15600 Mulholland Drive
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The Promise: A Zeisl Concert
Featuring the Jacob and Rachel ballet with BODYTRAFFIC and Students and Alumni of UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music with actor Fred Melamed as Narrator.
In 1954, American Jewish University, then University of Judaism, commissioned their Head of Theatre Arts, Benjamin Zemach, and Austrian émigré composer Erich Zeisl to create a ballet based on the biblical love story of Jacob and Rachel. Due to lack of funds for the full orchestra that Zeisl insisted upon, the ballet was never staged at UJ or anywhere else, until fifty-five years later.
In 2009, the Los Angeles Jewish Symphony and then newly-created local dance troupe BODYTRAFFIC gave Jacob and Rachel its World Premiere at the Wadsworth Theatre, to great critical and popular acclaim. “Confident professionalism was in evidence across every performance element, décor, costume lighting and in the super-contemporary choreography requiring robust modern dance technique.” (Debra Levine, Freelance Dance Critic LA Times, LA Opinion) On August 26, 2018, the LAJS and BODYTRAFFIC -- now a world-renowned dance company -- will finally bring Jacob and Rachel back to its original home!
The Promise represents Laban’s promise of his daughter Rachel to Jacob in exchange for seven years of labor. Laban tricked Jacob into marrying Leah first; Jacob had to serve and wait an additional seven years for the promise to be fulfilled.
Join us at the Gindi Auditorium on August 26, 2018, for this double fulfillment: the promised lovers are finally united in a brilliant ballet that returns home to AJU!