Etty

Susan Stein in the role of Etty Hillesum. Etty is a touring one-woman play based on the diaries and letters of Etty Hillesum, adapted and performed by Susan Stein. Directed by Austin Pendleton.

Using only Etty Hillesum's words, Susan Stein's adaptation brings us to 1941 when Esther "Etty" Hillesum, a young Dutch Jewish woman, is living in Amsterdam. Upon the recommendation of her therapist, Julius Spier, she began a diary on 8 March 1941 to help her with her depression. Hoping to become a writer, the diaries take on their own literary life, presenting both Etty's growth as a writer and spiritual transformation. As deportations begin, she prepares for the three day journey eastward, she digs deeper into her soul to understand this piece of history and root out any hatred or bitterness, believing that humanity is the best and only solution for survival. Etty's words, insights and beliefs reach out from the Holocaust and allow us to see the power of hope and individual thought in the most extreme circumstances. In her gentle yet forthright way, Etty asks us not to leave her at Auschwitz but to let her have a bit of a say in what she hopes will be a new world.

ettyplay inc encompasses theatrical and educational experiences designed to challenge participants to reexamine assumptions about the Holocaust and explore issues of resistance, human rights, social justice and individual responsibility. We make available study guides to enrich an audience's experience of the play. Teaching artists work closely with educators to tailor to the needs of a given site a variety of writing and dramatic workshops. ettyplay teaching artists have also created a curriculum for teaching the Holocaust through the arts with a series of lessons that work independently or in conjunction with the play Etty.

The mission of ettyplay inc is to use the writings of Etty Hillesum to promote social justice, to challenge prejudice by examining the consequences of genocide and to enable participants to explore their own personal stories alongside Etty's, as they consider their role in the struggle for human rights.

Etty Interview

Portrait of Frank Stastio, host of The State of Things on North Carolina Public Radio. Frank Stasio, the host of The State of Things on North Carolina Public Radio - WUNC, interviewed Susan about Etty Hillesum and her play Etty on Thursday, March 14th, 2013. Susan also performed excerpts from her play. You can listen on The State of Things "The Hidden Diaries of a Young Jewish Woman" web page or stream the podcast directly.

How To Book Etty

You can book Etty at your venue. We perform Etty and lead discussions and workshops at primary schools, higher education institutions, community organizations, religious organizations, festivals, and nonprofit theaters. ettyplay inc travels to prisons throughout the United States and United Kingdom.

Please contact us if you are interested in learning more.

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Events
Date Location Description
2014 Dec 15 08:00 PM Association for Jewish (AJS) 46th Annual Conference, Baltimore Hilton, 401 West Pratt Street, Baltimore, MD, US - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion at 46th annual AJS conference.

2015 Jan 11 07:00 PM Westtown School, 975 Westtown Road, West Chester, PA, US - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion as part of the Shoemaker Visiting Lecture Series. Performance is open to the Westtown School community.

2015 Jan 24 14:30 Peterborough Quaker Meeting House, Peterborough, PE3 6AB UK - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion. For enquirers, contact +44 07525 793747.

2015 Jan 27 19:00 Lake District Holocaust Project (L.D.H.P.), Windermere Library, Ellerthwaite, Windermere, LA23 2AJ, UK - map.

Susan Stein will be a guest speaker at Holocaust Memorial Day commemoration.

2015 Jan 27 19:00 Jordans Quaker Meeting House, Welders Lane, Jordans, HP9 25N, UK - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion.

2015 Jan 28 19:00 University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion with Rowan Williams and Ed Kessler. Open to the public.

2015 Jan 29 10:00 Friends' School - Saffron Walden, Mount Pleasant Road, Saffron Walden, Essex, CB11 3EB, UK - map.

Full day residency at Saffron Walden Friends School with performances of Etty and class visits.

2015 Feb 04 19:00 Aberystwyth University, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, SY23 3FL, UK - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion.

2015 Mar 08 03:00 PM Mercy High School San Francisco, 3250 19th Avenue, San Francisco, CA, US - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion. Part of residency at Mercy High School. Open to the public.

2015 May 10 11:00AM Medford Leas, One Medford Leas Way, Medford, NJ, US - map.

Performance of Etty followed by post-performance discussion. Performance is open to the public.

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Etty

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