What's it about?
Jewish parents trying to keep their daughter from dripping over the mistakes they have done in the past and continue to do.
What'd I experience?
Finally, my semester is over! No more finals or annoying professors to deal with.... until February. Surprisingly, I've been pretty bored not being in school, and so watching a show is really going to change my mood. God of Vengeance, please!
After I got my ticket I was standing in a very crowded room full of elderly people, which was making me think a lot about how -- "This will be me in a couple of decades," "I don't want to get old! " "Why are they all looking at me?" I was seriously being looked at, up and down. I felt so uncomfortable. I just wanted the door of the theatre to open but it felt like I was waiting forever!
This is the very first time, in a long while, that I'm not sitting in the front... how is this possible? So... God Of Vengeance is in Yiddish and not English. This was not in the advertisement! It most likely was but I was just oblivious and now I'm... Well, I wasn't too distraught, they have subtitles.
The first character comes out and his name is Yankl Tchaptchovitch... wow! And I complain about people having trouble pronouncing my name. I'm done complaining after today. The next one to come out is Sarah, who is Yankl’s wife. A nontraditional Jewish family who owns a brothel business under their home. What I didn’t know, in the beginning, was that Sarah was actually a prostitute and Yankl married her. They had one kid, Rifkele.
Rifkele looks like the perfect daughter. She always says and does the right things. Everything about her is ideal. This looks very fishy to me, no one could be this good. Rifkele is Yankl’s little girl, but he has this constant fear that his and his wife’s sins are going to affect Rifkele. Can a parent’s mistakes affect their children in the long run?!
I wasn't too sure how to answer that, however, in this case I must say that it did. Since Rifkele was young, she was being taught how to be a perfect/pure Jewish wife for the future. But having a brothel right under her room is a gateway to a lot of problems. Turns out Rifkele has been having sexual relations with another woman in the brothel, Manke. She and Rifkele started as good friends but things escalated when they shared a kiss. I didn’t think much of this kiss because I have seen women kiss on stage before. But this ends up being very significant.
Parents have this unbelievable instinct of finding out everything their child has done. As a result, Yankl and Sarah find out about what Rifkele has done. I remember when I used to get in trouble and all my parents would say is, "Arturo, we are not mad... just disappointed." The speech given to Rifkele went very different because she was sent to the brothel house... but how can you do that to your own daughter??
That was what I kept asking myself, but I never got the answer and the show was over.
The kiss, that’s all I'm thinking about on my way home. This one kiss led to so much trouble for this family. While researching information about this play I came across something. This play was premiered on Broadway in 1923, which showcased the first Lesbian kiss on a stage, ever. Hm.
Want to see it?
New Yiddish Rep.
@ La Mama
thru Jan. 22
What'd you experience?
Let PXP know in the comments below...