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Author(s): Yifat Zandani-Tsafrir & Shlomit Arnon
A play about the life of Haviva Reick, one of the 30 or so parachutists sent on military missions in Nazi-occupied Europe by the Jewish Agency Defense Department and Great Britain’s Special Operations Executive. In 1939, Reick immigrated from a small Slovakian village to Palestine, where she joined a kibbutz and later enlisted in an elite Jewish underground military organization. She returned to Slovakia in the fall of 1944 to assist with the resistance movement there. In the play, Haviva Reick’s story is presented in the form of a memory recounted by her former lover, now an old man living in a retirement home. A young student, Yael, is assigned to keep the old man company. The girl triggers the old man’s memory of Reick when she tells him she lives on Haviva Reick Street. He remembers Reick’s determination to assist with the war effort despite the advice she was given not to leave. The story of Reick’s courage and spirit serves as inspiration to the young girl to deal with her own troubles.
Format: Play for young audiences.
Original or Prominent Production: Performed by the National Youth Theatre in Israel, directed by the playwrights in collaboration with the Orto-Da Theatre, for audiences of 11-year-old to 17-year-old students and educational teams.Original Source Material: Inspired by the book Haviva by Tehila Ofer and Zeev Ofer (2004), which is available in English, Haviva Reick: A Kibbutz Pioneer’s Mission and Fall behind Nazi Lines (Fawns, 2014, and available as an e-book).
Nationality of Author: Israeli
English Language Translator: Miriam Talisman
The English version of the book, Haviva Reick: A Kibbutz Pioneer’s Mission and Fall behind Nazi Lines, is published by Fawns (2014).