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The People Behind The Project

Irit Lavie Dagan
Irit is an Expressive and Creative Therapist, an M.A. in Drama Therapy, an actress, a teacher of acting, and a theater director. She graduated in drama from the Beit Zvi School for the Performing Arts and in literature from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

Irit has appeared at Habima - The National Theater of Israel and at the Theater for Children and Youth. She heads theater teaching at the Karev program for involvement in education.

Both of Irit's parents survived Auschwitz and the Escape Underground in Hungary and Transylvania, where they lost their families, Joseph and Levi, in the final year of the war.

Ezra Dagan
Ezra is an actor at the "Cameri Theater of Tel Aviv", a director and a lecturer in styled acting and mime at Haifa University. He is a graduate of the Renanim School Theater Class, the studio of Nula Chelton, and Art of Mime, in the studio of Claude Kipnis. Ezra acted in Habima - The National Theater of Israel, for fifteen years. He played the role of Rabbi Menasha Levertov in Stephen Spielberg's film, Schindler's List. Six of his relatives, members of the Pinto family who lived in Paris, perished at Auschwitz

"It takes courage to touch, to tell, and to present the stories of how people survived the holocaust. We found ourselves going through a protracted and gradual process, hesitant at first contact, then careful, and in time more confident as we crystallized, a theatrical - experiential way of giving testimony. Some third generation participants share the sense of grief and loss, but nevertheless contribute to the feeling of hope, joyousness, and continuation.

As we leave the theater, we are sure that here, it is different. The process is more important than the final result. We frequently felt as if we were leading a support group and also as if we were all members of a family. We met a group of adults and youth who had chosen to come and to stay with us, even though they had never been on stage before.

It started with care and concern. Should we approach and touch old pain and healed wounds? If so, how far should we go - perhaps not at all? We found ourselves carried away by love, byexcitement, by an enormous feeling of compassion, and by a burning will to establish a nurturing group which would create a stage adaptation of a painful and horrifying human document.