My Name Is Asher Lev Tickets
My Name is Asher Lev is an inspiring and thought provoking short play revolving around life of a boy who struggles between tradition and art. The play is adapted from best-selling novel by American author and Rabbi Chaim Potok with the same title. It is a persuasive story of a boy who steps against the desires of his family and follows his passion. Set in post-war Brooklyn, the story highlights how the boy matures as both an artist and a Jew and focuses on the lifelong tension between art and religion.
Asher is a Hasidic young Jew who has a natural gift of artistic abilities but his family and society fails to recognize and appreciate his talent. But, rather than submitting to his family’s wills and choosing the path everyone wants him to, he chooses to fulfill his dreams.
From the very beginning, we see an intense passion in Asher’s character. He has ideas in his head and he must put them down. He does not care if his images are controversial, they are true to him. He puts all his emotions and energy into his work. But his father Aryeh considers art unrelated to religious expressions. Aryeh is a serious man who works for a religious leader of his community and frequently speaks for him. He travels a lot preaching religious teachings and is naturally incapable of understanding Asher’s artistic skills. Asher narrates his story from beginning when he was a young child of six years. Even at that age, his father Aryeh thinks he is wasting time and he should be reading torah rather than playing with crayons. Things get worse, when Asher draws paintings he sees at a museum and his father is so depressed by his painting of naked woman that he cannot even look at his son anymore. His mother tries to understand him and his talent though. Knowing that her husband does not approve of his son’s talent, she is suffering from inside unable to decide whom to take side with. On this conflict between father and son, she is heartbroken and torn apart.
There are only a few characters and a small stage in the play but these characters are so deep and full of emotions that the play remains interesting and captivating throughout. Each actor handles it perfectly and the energy never wavers from the stage keeping audience spell bound throughout the entire play.
Asher does not let his passion go away and dreams go waste. Despite the disapproval from his father, he continues to perform art and eventually appears to be a formidable artist and even his father is proud of him now. But the time comes when he paints his masterpiece using the symbolism of crucifixions to depict his mother’s sufferings and offends his parents and community so much that he is asked to leave. Asher leaves because he does not want to hurt the people he loves the most.
My name is Asher Lev is a beautiful play that explores conflicting traditions ingeniously. The story is a perfect mix of art, religion and family. It is subtle and angry, full of overwhelming moments of joy as well as heartbreaking moments of pain. It is an intelligent and provocative production that deserves to be seen. So get your My name is Asher Lev tickets and enjoy the fascinating play that will urge you to think deeply.
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