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The Invention of the Enemy:1938

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Nyumburu Cultural Center
Wednesday, January 30, 2013 - 7:00 PM

Written by ToninoTosto
Directed by Edward Gero
Translated and Adapted by Nello De Blasio and Edward Gero

Wednesday January 30, 7:00 PM

Nyumburu Cultural Center

Reception following

Sponsored by the Department of French and Italian

School of Languages, Literatures and Cultures

RSVP by January 22 to gfalvo@umd.edu     

 On the occasion of Remembrance Day 2013, the play 1938 L’invenzione del nemico will be launched on January 24 6:30 PM at the Embassy of Italy. The evening will include an illustrated lecture on the racial laws of 1938, which constitute the historical background on which events unfold and the lives of the characters entangle. Author Tonino Tosto will be at the presentation and excerpts from the play will be read and sung by Edward Gero and other notable Washington actors of the Shakespeare Theatre Company.  

  “We must never cease to exhort, above all our youth, not to be indifferent -- because indifference is the foundation upon which every abuse rests, every violation of human rights, every attack on liberty” (p. 15).  From Walter Veltroni’s Preface to The Invention of the Enemy:1938

1938. L'INVENZIONE DEL NEMICO (abstract)

As is typically the case with Tonino Tosto’s Gruppo Teatro Essere productions (see below), The Invention of the Enemy: 1938 deals with "heavy" themes, but at the same time it portrays life as actually experienced by ordinary people, as they live through extraordinary times, buoyed by the humor and afflicted by the absurdities that daily life can bring. In this play we see the intentional vilification of, and accompanying consequences for, Italy’s Jews as the Fascist regime converts them from fellow citizens, friends and neighbors into enemies of the state. While describing this process and its broad human cost can and does fill volumes, the play delivers its message reproducing events taken from the life of a single person -- a real person (prominent Jewish actor Arnoldo Foà) -- survivor of the period and protagonist in this “theater of memory.”

TONINO TOSTO

Born in Rome, Tonino Tosto is an Italian journalist, author, academic and dramaturgist. He is Vice President of the Università Popolare of Rome, where he teaches courses in theater. Concurrently he heads the Gruppo Teatro Essere (GTE), an ensemble focused on "theater of memory". Among his many fields of interest, a particular place is taken by the history and special traditions of the city and people of Rome. In 2004 he published 4 Giugno 1944, Roma Libera (June 4, 1944 Rome Is Free), a collection of stories and interviews on ordinary daily life in Rome during the nine months under Nazi occupation (September 1943 – June 1944)

EDWARD GERO

Edward Gero is Associate Professor at George Mason University's Theater Department. He is also a fourteen-time nominee and four-time recipient of the prestigious Helen Hayes Award for his work in Shakespeare, contemporary and musical theater. His 30 year performance career includes appearances in over 75 productions with the Shakespeare Theater Company, downtown Washington, as well as with Ford's Theater, The Studio Theater, Round House Theater, Arena Stage, Olney Theater Center, Theater J and other stages across the nation. In 2012 he completed a critically acclaimed production of John Logan's Tony Award-winning play Red at the Goodman Theater in Chicago and Arena Stage here in Washington and was Scrooge in A Christmas Carol at Ford's Theater. In 2011 he appeared in The Chosen by Chaim Potok at Arena Stage and as Salieri in Amadeus at the Round House Theater, Bethesda. In conjunction with Nello De Blasio, he has collaborated with Tonino Tosto to translate and adapt The Invention of the Enemy: 1938, which he directs, to the American stage

 

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