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A Musical Tribute to Composer Charles Strouse

Spring Season 2005

"Having seen Ms. Pechstein's remarkable performance... we are proud and honored to have been part of such a moving and artistically superb enterprise. This production... is not only musically affecting and provocative. It also sheds a new light on the Diary..."
Bernhard von der Planitz, Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany, New York City

"Pechstein masterfully conveyed Anne's transformation from wide-eyed, ecstatic birthday girl to... somber young woman... Her portrayal of Frank was deeply affecting, revealing an understanding of Frank both as a young woman and as an extraordinary symbol... Anne Frank felt much shorter than its hour length, swiftly taking the audience through twenty-one scenes and nearly as many emotions."
Alicia Zuckerman, Opera News Online

"[B]y the time the hour had passed in which one brilliant young soprano with rare acting ability had dazzled the audience with a knockout performance, we came to realize that Anne Frank fit the demands of the mono opera almost perfectly... Mr. Frid's 21 scenes are right out of the diary and the words that he selected for the stage lift the subject far above the standard fare...The dialogue among the ensemble players seems ideally intimate, in fact, exactly right... Encompass's Director and founder, Nancy Rhodes, once again led a production into a rarified atmosphere of excellence."
Barry Cohen, New Music Connoisseur

"Frid uses the monologue form with great skill to extend those portraits both verbally and musically... [Frid] has taken a book with which we are almost too familiar and reimagined it in an unlikely way, with results that restore much of the power of the original work."
George Robinson, The Jewish Week

The Diary of Anne Frank
Anne Frank Button BarPhotographsLibrettoCrewCast


Charles Townsend Wittreich Jr. (set designer) has designed On the Verge, Icons and Outcasts and When I Was a Girl I Used to Scream and Shout, directed by Patricia Miskoff at the John Montgomery Theatre, and Bloody Poetry, directed by Chris Hayes at CSC. He has assisted Broadway designers John Ezell, Eldon Elder, Loren Sherman, Bob Crowley, John Arnone, David Gallo and Heidi Ettinger. Regional credits include Guys and Dolls, directed by Stephen Terrell at the Texas Shakespeare Festival and Wonderland and The Forest at the New Jersey Shakespeare Festival. Mr. Wittreich received his MFA from the University of Kansas City and is the College Director of Theatres at SCCC.

Izzy Einsidler (Lighting Designer) returns to the production of The Diary of Anne Frank and is proud to be working with Nancy Rhodes again. Most recent credits include: An Ordinary Miracle, and The Lynching of Leo Frank (Ensemble Studio Theatre/Medicine Show) This is How it Began (Woodstock Theatre Company, inaugural season), The Subject Was Roses, and Sus (Jean Cocteau Repertory), and Diary of a Madman (Rand Theater, UMASS at Amherst). Regional and International credits include: Sweeney Todd (Stagedoor), Orpheus, and The Playboy of the Western World (Mountview, UK), Lebenspielle (London Fringe, UK) and various work with the Royal National Theatre and The Reduced Shakespeare Company in London. Mr. Einsidler’s work can also be seen this spring at Jean Cocteau Repertory in their production of The Marriage of Figaro.

Sarah Lewis (Stage Manager) is currently completing her B.A. in Music at the Aaron Copland School of Music (CUNY). Although primarily a singer/ songwriter and classical guitarist, she frequently finds herself working in theatre in one capacity or another. Most recently she worked with the Roundabout Theatre Company in Special Promotions, and in May 2001 assisted in the New York premiere of The Diary of Anne Frank. She is making her debut as stage manager with this production.

Marianne Powell-Parker (Hair and Makeup) has designed costumes for numerous productions for Encompass New Opera Theatre including Venus in Africa, Phaedra, Miss Havisham’s Wedding Night, Ocean Dream and I Will Wait. A Fulbright scholar, she has worked with the Barter Theatre, the Goodman Theatre, River Arts Repertory and Bristol Repertory Theatre.

Matthew Cade (Gestapo) received his degree in theatre from Hunter College in 1999. Some New York theatre credits have been Brighton Beach Memoirs at the Greenwich Street Theatre, Anthony and Cleopatra at the Jan Hus Playhouse, and The Amphibian Song at the Abington theatre. Recently he had a principle role in a pilot which was a spin-off of the 1993 movie "A Bronx Tale." He thanks his family and Cindy for their support.

Ben Patch (Gestapo) is appearing in his third production since moving to New York eight months ago. Ben would like to thank Encompass New Opera Theatre for this wonderful opportunity.

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