Re: [Cz-L] Poems of Selma Meerbaum-Eisinger -- translations

From: <>
Date: Sat, 01 Mar 2008 14:28:49 -0500

Your memory is good, Bruce. Quoted below is my late mother, Pearl Spiegel
Fichman, writing about that performance in Furth, Germany. It is clipped f=
a University of Cincinnati website:

Postscript March 2005:
Selma oder Die Reise um den Tisch.
Eine szenische Recherche mit Musik
In the year 2000, to my great surprise I received a call from Fürth,
Germany, with news of an intriguing project. The
caller explained that his wife, an
actress, had read the poetry of Selma Meerbaum-a small volume of her writi=
published in Germany.
The actress, Jutta Czurda, and a group of friends-a composer, a writer, an=
his actress wife-decided to create a play about Selma and put some of her
poems to music. However, they knew very little about her, other than that =
had died of typhoid fever in Ukraine in December 1941. Mr. Minasian, the
husband of the actress, decided to turn to the
Internet for information. As soon as
he entered Selma's name, there appeared the chapter from my memoirs, Before
Memories Fade. He found my address and telephone number and the connection =
Mr. Minasian informed me of the group's plan and asked whether I would
cooperate in the creation of the play. I
enthusiastically agreed. I wanted Selma
to be famous, if only posthumously. For a year we spoke almost every week,
about the town, the community, the war, Selma's love for Leiser (my husband=
cousin). I answered their questions, in German, and some of my statements w=
incorporated into the play.
In March of 2001, I was told that the premiere would take place on April 2=
in the Stadttheater Fürth, Studio auf dem Theater. The theater invited m=
husband and me to attend the premiere, all expenses paid! We were of cours=
moved and were excited to have the opportunity to be there. We took along =
older grandson, Michael, who was seventeen at the
time. We arrived on April 19,
2001, and were met by Mr. Minasian at the railroad station in Nuremberg. W=
had talked for a year, for hours at a time, and now we met in person.
On the morning of the day before the premiere we were received at the
theater. There was a crowd: actors, musicians,
the press, radio and TV reporters.
That was the only time in my life that I was interviewed in German.
Fortunately it worked out well. On the following
day, the day of the premiere (which
was only open to invited guests and the press), a long article, with
photographs, appeared in the Fürth newspaper. It
was a wonderful performance, on an
open stage with musicians all around and the
composer at the piano. The writer's
wife, Katharina Teuffert, played Selma.
The play was performed often in Fürth, then at a film festival in Munich=
and in 2002 in Zurich. And then in Czernowitz. On the anniversary of the w=
premiere the cast traveled to Selma's hometown, where it was put on in a
theater very similar to the one in Fürth. As
Jutta Czurda reported in a letter to
me, both performances were almost sold out and the audiences were very
enthusiastic: "Almost 1,000 people saw Selma .
. . After the play we all signed
countless programs and answered questions. And so for us, you, too, return=
symbolically to Czernowitz with your voice, and built a direct bridge to S=
for the audience." She is right. Although German is not spoken in Czernowi=
today, Selma and I came home somehow.

In a message dated 3/1/2008 8:44:14 A.M. Eastern Standard Time, writes:
Eytan, Irene, Helene,

Wasn't there also a play produced in Germany several years ago based
on Selma's poetry? I think your Eytan's mother, Pearl, helped
provide background to the producers and then was invited to the
play's opening performance in Germany. Or is my memory off on this

Best always,
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Received on 2008-03-01 19:28:49

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