Saturday, July 26, 2014

'The Pianist Of Willesden Lane' in Perfect Harmony With Its Dramatic Roots

Mona Golabek in the one-woman show, "The Pianist Of Willesden Lane." Photos by Carol Rosegg.


often finds us in the darkest times.

"The Pianist Of Willesden Lane" tells the heartfelt story of Lisa Jura, who at 14, was sent from her home in Vienna to live and work in England.

Mona Golabek is the star and co-creator, with Lee Cohen, of the book. Hershey Felder adapted it for the stage and directs. It is based on the experiences of MG's mother's during WWII, recounted in “The Children of Willesden Lane - Beyond the Kindertransport: A Memoir Of Music, Love, and Survival.”

"The Pianist Of Willesden Lane," the inaugural production at 59E59 Theaters' new Series 5A through 24 Aug., is beautifully told in words and piano accompaniment.

MG is a charming narrator, channeling mostly her mother's voice and performances at the Steinway, but enacting other characters in this solo presentation.

Like LJ, MG is a well-known pianist who has performed at the Kennedy Center and the Hollywood Bowl, among other venues.

Mona recalls various characters in "The Pianist Of Willesden Lane."

The staging of "The Pianist Of Willesden Lane," with sets by Trevor Hay and HF, is very effective and affecting.

Originated at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles, "The Pianist Of Willesden Lane" is a memory play and a tribute that maintains its dramatic integrity. It will move you.

Visit to learn more about "The Pianist Of Willesden Lane."

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