Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Super Jew!: A Purim Family Show
StorahSteps at the 14th Street Y

By Jessica Bay Blyweiss

It was that time of the year again last weekend, the time when we rock our favorite frocks, eat and be merry. Wait, I think I actually do that most of the year, but this time it was a little more entertaining because I was surrounded by super heroes, princess, animals, pirates, butterflies, dragons and colorful people. It was Purim and I had the joy along with Naomi Less to Maven Super Jew!, Storahtelling’s family Purim show at the 14th St Y.

We had done the show last year for a very small crowd from Natan (www.natan.org) at the City Winery and now prepared for our stint in a bigger arena. Little did I know that we would be cramming as many people as could fit into the theater of the Y. It was a joyous thing to see so many families joining us, with so many amazing children in tow, not to mention all the Ageless Kids who came to support us. The children colored and illustrated parts of three chapters from the Megillah while getting situated that were then attached together and read by the lovely Naomi during the show. It was a little overwhelming at first knowing that a few adjustments had to be made on the spot due to the amount of people but we started off on our SuperJew Journey.

Even in the darkest times, there are so any things to be happy about. In the wake of earthquakes, wars and bad economies we can still find things to be happy and grateful about. Being together with so many people in a beautiful space getting to read from the Megillah was something to be grateful for. The theater filled with music and the sounds of children chattering asking questions. Parents were getting chuckles here and there.

We were able to bring a good amount of the children on stage to show off their wonderful costumes - even a Queen Esther who pointed out that, yes, she did make her own crown. I was a little jealous as it was almost my turn to take on the role of Esther and save all my people from the Evil Haman (aahfhhggrrrgrgrhff!!!) Esther was afraid to be who she was. On the inside she was a Jew and a scared young woman. On the outside she was beautiful Persian Queen and she looked brave. Her costume helped her through a rough time but in the end she wasn't afraid to be who she was and because of that saved all her people.

When we asked at the end of the story what miracles the kids had seen with their miracle goggles on, it was just that: that Esther had saved her people, and she took responsibility for who she was.

Overall, even in a semi-chaotically filled theater of children, with groggers, snacking on Hamentashen, our message got across. After the show was over and I was mingling with the crowd some shy kids came over and started lingering by me. I looked at their parents and they said that the kids wanted to give me a hug goodbye (that made it all worth it). If we can entertain as well as teach and make the children excited to attend our shows and want to come back over and over, then we've accomplished our goal, and taken responsibility for our community and our children.

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