Play Updates

The play is now in development for a theatrical production and some of the new scenes and songs have been incorporated into the original version. The play package now includes:

David Gard, The Trenton Times 
Previous version of the play performed  at Passage Theatre

  • The new, expanded script with additional optional scenes and songs.
  • Sheet music and demo CD's of three new songs by Grammy nominated composer and lyricist; John Forster.

The new songs are: That's What I Love About... (a moving vocation of the joy-- and significance-- of the holiday season), We Are Denmark (a compelling rendition of how the Christian Danes came together to save their fellow Jewish citizens from the Nazis, in 1943) and  Chutzpah (a witty and rousing description of the efforts of Margaret MacDonald, director of The Montana Association of Churches, to convince the citizens of Billings to have a little “chutzpah” and take a stand against the acts of hate occuring in their town).

photo by Ray Belanger, performance at Saint Martha Catholic School, Sarasota Florida

On March 25th and 26th of 2009, St. Martha Catholic School, in Sarasota, Florida, presented Paper Candles to the school community and the community at large, including members of local churches and synagogues.

Social Studies teacher Maureen Belanger coordinated the events related to the play and invited local Holocaust survivors to speak to her eighth graders who were studying the Holocaust (the events of Kristallnacht and the rescue of the Danish Jews from Nazi occupied Denmark are discussed and/or reenacted in the play). Tammie Schnitzer, one of the main characters in Paper Candles, visited the school along with Janice Cohn, the play's author. They spoke with children of all ages, at every grade level about the play and the actual events upon which the play is based.

The production was directed by Catherine Randazzo, and enacted by a talented, enthusiastic cast. Bishop Frank J. Dewane attended the premiere performance, and was so moved he later asked the cast to make a special presentation about the play at the annual memorial service commemorating Yom Hashoah, which is hosted by the Diocese of Venice, Florida.

Performance at Whitwell Middle School, Whitwell, Tennessee

This past November 9th and 10th of 2007 Paper Candles, in its entirety, was performed by students at the Whitwell Middle School, in Whitwell, Tennessee. You may be familiar with the wonderful documentary, Paper Clips, which tells the story of how the school and community came together to commemorate – in a very unique way – the memory of the 6 million Jews who perished during the Holocaust. The memorial museum, which students and townspeople created, was re-dedicated on November 10th, 2007. and Paper Candles was performed at that time.  It was a very moving experience for everyone involved and we were truly honored that our play was a part of that special day. 

Performance of "Chutzpah" song at Not In Our Town Conference in Bloomington, Illinois

October 6, 7, and 8th of 2007, educators and community leaders from across the country gathered together in Bloomington, Illinois to share what they have done in their own communities to combat prejudice and intolerance. They all belong to the Not In Our Town movement which was inspired, in part, by the 1993 events in Billings. Patrice O’Neill and Rhian Miller, who produced Not In Our Town, the award-winning documentary about those events, organized the conference. We were thrilled that excerpts from Paper Candles were performed for the conference’s participants on  October 6th and 7th of 2007, and that the response was so enthusiastic.


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