#SoCS July 9/16 – Concentration

Thank you Linda for your Stream of Concentration prompt.

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Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “concentration.” Use it any way you see fit. Have fun!

When I read the prompt, the first thing that came to mind was concentration camps.

As a university student, one of my degree subjects, alongside English, was Drama, and we had several performances that we acted in throughout the 4 years of our degree.

One which was the most poignant, and heart wrenching was a performance of Ghetto by Joshua Sobol. This was a play about a theatre group in  the Vilna Ghetto, and the play included important figures from WW2, such as Jacob Gens, who was head of the Jewish police, and later head of the Ghetto.

I played one of the actors, and my most memorable scene was when we were forced to perform Swanee, by the Nazis, and as we sang, they slapped black paint across our faces.It made me feel humiliated, even though it was not real. What those people went through…

At our last performance, we had a special guest come to watch. He was an elderly Jewish gentleman. Someone who had lived in the ghettos and in a concentration camp, and lived to tell the tale. As he watched, he cried. Our performance had moved him to tears, awakening awful memories, and feelings within him. He was not upset at us for inviting him to the show, but touched that we felt it important to perform a play with such a tough subject.

The whole experience, the character building information gathering, the actual becoming the character I was, touched me. I thank God that I was not one to have lived in that time, to be subjected to the cruelties and racism that the Jewish community had to suffer.

The atrocities of the time are well documented, and we can all read about them, but to actually put yourself in their shoes, even for a performance… harrowing…


20 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. herheadache
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 21:50:31

    Wow. I read a lot about that period in history. That is the first thing that came to my mind too when I read this week’s prompt. I wished it hadn’t. I can’t let myself get too involved in hearing about that time, but yet I am drawn to it because of all I believe we can and should learn from it.
    It must have been hard to do that particular play. I would have a hard time putting myself in that place, I know it.
    Good for you for taking that on. Important we never forget.

    Liked by 1 person


  2. eloquentparadise
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 18:01:37

    It is so harsh and cruel to subject people of a certain race to such humiliation and disgust. Hitler was a cruel man and karma got to him.

    Liked by 1 person


  3. freyathewriter
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 15:32:57

    Very moving writing, Ritu. I know people who escaped the Shoah as children, but lost members of their family who could not escape. For all I know (and my family tree history is very fractured and patchy for a number of reasons), ancestors of mine suffered in the same way. Thank you for writing this.

    Liked by 1 person


  4. Bun Karyudo
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 15:15:30

    It must have been very touching to have the elderly Jewish gentleman at your performance. Let’s hope those terrible experiences he and others like him suffered in the ghetto remain forever a thing of the past.

    Liked by 1 person


  5. Erika Kind
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 14:45:07

    And even though the feelings are already so painful it is only an idea we might get about what they went through. 22 years back I visited the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam. It was the first time when I was crying walking through a tourist attraction. I felt the fear screaming from the walls and I could hardly breathe because of the panic and desperation I felt in that house knowing the story behind and reading about that brave little girl.

    Liked by 1 person


  6. Judy Martin
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 07:38:02

    I cannot imagine how awful and terrifying it must have been for those poor people to have to go through.
    It sounded as though that play gave you all a much greater understanding of the atrocities. It is something that should never have happened again, but sadly it is still going on as you say.
    Great post Sis.

    Liked by 1 person


  7. syl65
    Jul 09, 2016 @ 01:56:54

    Very touching Sister.. Unimaginable

    Liked by 1 person


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