Gretchen in Exile: A Collage of Displacement - A Work in Progress

nancy manocherian's the cell presents



Brown Paper Tickets Ticket Widget Loading...

Click Here to visit the Brown Paper Tickets event page.


“My aim, which I express quite candidly, is to win you—as far as that is needed—to the side of the republic; to the side of what is called democracy, and what I call humanity, because of a distaste I share with you for the meretricious overtones of the other word [war]. I would plead with you for it, in this sight of this man and poet here before me [Goethe], whose genuine popularity rests upon the loftiest of folk and human elements. For I could wish that the face of Germany, now so sadly drawn and distorted, might once more show lineaments like his, this poet’s face, which still displays so many traits of that high trustworthiness which we connect with the German name.”

--Thomas Mann, The German Republic, 1922

A musical collage on the experience of exile and the search for home that encompasses Weimar cabaret, German and French art song, and selections from Hanns Eisler’s Hollywood Songbook with songs by Alban Berg, Hanns Eisler, Friedrich Holländer, Darius Milhaud, Othmar Schoeck, Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann, Kirstin Vollness, and Kurt Weill. This is the first draft of a work to be staged in the fall of 2017.

Ted Altschuler, Director

Ted has directed more than 45 productions at New York City Opera, Rode Hoode (Amsterdam), Phoenix Repertory Theatre, Kaplan Penthouse, The Juilliard School, and others.  Operas include: La Calisto, Don Giovanni, Albert Herring, Cosi fan Tutte, Tell-tale Heart, Werther.  Plays include: Broken Journey, Hot Fudge, Icarus’ Mother, Play with Repeats, In the Belly of the Beast, Road to the Graveyard, On the Verge, and pieces inspired by artists Joseph Cornell, Georgia O’Keefe, and Virginia Woolf (the award-winning Chicago production of Virginia).  Film: Assistant Director A Trip to Bountiful. Ted has taught acting internationally at conservatories and young artist programs.  He served as Associate Director of Mint Theatre Company and now directs Baruch Performing Arts Center in New York.   

Jonathan Breit, Pianist

Jonathan Breit is an award-winning pianist and composer known for his witty sense of humor and daring blend of styles. As a pianist he has premiered pieces by Sting, pasek & paul, and Andrew Lippa, and has performed at 54 Below, (le) poisson rouge, and, most recently, the Aspen Music Festival, where he was a fellowship pianist for the prestigious Aspen Opera Center. As a composer, he is equally at home writing choral music, musical theater, and opera. His pieces have been performed around the world, including: The Rivals (Lively Productions, NY), Recette de Bouillabaisse (Vingt Lieux sur la Mer, Marseille), and The End of Men (Cantori New York, Dixon Place). His song cycle Overheard Conversations is currently being workshopped at the BMI Lehmann Engel Musical Theater Workshop (New York). His work has been featured in the NY Post, the NY Daily News, and numerous other publications. He holds a B.A. from Yale College and a master of music degree from Mannes College. 

 Jessica Goldring, Vocals

New York based vocalist, Jessica Goldring has performed with Ohio Light Opera, Kansas City Lyric Opera, The Caramoor Festival, The Festival d’Aix-en-Provence, The Franz Schubert Institut, Eugene Opera, The Liederkranz Opera Theater, Les Rencontres Musicales in Enghien, Belgium and The New York Repertory Theater.  Recent inroads into the world of contemporary music include performances of the Sprechstimme in Schönberg’s Pierrot Lunaire with the University of Missouri Chamber Orchestra, Jessie Keppie in Russell Currie’s opera Mackintosh with the New Opera Ensemble of Scotland, the premiere of Bret Wartchow’s chamber piece The Hidden World at the Oregon Composer’s Forum, her participation as a soloist in Quixotic Fusion and Elementa with the Kansas City Ballet, performances with the Hartford New Music Festival and her contributions as a vocalist and actress to The Dada Spill Project, performed in at the Widow Jane Mine in upstate NY. In 2011, She performed Mahler’s Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen with the Kansas City Civic Orchestra and in 2012 She curated and performed in Macklowe Gallery’s Paris Salon 1900, a concert celebrating the gallery’s groundbreaking exhibition of Art Nouveau sculpture. Recently, she curated and sang in De la lumière au chaosFrench Art Song from the City of Lights 1900-1939 with soprano, Heather Garder at Spectrum in NYC. In 2009, together with filmmaker Noe Kidder and actress Marianna Vogt, Jessica founded Exilkabarett, a company devoted to the art of cabaret and song. She has performed with this company at several NYC venues including Dixon Place, the Brecht Forum, The Tank, Millennium Film Workshop, Mono No Aware, The Drilling Company, The Anyway Café and Petite Versailles.

A portion of the night’s proceeds will support the Refugee Youth Summer Academy (now in its 11th year), a joint project of ASTEP (Artists Striving to End Poverty) and International Rescue Committee. For more information, please visit here.