AN AMERICAN PLAYWRIGHT : ROBERT KRAKOW TWO ORIGINAL PLAYS, TWO REMARKABLE TRIALSTHE FALSE WITNESS AND THE TRIAL OF FRANKLIN D. ROOSVELT
With Actor RichardKind and DirectorArthur Hiller(Love story) ROBERT KRAKOW
On December 1, 1989, while taking a walk, I was struck with the idea that I would write, in play form, the trial of Adolf. This decisive moment represented the release of a creative process that had been welling up during a long period of reflection and research. At that time, Krakow did not imagine that his original version of The False Witness would be published in 1992, and he would continue to work on his artistic project for 20 years.
WITH FREDERICK DOUGLASS LEADER OF THE ABOLITIONIST MOVEMENT, AS THE VOICE OF CONSCIOUSNESS … Historical figures Actors
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT CLICK ENTER FOR NEXT PAGE PRESENTATION A graduate of Georgetown University Law School, Washington DC, RobertKrakow became a faculty member at the American University, GeorgeMason University and Catholic University Graduate School. He began hislegal career as a trial lawyer. Having a strong background in criminal lawstudies, he soon developed an intense interest in the procedures andpolemics used to influence juries. He developed database managementsoftware and served as a software administrator for multi-user systemsutilized by law firms. Krakow’s background influenced his creative choicesin writing The False Witness. He relied on his computer skills to manageand analyze voluminous quantities of historical data and on his legalexperience to design the courtroom setting for the stage. Driven to understand the conflict between Jewish identity and theideological forces, both historical and contemporary, Krakow began to studythe Holocaust. He was motivated to discover the roots of Hitler’s anti-Semitism.Krakow began to question the modern perception of the causes of theHolocaust by researching for deeper reasons that could explain thisunprecedented historical phenomenon
THE FALSE WITNESS CLICK ENTER FOR NEXT PAGE PRESENTATIONThe False Witness is a morality play which questions our right to assign theblame for the holocaust only to Hitler and his third Reich. The play challengesthe conventional wisdom and seeks to lift the curtain on the subject of who isreally to blame. As Adolf Hitler is being summoned before the Criminal Courtof the High Tribunal, this work proposes to put religion and mankind on trialfor the tragedy known to history as the Holocaust. As the Defense counsel forAdolf Hitler summons his witnesses before the Tribunal, it becomes clear thatHitlers claim of being an instrument for the real wishes of mankind rings alltrue. The testimony of Martin Luther, William Shakespeare, Richard Wagner,Henry Ford, Franklin Roosevelt and Pope Pius XII are submitted to the jury,the public itself, another element of the originality of the play.The False Witness is a statement about historical complicity and looks backinto time in search of the origins of mankinds darkest era.
THE INSPIRATION FOR THE PLAY « THE TRIAL OF FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT » CLICK ENTER FOR NEXT PAGEThe Trial Of Franklin D. Roosevelt was inspired by the saga of the voyage of theSt. Louis.The SS St Louis, a German Transatlantic carrying over 900 Jewish refugees, leftHamburg on May 13, 1939 in a desperate attempt to flee Nazi Germany. Althoughthe passengers had landing certificates granted by the Cuban immigrationauthorities, the Cuban government denied entry to the refugees. The captainheaded north to Florida. Upon reaching the shores of Miami Beach on June 5,1939, the St Louis passengers made their desperate plea for safe haven to theUnited States Government, sending telegrams directly to President and Mrs.Roosevelt pleading for political asylum. President Roosevelt and Secretary ofState Cordell Hull denied their request. The ship was ordered to return toGermany. France, Britain, the Netherlands and Belgium welcomed thepassengers on their return to Europe.A quarter of the refugees perished in the camps when the war broke three monthslater.
DESCRIPTION OF THE PLAYTHE TRIAL OF FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT explores the politicalmotivations of the President and his intimate deputies behind thehandling of the crisis of Jewish refugees before and during the war.The play is also presented as a trial with a judgment and an interactionwith the public. After the performance, the survivors come to talk aboutthis part of history with the public.R. Krakow’s plays have been performed throughout the United Statesover the past 15 years.He is the founder of the legacy of the SS St. Louis. The Foundationsmission is to provide education through drama to students worldwide.A documentary film, "Passengers J", includes the Trial of Franklin D.Roosevelt, as well as interviews with 6 surviving St. Louis passengers.
CORDELL HULL TIME magazine A man who perhaps embodies the word controversial, Cordell Hullreceived the Nobel Peace Prize in 1945 for his prominent role inestablishing the U.N. While his efforts to start the U.N. wereadmirable, his actions six years earlier caused widespreadconfusion. Hull was President Franklin D. Roosevelts Secretary ofState during the S.S. St. Louis crisis when 950 Jewish refugees,seeking asylum from Nazi persecution, set sail for the U.S. fromHamburg. Despite FDR showing willingness to help, Hull, togetherwith Southern Democrats, voiced strong opposition and threatenedto withdraw support for FDR in the forthcoming election if he didntfollow suit. On June 4, 1939, the President denied the ship entry,forcing it to return to Europe, where many of its passengerssubsequently died in the Holocaust.
State Secretary Hillary ClintonHILLARY RODHAM CLINTON Will open the ceremony
PROGRAM CLICK ENTER FOR NEXT PAGE PRESENTATIONState Secretary Hillary Clinton will open the ceremony.The SS St Louis Passengers are coming as International Ambassadors ofGoodwill and will participate in a special event which will include:•The welcoming ceremony led by Special Envoy Hannah Rosenthal,Special Envoy Douglas Davidson and Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat whichacknowledges the courage and patriotism of the Passengers as well astheir exceptional contributions to American society•The presentation of Passengers’ Proclamation to the representatives ofFrance, England, Belgium and Holland; the signed Proclamation willexpress their appreciation for being granted safe haven in June, 1939 andalso honor the memories of these nation’s brave citizens who risked theirlives to shelter and protect Jews during the wartime period•The presentation of Senate Resolution 111 carrying the signatures of thirtyfour SS St Louis passengers to the US Department of State to be held inits permanent archives•The theatrical presentation of The Trial of Franklin D Roosevelt bydirector E. Holdridge•A panel discussion chaired by Ambassador Stuart Eizenstat
DIRECTOR FOR THE PLAY: Eleanor Holdridge B.A., Sarah Lawrence College; M.F.A, Yale School of Drama Assistant Professor, Head of the M.F.A Directing program of Catholic University Off-Broadway productions include Steve & Idi by David Grimm at the Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre, Cycling Past The Matterhorn at the Clurman Theatre, The Imaginary Invalid, and Mary Stuart at the Pearl Theatre Company. Among her regional productions are Gee’s Bend (the Arden Theatre), The Crucible and Much Ado About Nothing (Perseverance Theatre); Noises Off and Art (Triad Stage); Julius Caesar and Macbeth (Milwaukee Shakespeare); The Two Gentlemen of Verona (Alabama Shakespeare Festival); Hamlet (premiere, national tour and remount), As You Like It, Lettice And Lovage, The Tempest, Twelfth Night (Shakespeare & Company). A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Shakespeare Festival of St. Louis); Henry V (Shakespeare On The Sound); The Taming Of The Shrew and The Tempest (Philadelphia Shakespeare Festival); Betrayal (Portland Stage Company); The Lion In Winter (Northern Stage); and The Cenci, The Two Noble Kinsmen, (Red Heel Theatre Company). In the past she has held positions as Artistic Director for the Red Heel Theatre Company, Resident Assistant Director at the Shakespeare Theatre and Resident Director at New Dramatists. She has directed and taught students at the Yale School of Drama, NYU’s graduate program and the Juilliard School, among others.
AMBASSADOR EIZENSTAT WILL CHAIR A PANEL CONSISTING OF LEADINGSCHOLARS TO DISCUSS THE ISSUES RAISED BY THE SAGA OF THE SS STLOUIS INCLUDING HUMAN RIGHTS, IMMIGRATION, REFUGEE POLICY, ANTI-SEMITISM AND DIPLOMACY AND POLITICS.
DONATION OF SENATE RESOLUTION 111 TO THE STATE DEPARTMENT ARCHIVES IN MEMORY OF RICHARD HOLBROOKE
US CONGRESSMAN RON KLEINDOUBLE CLICK ENTER FOR NEXT PAGE
THE FONDATIONThe mission of the SS St. Louis legacy project is topromote a deeper awareness of the issues of Human Rights Refugee policy Immigration Racism.Through its proprietary education through dramaprogram the Foundation produces events, educationalpresentations, and curricula that serve a worldwidestudent body as well as institutional and communalaudiences.