In Theresienstadt, Evelina belonged to the children who loved to visit performances of the children opera Brundibár by Hans Krása and Adolf Hoffmeister.
Whenever it was possible for her, she was among the audience - till December 1943, when she was taken away from Theresienstadt to Auschwitz, where she lived till July 1944 in the Children's Block in the Family Camp Auschwitz-Birkenau.
In her autobiography "Lebenslauf auf einer Seite", Evelina Merová devotes a special chapter to Brundibár.
Evelinas portrays the story-line of the opera by mixing it with her thoughts and feelings during performances in Theresienstadt and with present reflections. Reading this chapter makes it palpable for the reader to understand why the opera became so important for her and for the children in Theresienstadt.
A very recommendable book for all interested in the opera Brundibár.
You can order the book via Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
One of the most unexpected events in 2016
On 27 January 2016, the international Holocaust Remembrance Day, the prestigeous Mikhailovsky Theatre in St. Petersburg, Russia presented Hans Krasa’s opera Brundibár. It was brought to stage by the young and renowned opera-director Mstislav Pentkovsky. His ambitious production in cooperation with a professional theatre and ensemble can be called an outstanding one.
Several performances of Pentkovsky's production preceded in the Volgograd Music Theater and in the Moscow Philharmonic society. Historical photographs, children’s drawings from Theresienstadt, archival film footage were part of this ambitious project. In September 2015 his production was invited to the Czech Republic. For his Brundibár project Pentkovsky was nominated for the State Prize for perfomances for children and young people in Russia.
In May 2016 Evelina Merová was invited to St. Petersburg to give testimony of their experiences.The Mikhailovsky Theatre produced a documentary with her which was shown before the performances of Brundibár at the Mikhailovsky Theatre.
Those who know Evelina's life-story will understand, that it was a very special event for Evelina, and surely also for the audience of the Brundibár-performances. In September 1945 Evelina had begun, after terrible experiences in Auschwitz-Birkenau and working-camps, a new life in Leningrad, as an adoptive child of Dr. Mer and his wife. Leningrad/St. Petersburg became her new home, and Russian her second language. So she is probably the only person who can tell in perfect Russian about Brundibár in the Theresienstadt Ghetto and about her experiences during the NS-occupation of her homeland, the Czech Republic, and her home-town Prague.
In the theatre-play about "The Girls of Room 28" by Hannelore Brenner the opera Brundibár plays a special role as does Evelina, who tried to slip in the Magdeburg barracks in order to see the children playing on stage and listen to their songs and the music. Read more about this play on:
Ab Juni: die ORF Doppel-CD:
Zum Kompendiuem erschien dieses Interview im hpd (Humanistischer Pressedienst) am 2. 5. 2017 von Evelin Frerk:
Freiberufliche Mitarbeiter/in - Buchhändlerin oder Buchhändler für verlegerische Aufbau- und Ausbau-Tätigkeit.
Edition Room 28 ist Teil von Room 28 Projects.
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