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Lisa Peschel, "Laughter in the Dark: Newly Discovered Songs and Sketches from the Terezín/Theresienstadt Ghetto, 1942-44"

Date: 04/03/2014

Time: 7:30 PM - 8:15 PM

Location: Ultan Recital Hall Ferguson Hall

Cost: Free


On April 3, 2014, the Center for Austrian Studies and the European Studies Consortium at the University of Minnesota will present “Laughter in the Dark: Newly Discovered Songs and Sketches from the Terezîn/Theresienstadt Ghetto, 1941-44.”

The lecture and performance will take place at 7:30 in the Lloyd Ultan Hall on the University of Minnesota West Bank Campus. Admission is free and the event is open to the public.

Jewish prisoners at the Terezín concentration camp and ghetto performed cabaret and comedy sketches for their fellow prisoners. The scripts were then lost for over 60 years before Lisa Peschel, a graduate of the University of Minnesota who is now a lecturer in the University of York’s Department of Theatre, Film and Television, discovered them during interviews with some of the camp survivors. Peschel gathered twelve theatrical texts and translated them into English for her book "Performing Captivity, Performing Escape: Cabarets and Plays from the Terezín /Theresienstadt Ghetto." Two outstanding Twin Cities performers, Ryan Lindberg and Emily Zimmer, will perform a selection of songs and sketches from the book. Peter Vitale, composer and music director for 10,000 Things Theatre, will direct the music and accompany them. Hayley Finn will direct. Most of this material has not been performed since it was written and performed by Czech and Austrian Jews imprisoned at Terezín, also known as Theresienstadt, in the Czech Republic.

In her lecture, Peschel will outline how the plays came to light, and their role in helping the prisoners deal with life in the ghetto, and the performances will be interwoven with the talk.


  • Name: The Center for Austrian Studies
  • E-mail: casahy@umn.edu
  • Sponsored by: Austrian Studies, Global Studies, European Studies Consortium, Holocaust & Genocide Studies, Jewish Studies

Disability Options:

To request disability accommodations, please contact the Center for Austrian Studies at 612-624-9007.

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