Monday, November 13, 2017

"Playback" Celebrating 40 Years in Shiloh

This past Motzei Shabbat, Saturday night, we, the renew-returned Jewish community in Shiloh had another forty years celebration.

I miss the early days when all of our parties, events were totally homemade, and not just the food. If I'm not mistaken, there wasn't even a "sound-system." There would be a turnout of 90+%, and the patrolling security guards, neighbors taking turns, would also be listening for crying babies. Everything was arranged and performed by volunteers.

The artist and art teacher, Gretta, telling
her story to the newcomers.
Today is a different world. Not only are the guards and coordinators salaried, but professional entertainers are brought in. One popular performance medium is what's called "playback." It's a form of improvisation based on the reminiscences/stories told by others. The actors then "perform" it with a bit of exaggerations and their own interpretations.

At events, such as the one we had on Saturday night, the actors look for what they see as the humor in these stories. Sometimes when the narrative isn't clear to them, they'll ask the storyteller a few questions. What interested me was the reactions of the actors, who are a generation younger than those who established yishuvim, communities like Shiloh. They just couldn't get into the skin/mind of the first story told, which was by someone who was an active participant in that pioneering time. And the storyteller, who so embodies those early days, didn't really understand what they were asking.

The actors did a better job with some of the other stories, but I ended up leaving the event rather depressed. It's so clear that fifty years after the 1967 Six Days War, the profound significance of our miraculous victory is still lost on most Jews, including those living in the State of Israel.


Anonymous said...

We have successfully used coconut CREAM (not oil) that comes in a can,in place of margarine.

Batya Medad said...

You've commented to the wrong post.