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Hello From AJT

Dear Friends,

I want to share a little bit of my summer with you. I just got back from Israel and as always I am blown away by the people and the creativity there. One thing I did was to meet with some theatre people and cultural arts people in the Foreign Ministry Office. They are very interested in seeing bridges built between the theatre outside of Israel and theatre from within. The theatre scene there is so vibrant with performances and plays of all kinds and it would do us well to develop and enlarge those connections. If you, the members of AJT, have ideas about ways of doing that, please let me know.

I went to St. Louis this past summer to be at planning meetings at the New Jewish Theatre with Artistic Director Kathleen Sitzer and her work-group, for the 2016 AJT conference on April 3-6. This host committee is one of the most activated groups of people I have seen in many years working on our conference. The committee members are some of the best theatre people in St. Louis and ideas were flying. I don't want to jump the gun on announcing what they have in store, so stay tuned.

This summer I was at one of the most incredible experimental theatre centers in the country, Double Edge Theatre. Joanna Caplan a resident artist at Double Edge, an AJT 2015,Theatremacher Fellow and a member of our AJT Board, hosted me. Double Edge is doing some of the most mythical theatre I have seen since Andre Serban and his work at La Mama. I think of it as midrashic theatre even as it uses stories from Latin America in the spectacle they just performed "Once A Blue Moon." They have also done work with Jewish, biblical, and Holocaust themes - including being inspired by Chagall's vision in their piece "The Grand Parade."

And finally, I attended a fine arts community that is starting up called Art Kibbutz on Governors Island in New York. I was invited to do a performing identity workshop there and the Executive Director, Eszter Margit is really doing a great job connecting with artists who want to meld their Jewish identities with their artistic drives.

I hope your summer was as enlightening as mine and I want you to know that I am proud to be your president. As we move forward with AJT, as a catalyst and connector for Jewish theatre of all kinds, I see my job as representing you -- to be that connector and to build the Jewish theatre community that is as diverse as it is vibrant.

Please strongly consider coming to the 2016 AJT Conference. Not only is it a way for all of us to be together in the crazy Jewish theatre world that we have created, but it is way for you to make the connections I am making. Believe me, you will not regret it.

Have a great new year, a sweet one that is fulfilling and one that is filled with passion for the work we do!


David Chack

President of Association for Jewish Theatre

AJT Board

President, David Y. Chack; Vice President, Doug Brook; Vice President, Hank Kimmel

Vice President, Aaron Henne; Treasurer, Susan Lodish; Secretary, Kathleen Sitzer. Sara Bookin-Weiner, Jordana Halpern, Ronda Spinak, Joanna Caplan, Noemi Schlosser

Ex Officio non-voting: Moti Sandak, Ellen Schiff, Robert Skloot. Honorary Member - Theodore Bikel. Immediate Past President, Mira Hirsch. Coordinator, Eli Taylor.