King of the Jews
King of the Jews Tickets

King of the Jews Tickets

HERE Arts Center, New York
Oct 24, 2023 - Nov 19, 2023
2 hours & 30 minutes with intermission
This profound new play brings the 1979 novel to life starring Richard Topol (Indecent).

About King of the Jews

One night after curfew in the Astoria Café, a group of waiters and cooks and entertainers, along with a spare rabbi or two, are forced by the German occupiers to form a Judenrat, a group of self-governing Jews who will thenceforth govern the lives—and determine the deaths—of their co-religionists in the ghetto that surrounds them. In that first act, they are forced, at a terrible cost, to choose their Elder, who is based on the true-life character Chaim Rumkowski, leader of the Lodz Ghetto in Poland.

In the second act, eighteen months later, we see the Judenrat and its leader confronted with the terrible moral dilemma of having to decide: Who among their fellow Jews is to live and who is to die? It is not a choice that any human being in a world that has not become morally unhinged and absurd can make. And yet they must. In the madness and double-dealing and even humor that ensues, we join these ordinary mortals as they plumb the depths of the unimaginable that history has thrust upon them.

KING OF THE JEWS is based on Leslie Epstein’s novel, published in 1979 and directed by Alexandra Aron. Cast includes Richard Topol, Rachel Botchan, David Deblinger, John Little, Daniel Oreskes, Allen Lewis Rickman, JP Sarro, Dave Shalansky, Jonathan Spivey, Erica Spyres, Wesley Tiso and Robert Zukerman.

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16 and older