"The Red Box," a play exploring the often ignored subject of homosexual persecution during the Holocaust, to be performed at Fairfield University

"A triumphant freshman outing for Mitchell...the passion and drive for Victor's will to survive always keeps the audience wanting more." - Mark Bowers, www.broadwayworld.com

Image: Red BoxFairfield University's Bennett Center for Judaic Studies presents a staged reading of the play, "The Red Box," a love story exploring the rarely discussed subject of homosexual persecution during the Holocaust, on Tuesday, March 27 at 7:30 p.m. Free and open to the public, the event will take place at the Wien Experimental Theater, located in the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts. To reserve a seat, call (203) 254-4000, ext. 2066.

"It is the only play that sheds light on the post-camp life of homosexual survivors," said playwright Jason Mitchell. "The story centers on Victor, who has never before told his story. It is Barbara, with a hidden agenda of her own, who gets Victor to confront his complicated past."

As the play "travels through his memory," Victor relives falling in love for the first time with a non-Jewish boy, coming to term with his sexuality, and examining his own family's dysfunction all while the Nazis rise to power. Victor shares a series of mistakes he's made from thinking with his heart, including running away to a decadent Berlin. Later imprisoned in a concentration camp, he is persecuted for being both gay and Jewish. His experiences cause him to question his relationships, spirituality and the atrocities of the camp.

"Each spring, the Bennett Center for Judaic Studies presents programming to remember those murdered during the Holocaust," said Ellen Umansky, Ph.D., the Carl and Dorothy Bennett Chair in Judaic Studies and Professor of Religious Studies. "This event will provide theatergoers with an inspiring portrait of how a survivor moved his life forward in the wake of unspeakable tragedy."

Mitchell often lectures on the topic of homosexual persecution during the Holocaust. His second play, "The Boys Upstairs," is a comedy that premiered at the 2009 New York International Fringe Festival to a sold-out run.

For more information about the Bennett Center for Judaic Studies and its programming, visit http://www.fairfield.edu/judaic/.

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on March 1, 2012

Vol. 44, No. 212

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