Cast members – L to R, Bob Heath, Kyle Fennie, Ian Agnew, Kirsten Quinn, Tyler Brennan, Eric Cover, Jay Romero
The world premiere of The Roses in June, a new play written by Timothy M. Kolman, will make its debut in Philadelphia on June 14, 2017 and run through July 1, 2017 at Plays & Players Theatre, 1714 Delancey Place, Philadelphia, PA. The play tackles two difficult subjects through the lives of The Rose Family fleeing Nazi Germany during the Holocaust and escaping to what they hoped would be a better life in London. There is the life-long fear associated with being a refugee and the anguish of bullying and anti-Semitism since their son Paul was a victim of this, even after moving to London. With striking resemblance to contemporary times, Kolman brings the audience face to face with the past, but in frightening reality with the present.
The Roses in June is inspired by playwright and British native Kolman’s firsthand knowledge of London’s Jewish community and his own family history. Set in swinging London on the eve of Israel’s 1967 Six-Day War, the play explores the overwhelming struggle of love, fear and forgiveness amidst the possibility of a second Holocaust and against the burdens of prejudice, traumatic memory and the complex attitude of the British towards the Jews.
A seven-member cast brings outstanding talent to the play. They are Kirsten Quinn in the role of Ingrid Rose, Ian Agnew who plays George Rose -Ingrid’s husband, Tyler Brennan in the role of the son, Paul Rose, Bob Heath as Nigel Taplow, headmaster of St. Crispin’s School, Jay Romero as Abdul Amin, the student. Eric Cover as Abdul’s father, Dr. Amin, and Kyle Fennie portraying Colin Davies, housemaster at St. Crispin’s. The consulting director is Allen Radway.
For Kolman, a Philadelphia-area resident, writing the play was very cathartic. He said, “The trauma of a refugee does not end when the refugee finds sanctuary. It simmers, barely below the surface. Trauma is an unforgotten memory and Jews have integrated trauma in to their very existence throughout time.”
Originally from London, England, Timothy Kolman, whose parents were German Jewish refugees, was educated at the prestigious public St Paul’s School. He says that The Roses in June is not autobiographical, but it does take elements from various parts of his life. A combat veteran of the IDF (Israeli Defense Forces), he lived in Israel for over three years, marrying in Jerusalem and coming to the United States in 1980. He received his first law degree from the University of Glasgow in Scotland with high honors and is a lifetime member of the Middle Temple Inns of Court in London. He then attended and received his second law degree from The University of Pennsylvania Law School where he was an Editor of the Law Review. Kolman is a member of the United States Supreme Court, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and the United States District Court for the Western District and the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
The Roses in June running June 14 through July 1 will run Tuesdays – Fridays at 8pm, Saturdays and Sundays at 2pm and 7pm. Press Opening will be Friday, June 16 at 7pm. Each performance will be followed by talk backs featuring the playwright, director and actors.
Tickets are on sale now and are $47 for orchestra seating and $35 for balcony seating. To purchase tickets, call 866-811-4111 or visit www.therosesinjune.com. For groups of 10 or more, call: 267 299 8822. Senior and Student rush tickets available at the door one hour before the show. Senior Orchestra $20 Balcony $15/Student Orchestra $15, Balcony $10. For information, call: 844 – 7ROSE67 (844-776-7367).
Photo Credit: Mark Garvin