the stage as they are on the pages of the books themselves. This is really good theater and anyone will come away from it with the magic of these books.”
Performances at The JCC in Manhattan are scheduled for May 20 at 11 AM and 1 PM. Free tickets may be reserved by calling (646) 505-4444 or by visiting www.jccmanhattan.org.
Other public performances will take place at the Center for Jewish History June 3 at 11:30 AM; Kings Bay Y June 6 at 5 PM; Congregation Beth Elohim June 10 at 11 AM; and at The Carousel in Bryant Park June 17 at 1 PM. For more information on obtaining free tickets visit www.jewishbookscooking.org.
Elizabeth Swados earned Tony nominations for her work as composer, lyricist, book writer, choreographer and director of Runaways. She has penned book, music and lyrics for Alice in Concert as well as Lullabye and Goodnight, The Trilogy, Nightclub Cantata and Groundhog.
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