This year The National Yiddish Theatre-Folksbiene is honoring three families from the American Gathering at their annual Gala Variety Show in New York City. American Gathering Honorary Chairman Ernest W. Michel, the man whose dream in Auschwitz became reality at the World Gathering is the guest of honor and Prof. Elie Wiesel, Nobel Laureate, is the honorary chairman. The theme is “Fun Dor Tsu Dor” “From Generation to Generation, a Musical Celebration.”

Gathering Vice President Dr. Eva Fogelman (2G) and Danielle Sarna (3G), daughter of Gathering council members Mark and Anita Sarna, will be given Heritage Hemshekh Awards for fulfilling the pledge of acceptance given at the Gathering in Jerusalem in 1981. (Danielle was not yet a twinkle in her parents’ eyes–they met at that Gathering!) Our President Sam E. Bloch, Chairman Roman R. Kent and Sr. Vice President Max Liebmann are on the Host Committee and Jeff Wiesenfeld, another Gathering vice-president, is the chairman of the theater’s board of trustees. Jeanette Friedman is the journal chair.

“Though I am not a Yiddishist, or terribly fluent in Yiddish, I fully appreciate the beauty of the culture, the joy and drama of the theater and the pleasure it brings to survivors around the city,” said honoree Michel. “I have some showbiz people in my family, and so I can appreciate that The National Yiddish Theatre is the oldest theater in America, even in the world! It is a national treasure that must be kept alive as a vibrant piece of our cultural heritage.”

The Gala will take place on Monday evening, June 8 at New York City’s Town Hall. Curtain time is 7:30.

Freddy Roman, the Catskill comic is the emcee, and guests include Tony-Award winner Andrea Martin, Emmy-Award winner Fyvush Finkel, lyricist Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof, Umbrellas of Cherbourg), Dr. Ruth, Frank London, poet Vanessa Hidary, Daniella Rabbani, The Folksbiene Troupe and surprise guests. The performance is written and directed by Eleanor Reissa and musical direction is by Zalmen Mlotek, both 2Gs.

The Folksbiene Troupe is best known for their outreach performances to Holocaust survivor communities in the greater metropolitan area. Working with the City University, they bring performances to the areas where survivors live so that they can enjoy a taste of Yiddish. The theater also presents two main stage performances each year. This year Gimpl Tam won accolades from The New York Times in the fall, as did Shpiel! Shpiel! Shpiel! this spring. The Gala is simply the icing on the cake! For more information visit www.folksbiene.org