Thursday, March 5, 2015

The Pianist of Willesden Lane @ Cleveland Play House

Through March 22, 2015
Allen Theatre, PlayhouseSquare, 216-241-6000

Bob Abelman

All of us readers of the Cleveland Jewish News have a personal story to share about Kristellnacht and its life-altering impact on our families. But none of us, save for Mona Golabek, have the remarkable skill and unique opportunity to set those stories to classical music and share them on stage.   

To see a full review of this show, read Bob Abelman's CJN article here:

Roy Berko

THE PIANIST OF WILLESDEN LANE is a special theatrical and musical event.  An absolute “must see,” the script and the production educate, entertain and enrapture!  Kudos to  Mona Golabek and Hershey Felder for creating an experience that viewers will long remember.

To see a full review of this show, read Roy Berko's blog here.

Kerry Clawson

Mona Golabek offered a soulful performance of her one-woman show "The Pianist of Willesden Lane," a gripping, 90-minute piece with no intermission at Cleveland Play House’s Allen Theatre. The Grammy-nominated classical concert pianist told from the piano the story of her mother’s Kindertransport flight from Vienna to London just before World War II broke out. Golabek expertly interspersed the music of Chopin, Beethoven, Debussy and Grieg with the dramatic true story of her mother, Lisa Jura.  This inspiring show about the life-affirming power of music for one girl through the dark history of the Holocaust is a must-see for audiences of all ages.

 To see a full review of this show, read Kerry Clawson's review here.

Mark Horning

This is theater of such magnitude that it is no surprise that tickets for the sold out performances are becoming dear.  Mona Golabek gives what can only be described as a once in a lifetime theater experience that will evoke sincere changes in the way you look at performances from now on.  It is a story of love, hope, talent, luck, perseverance and sacrifice.  It is the ultimate theatrical experience.   

To see a full review of this show, read Mark Horning's blog.

Christine Howey

This show, which is touring many cities, is a tight and captivating package highlighted by Golabek’s entrancing talents at the keyboard of her Steinway grand piano. The piano is not only the key set piece on the mostly black stage, it is absolutely central to Golabek’s life.

To see a full review of this show, read Christine Howey's blog Rave and Pan

Andrea Simakis

Though the details of her life fascinate, Lisa Jura's story stands in for the more than 10,000 children spared from the gas chambers by a seat on the Kindertransport.

As their numbers dwindle with each passing year, so do their stories of survival. This is something Golabek knows. Her every stroke of the gleaming keys echoes the words that swirled up from the ashes of a war torn world: "Never forget."

To see a full review of this show, read Andrea Simakis' blog or visit here.

Art Thomas

This show is storytelling at its finest, with a performer who is first of all a top notch concert pianist. There are moments of powerful sadness, but the overarching element is hope for the future. 

Click here to read the complete review at WestLife