I Never Saw Another Butterfly, a story of survival and courage set against the brutality of a concentration camp will be brought to life by the Hopkinton Middle School Drama Club this weekend.
The play, directed by drama coach Hallyann Gifford, is about the true experiences of Raja Englanderova, a Terezin survivor. Despite their suffering, the children in the concentration camp thrived under the guidance of teachers who encouraged them to paint, write and perform. Their work was uncovered after the camp's liberation.
“I Never Saw Another Butterfly is a powerful and moving experience, not only for the performers, but for the audience," Gifford said. "We have a tremendously talented cast of young people who are bringing the story to life."
Gifford added that original poetry and art by the students would be featured in the show, the program and the lobby.
The play, written by Celeste Raspanti, will be performed at the Hopkinton Middle School Auditorium at 7 p.m. on Dec. 6 and 7.
Tickets are $10 for students and seniors, and $12 for adults, with a $2 discount for every donation to the Project Just Because’s Keep a Family Warm/ New Toy-Book Holiday Program. Tickets may be purchased at the door, or at the HMS Box Office, near the school’s main office, the week before the show.
Leads in the show include: Ana Amaral as the elder Raja Englanderova; Kaila Goldstein as young Raja; Lucy Medeiros as the teacher, Irena Synkova; AJ Waltzman as Raja's love interest, Honza Kosek; Galen Graham as Raja's father; Breena Winshman as her mother; Max Siegfried as her brother, Pavel; Julia Underdah as her Aunt Vera; Sarah Moschini as Pavel's fiancé, Irca; Matthew Dempsey as the Rabbi; Emma Bograd as Erika Schlager, Raja's neighbor; and Brianna Maloney as Renka, Irena's teaching assistant.
The children of Terezin are played by Matthew Fliegauf, Brittany Forsmo, Ian Holmes, Grayson Spitzer, Dan Potapov, Sam McAuliffe, Aine Ford, Helen Aghababian, Caitlyn O'Connor, Zach Ritterbusch, Miranda Baumann, Amanda Hasbrouck, Sarah Gallagher, Sammy Robert, Grace Schacterle, Olivia Ozmun, Cameron Connolly, Lauren Tompkins, Jasmine Moussad, and many more.
Shandana Mufti can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.