Sunday, March 13, 2011

Shakespeare in Action: The Diary of Anne Frank

Last week, my class and I went to see a theatrical version of The Diary of Anne Frank. The show was done by the company, Shakespeare in Action.

I know this story fairly well, having read it in junior high and taught it about 7 years ago to my middle school class in Brooklyn, but seeing it live on stage was still as moving as if reading it for the first time. The actors were so real, taking on the personas of the various characters in Anne's life. The woman who played Anne was amazing! She relayed Anne's innocence and youth so well that you truly thought this 20-something-year old was 13.

The play told the tragic story of Anne's family going into hiding during World War II in Amsterdam. Though the plot is somber and atrocious, the play also showed the personal side of each character, including the sweet first love between Anne and 16-year old Peter, who was also in hiding with his family.

Of course, no amount of lighter material could make the ending easier to digest. The final soliloquy by Otto Frank, Anne's father and only survivor out of the 8 people who were in hiding in that cramped attic, reduced me to a sobbing mess.

I hate that this story was ever written but am so glad that it continues to be told, especially in a world where such evils still plague humankind.


Erin {pughs' news} March 13, 2011 at 10:45 PM  

That story makes my heart hurt, every single time I am reminded of it. Not sure I could sit through the play. I hope that somehow, somewhere, Anne Frank knows the impact she made.

Ren- Lady Of The Arts March 14, 2011 at 2:21 AM  

read the book more than once and have visited the AF house in Amsterdam but I have never seen a theatrical rendition- I agree that stories like this need to be told.

bklyn76 March 14, 2011 at 11:53 AM  

@Erin, I hope so too.

@Ren, one of my students is visiting Anne's house this year and it was so great to see him get so excited about something so important.

Keep On S'myelin! March 16, 2011 at 3:17 PM  

One of my favourite books I read in high school. So sad that it was ever written, but you're right, a story that needs to be told.

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