Shell Factory’s Players Circle Performing Arts Center announced its partnership with the Jewish Federation of Lee and Charlotte Counties and YIa ?? i ?? Jewish (a division of the Yiddishkayt Initiative) to launch a series of Jewish-themed programs at PLAYERS CIRCLE.
The first production of this exciting partnership will be JOE PAPP AT THE BALLROOM, which will perform for three performances on Friday, June 25 at 8 p.m. EST and Saturday, June 26 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. EST. Tickets $ 25- $ 35. The concert version of the piece with all of Joe Papp’s dialogue was adapted by Avi Hoffman and Susan Papp-Lippman. With original musical arrangements by Stanley Silverman, musical direction by Phil Hinton and stars by Mr. Hoffman.
Legendary theater producer Joe Papp was born Yosl Papirofsky in Brooklyn NYC to Jewish immigrant parents. He would become the visionary founder of Shakespeare in the Park and The Public Theater in New York. Producing among thousands of shows the original Broadway production of HAIR and A CHORUS LINE. He has given only one public concert in his illustrious career, where he recounted his Brookyln Yiddish upbringing, controversial political struggles and revolutionary creative process. This concert sums up the brilliant life of the greatest icon of American theater of the 20th century.
In this musical performance, world famous actor and CEO of the Yiddishhayt Intiative, Avi Hoffman adapts and recreates this singular concert given by Joe Papp at the Ballroom in 1978. Hoffman, who has worked in theaters across the country and the world, notably working with PLAYERS CIRCLE producers Carrie Lund and Robert Cacioppo during their tenure as founder and director of FLORIDA REP for 20 years. Mr. Hoffman first gained national attention over 25 years ago with his award-winning show “Avi Hoffman. Too Jewish?”, Which aired on Off-Broadway and aired on public television, reaching millions of viewers. Avi recently received Congressional recognition, was invited to the Vatican to meet Pope Francis, and was inducted into the Bronx Jewish Hall of Fame for his lifelong work in advancing Jewish culture, the Yiddish language and raising awareness of the Holocaust through the Yiddishkayt Initiative, Inc. (Ia ?? i ?? LoveJewish.org.) Avi was recently nominated for a NY Drama Desk Best Actor Award for her Yiddish-language performance of Willy Loman in DEATH OF A SALESMAN.
“We are thrilled to this partnership with Avi and YIa ?? i ?? JUIF! At Players Circle, we love presenting a wide variety of plays from classical music, burlesque, Broadway revues, country music to comedy. So when Avi told us about his specifically Jewish thematic programs that he plans to present on the east coast of Florida, we invited him to bring his work to The Players Circle, with JOE PAPP AT THE BALLROOM being our first show! ” Says Carrie Lund, Founder and Producer of Players Circle. “What’s more exciting is the additional partnership formed with the JEWISH FEDERATION of Lee and Charlotte Counties! They are helping us promote the event and are very excited about the entertainment possibilities for the southern Jewish community. West Florida in the future “
“The Jewish Federation is always excited about the opportunities to collaborate with our local arts and culture community. This partnership with Players Circle is a perfect fit and we urge our community to join us for JOE PAPP AT THE BALLROOM, ”said Jewish Federation Executive Director Alan Isaacs. “I’ve always enjoyed working with Bob and Carrie, and this opportunity to partner with the Players Circle and the Jewish Federation will help us get our important message of the beauty and depth of Jewish culture to a whole new audience,” Avi Hoffman said.
For tickets, call the box office at 239-800-3292. Or order online at Playerscircletheater.com. The Shell Factory Players Circle Performing Arts Center is located at 16554 North Cleveland Avenue, Ft Myers, FL 33903.