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Sunday, April 10, 2016

Acclaimed Holocaust-Denial Satire Comes to Jersey City



Searching for Self Among Holocaust Deniers: JCTC Presents Controversial Comedy This Weekend.

Jersey City Theater Center (JCTC) continues Identity this Friday and Saturday with the Hudson County premier a controversial Off-Broadway comedy about a man’s search for his Jewish identity among the most unlikeliest cohort: Holocaust Deniers!

“Hoaxocaust!, written and performed by Barry Levey with the generous assistance of the Institute for Political and International Studies, Tehran,” (yes, that’s the entire title!) – is a one-man show combining monologue, multimedia and biting satire by Barry Levey, one of the rising new voices in American Theater.

Hoaxocaust will be making its Hudson County debut as part of the Identity series – which was funded in part by a grant from the Hudson County Department of Cultural Affairs – on April 15 & 16 at Merseles Studios, 339 Newark Avenue, Jersey City, NJ 07302.

Hoaxocaust! won the Fringe Festival's 2014 Overall Excellence award, and returned for the FringeNYC Encore Series: Solo in the City for four additional performances at the Baruch Performing Arts Center. Since then, Levey has performed Hoaxocaust!, at a variety of venues, including Temple Beth Ahm Yisrael in Springfield, N.J. last year, to what he described was a “tremendous response.” Levey added, “we are thrilled to bring our show now to Jersey City.

New Jersey audiences are really adventurous – which helps for a comedy about Holocaust denial.”

In its 2014 review of Hoaxocaust!, Theatermania said: “with the latest war in Gaza and rising anti-Semitism in Europe, the themes are more relevant than ever… It really does feel like you're having a conversation with a particularly informed friend about something you read in the newspaper: Levey barrages the audience with facts, figures, and statistics. He tempers this heavy academic talk of genocide with his own affable brand of humor.”

The Jewish Standard proclaimed the play: "a sharp satire... There are more controversial and provocative ideas crammed into the 70-minute Hoaxacaust! than in most plays on or off-Broadway... Mr. Levey takes the audience down a variety of twisted paths as he explores the netherworld of Holocaust denial, finding laughs in a lot of strange places. The questions he asksare serious, however. The Holocaust is the burden that the Jews cannot put down, but we have to
find a way to prevent it from crushing us.”

Hoaxocaust!, directed by Jeremy Gold Kronenberg, tells the story of Barry, a self-described ‘gay man and secular Jew,’ who while trying to work things out with his boyfriend, travels the globe, tracking down deniers of Nazi genocide from Illinois to Iran, meeting engineers and ex-presidents and dodging a disapproving brother in Hungary. Dr. Ruth Westheimer, after seeing Hoaxocaust!, during its initial 2014 run, declared: "Does Barry get back together with his
boyfriend at the end? If not, they should come see me."

Barry Levey’s other productions include Maimed (with Jackie Hoffman, Project Y Theater); Critical Darling (The New Group); All the Way From China (Mad Dog at the Gene Frankel); and two short plays for Ars Nova: Downeaster Alexa and Yale Law School, the latter of which was a finalist for the Actors Theatre of Louisville's Heideman Prize. Levey is a two-time O’Neill finalist and his work has been developed at the Lark, Arena Stage, Rattlestick, Williamstown, Resonance Ensemble, New Jersey Playwrights Theatre and others. He holds a BA from Yale and an MFA from UC San Diego. (visit: hoaxocaust.com).

Hoaxocaust! April 15/April 16  8 PM – 10:30 PM
($18 online/$20 at door)...For more information or to purchase tickets visit: jctcenter.org


Jersey City Theater Center, Merseles Studios, 

339 Newark Avenue, Jersey City, NJ 07302 
(201) 795-5386

Funding for Identity was made possible by generous support from the Hudson County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs/Tourism Development, Thomas A. DeGise, Hudson County Executive and the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.

Identity was also made possible through the generosity of Ben LoPiccolo Development Group, JCTC’s Board of Directors, private donors and local Jersey City businesses.


Jersey City Theater Center, Inc. (JCTC) manages programming at Merseles Studios and the adjacent White Eagle Hall (photo), currently under construction. JCTC is a nonprofit, 501c3 arts organization committed to presenting innovative and progressive performing & visual arts as well as educational arts programs that embrace the multicultural identity and preserve the rich history of Jersey City, bringing its community closer together and enhancing its quality of life. 


 (Barry Levey photograph by Dixie Sheridan)

Jersey City Theater Center Inc. ・ 335-337 Newark Avenue ・ Jersey City NJ 07302


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