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“Roger Grunwald's The Mitzvah Project was a highlight of The German Society’s programme of events. His deep concern for questions of identity touched the young Germans in the audience and gave us a chance to viscerally experience what it meant to be a German Jew. Many audience members, myself included, were taken by how much his study of identity challenges our thinking about nationality, religion and indeed culture.”  — Henner Petin, President, German Society, Oxford University

"Roger Grunwald manages to combine art and history in his dazzling performance of The Mitzvah Project. Seldom have I witnessed the ability of an actor to infuse characters with such passion and clarity so as to make time travel a reality. When watching Roger perform, you never have to suspend disbelief to savor the moment and the significance of his message. Today, when events unfold with terrifying velocity, it's critically important to remember the past. Just one of the many reasons not to miss Roger's mission and mastery."  — William S. Cohen, Former United States Senator/Secretary of Defense

“Roger Grunwald presents an intense and riveting theatrical experience, followed by a mini-lecture and conversation that illuminates a little-known aspect of the Shoah. Our members were deeply engaged in pondering the moral dimensions of Hitler’s part-Jewish collaborators, as well as contemporary dilemmas around race and bigotry.” — Rabbi Janet Marder, Congregation Beth Am, Los Altos Hills, CA 

“Roger Grunwald’s Mitzvah Project is a powerful play and a painful reminder of the snares and danger that our loss of humanity might engender. This lesson for the future, a memento mori, is at the core of Roger Grunwald’s extraordinary work.” — Professor Manuela Consonni, Director, The Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism, Hebrew University, Jerusalem 

 

“Roger Grunwald's Mitzvah Project is a stunning piece of theater, and an illuminating discussion of German-Jewish history. Roger's remarkable performance enabled my students to engage in a powerful way with the complex mechanisms of family history and the Holocaust. It was the highlight of the semester.” —  Leslie Morris, Ph.D., Director, Center for Jewish Studies, University of Minnesota

“The Mitzvah Project is a… powerful, moving, and compelling performance… that forces [the audience] to confront the moral ambiguity of the Holocaust, reflect on the distorted logic of racial laws, and relive the impossible moral choices that ordinary people were forced to make in order to survive…. the performance is followed by a short lecture [in which] Grunwald reminds the audience that German racial laws took their cue from the Eugenics laws enacted in the United States during the 1920s…"  — Hava Tirosh-Samuelson, Ph.D., Director, Center for Jewish Studies. Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ

“Roger Grunwald's "The Mitzvah Project" transported me… in a way I would not have thought possible. His acting is superb and through his characters he takes us to scenes of unimaginable horror and crimes against humanity… and shows us through two flickers of light, two “mitzvahs,” that human kindness, compassion, and the ability to to find justice and peace for another, triumphs.  The emotions that we feel from Roger's depictions are over-whelming and reinforce that we must NEVER forget. Now, more then ever before, we must be ever vigilant that despots and would-be despots cannot be allowed to target others for their religion, the color of their skin, their political beliefs, their gender identity/expression, their abilities/disabilities — and the list goes on.” — Carmen Suarez, Ph.D., Vice President, Global Diversity & Inclusion, Portland State University

"You could hear a pin drop in the audience of The Mitzvah Project, a one man theatrical mini masterpiece, performed by the very talented Roger Grunwald.  This rarely told historical lesson about the Holocaust is delivered as a riveting theatrical performance by Grunwald. It is extremely relevant today as we face a new wave of genocide, intolerance and bullying. A must see!”  — Patti L. Wertheimer, Board President, Jewish Federation, Sarasota-Manatee

"Roger Grunwald teaches the gut-wrenching history of Jews in Nazi Germany through a combination of a brilliant stage performance and intimate conversation with audience members thereafter. He seamlessly connects the struggles and experiences of ordinary Jews during the Second World War with those of African Americans under Jim Crow and Muslim refugees and immigrants today. He offers a humanistic pathway forward not only by cautioning against the ways in which we 'other' groups of people based on notions of 'race,' but by modeling a kind of warmth and openness that will touch anyone's heart.” — Dr. Omar H. Ali, Historian and Dean, Lloyd International Honors College, The University of North Carolina, Greensboro

The Mitzvah Project is a well thought-out, well-prepared, and well-executed masterpiece by Roger Grunwald... For those looking to see a modern, novel, and intimate engagement with the Holocaust, The Mitzvah Project is a must-see. — David A. Meola, Ph. D., Bert & Fanny Meisler Assistant Professor of History and Jewish Studies, University of South Alabama

 

"The Mitzvah Project… is totally extraordinary… watching the performance and listening to Mr. Grunwald speak makes for an incredibly powerful evening.” — Miriam Berger, Senior Rabbi, Finchley Reform Synagogue, London

 

"The Mitzvah Project should be required viewing for anyone wishing to learn about a nearly-silent chapter of Holocaust history.  People will be forced to take a deep look inside themselves to determine the nature of their hearts, and just what we would do at any cost to try and stay alive."  — Dr. Rick Halperin, Director, Embrey Human Rights Program, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas
 

“Roger Grunwald’s unique experiment in combining a heart-wrenching performance with a historical mini-lecture works like magic… German men classified as Jewish or half-Jewish by the Nazis fought in Hitler’s army? By the time you leave the spell-binding event, you understand.” — Björn Krondorfer, Director, Martin-Springer Institute & Endowed Professor of Religious Studies, Northern Arizona University

 

“The Mitzvah Project, Roger Grunwald’s unmissable piece of theatre, is both expanded and deepened by his detailed analysis of his own family biography, the origins of the story, and what it means for the way we confront prejudice and discrimination in the present day.” — Dr. Stuart Taberner, Professor of Contemporary German Literature, Culture and Society, University of Leeds (U.K.)

 

“The Mitzvah Project is an inspiring piece that goes into the heart and complexity of current issues of prejudice, bullying, racial tension, genocide and war, which are presented within the historical context of The Holocaust.  The lecture and Q&A that follow the one-person drama produce an invaluable social tool for educators and a must-see for those creating and deciding the future of our country.” — Mónica Olague-Marchán, Ph.D., Inclusivity Leader / Family Liaison, Catholic Memorial High School, Waukesha, WI

 

“Roger Grunwald delivers a powerful performance in his one-person show, The Mitzvah, further enhanced by his lecture — equal parts history lesson and personal revelation. His audience cannot help but be moved, informed and enriched. Our patrons are still talking about it.” — Lillian Polus Gerstner, Director of Public Programs, Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center, Skokie, IL

 

“Combining a gripping play with a moving lecture and conversation, Roger Grunwald’s Mitzvah Project brings a fascinating new perspective to the complex and conflicted history of the German Jew.” — Dr. Shay Pilnik, Executive Director, Nathan and Esther Pelz Holocaust Education Resource Center, Milwaukee, WI

 

“Roger Grunwald’s presentation of The Mitzvah Project — his play and lecture — is of the highest professional, academic, and artistic quality. His combination of the dramatically intense play, well-researched lecture, and thoughtful and personally revealing talk-back creates an astonishing experience!” — Liz Feldstern, Executive Director, Institute for Holocaust Education, Omaha, NE

 

“Roger Grunwald’s The Mitzvah Project was a compelling and enormously informative program. The story of “Mischlinge” serving in the Nazi Army is a surprising and little known reality that we should know more about. His performance and lecture enriched us so much here in Milwaukee. Kudos.” — Jody Hirsh Director of Judaic Education Harry & Rose Samson Family JCC, Milwaukee, WI

 

"The Mitzvah Project is an eye-opening look at a virtually unknown story of World War II.  Roger Grunwald's performance is riveting, and his post-performance presentation is memorable - seldom has a history lesson made such an impact."  — Philip C. Sneed, Executive Director, Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities, Colorado

 

“Our Catholic-Jewish Dialogue Committee has welcomed many speakers to share their scholarly research with our college community. However, few presenters have affected our attendees so profoundly as did Roger Grunwald. His innovative and commanding performance convincingly portrayed a wide range of conflicted feelings of both the victims and perpetrators of The Holocaust. His post-performance interactive lecture and discussion even more personalized the themes raised in his play, especially when he shared his own family’s story under National Socialism. I highly recommend attending and experiencing The Mitzvah Project!”  — Kevin P. Spicer, C.S.C., Stonehill College, MA

 

Roger Grunwald's [presentation] of The Mitzvah Project was deeply moving… [He] is an outstanding actor with a deep understanding of the complicated situation of German-speaking Jews during World War II… His performance is a must-see for all those interested in Jewish history, in particular the Holocaust.” — Professor Amy-Diana Colin, University of Pittsburgh, Department of German, President of the City for the Cultures of Peace

 

“Roger [Grunwald has] shed light on a little-known and shocking historical truth in The Mitzvah, his mesmerizing, tragic, and at times ironically humorous one-man show. In my opinion, every Jewish organization should invite [him] to present The Mitzvah Project, an important and challenging examination of history.”

 — Andrea Winograd, Executive Director of the Holocaust Museum & Study Center, Suffern, NY 

 

"The Mitzvah Project is enrichment for the heart and the mind. Mr. Grunwald sheds light on an important aspect of the European Jewish story... It is a powerful evening of learning and reflection."

— Rabbi Jacqueline Mates-Muchin, Temple Sinai, Oakland, CA

 

“Grunwald’s story-telling is riveting, clear and original throughout. I have written previously on Holocaust drama and on memory and performance (NY TIMES; 25 February, 2001) and was delighted to find The Mitzvah both unique and on the highest level among these works…” — Cindy Rosenthal, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Drama and Dance, Hofstra University​

 

“I was proud to present Roger Grunwald in his provocative and unique piece - The Mitzvah Project. [He] is a gifted actor who brought himself beautifully to the original material… Bravo!" —  Pamela Moller Kareman, Executive Director, The Neighborhood Playhouse School of The Theatre and Artistic Director, The Schoolhouse Theater 

 

“…The Mitzvah is an important piece of cultural discourse as well as a marvelous piece of theater, co-written and acted by a gifted and versatile playwright and performer.” — Rabbi Shalom M. Paltiel, Chabad of Port Washington                                            

“Roger Grunwald has taken a little-known piece of Holocaust history and transformed it into an emotionally searing presentation…”  —  Dr. Arthur Flug, Executive Director, The Harriet & Kenneth Kupferberg Holocaust Resource Center & Archives

 

“Our students found Roger Grunwald’s performance both inspirational and informative. His talents and thorough knowledge of the subject matter is both impressive and exemplary. [In The Mitzvah Project he] brings to life an important and overlooked aspect of the Holocaust… in an imaginative, creative and original way. His commitment to honor his parents by continuing to tell the story of The Shoah and to educate the next generation is remarkable [and] his ability to make history come to life is uncanny.” — Rabbi Joshua Spodek and Yehudis Benhamou, Scheck Hillel Community School, Florida

 

“Roger Grunwald’s performance was compelling, his presentation enlightening, and the entire evening a powerful experience for us all.” — Rabbi Ted Riter, Beth Israel Congregation, Jackson, MS

 

“Mr. Grunwald’s performance was brilliant!  The transition between characters was flawless and his lecture thought provoking.  We thank him for his presentation of this mostly unknown, but relevant piece of history with our community.”— Brian M. Kendall, Cultural Supervisor, Historic Fifth Street School, Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Las Vegas

 

 The Mitzvah is a deeply disturbing performatory meditation on the malleability of human nature… In a world in which genocides continue and violence and barbarism are spreading, getting The Mitzvah performed all over the country is important.” — Dan Friedman, Ph.D., Artistic Director, Castillo Theatre​

 

“Roger Grunwald did an amazing job presenting The Mitzvah Project, his fascinating one-person show, lecture and talk-back.” — Heather Paul, Director of Student Engagement, Hillel at Stanford

 

“The Mitzvah Project was thought provoking… and haunting… Roger [is] a consummate professional… [who] demonstrated a vast knowledge of the subject matter…”— Frances B. Pearlman, Director of Lifelong Learning, Congregation Habonim, New York City.

 

“Roger… put on a stellar performance in our theatre…filled to capacity with college staff, students, and community members. The audience was absolutely spellbound by his remarkable portrayal...” — Ali Botein-Furrevig, Ph.D., Associate Professor of English, Ocean County College and Director, The Center for Peace, Genocide, and Holocaust Studies  

What people are saying about

The Mitzvah Project

 

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