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JArts TheaterWorks: God’s Honest Truth

Actor and scholar Annette Miller

JArts Ideas Series

Roberta and Larry have just purchased a miraculous Holocaust Torah for their synagogue. So why does the shul in the next town have one, too?

This is the premise of God’s Honest Truth, a new play by Renee Calarco, winner of the 2014 Jewish Plays Project. This first reading in the new JArts TheaterWorks series will be directed by DeDe Jacobs-Komisar and feature Boston theater treasure Annette Miller, the original star of Golda’s Balcony. Join us for a reading, followed by conversation.

Reading cast:

Annette Miller  has performed on B’way, off B’way, in Boston and many regional theaters, as well in Film and Television. She has been a leading actor for the past 19 years with Shakespeare and CO. in Lenox Ma. She is a member of the Actor’s Equity union as well as the Screen Actors Guild and American Federation of Radio and Television Artists and a former member of the Mass. Foundation for the Human Annette received an American Bicentennial Grant to do a PBS program on Women of the American Revolution. She originated the role of Golda in “Golda’s Balcony” by William Gibson for which she received the the 2003 Elliot Norton Award and the IRNE (independent Reviewers of New England) award for Outstanding Actress. Annette also received the 2009 Elliot Norton Award nomination for Martha Mitchell in “Martha Mitchell Calling” and the 2012 prestigious Florida Carbonel Award nomination for her performance as Vi in “August Osage County” and in 2012 Annette excellence in the Arts and received an Excellency in Performing Arts Award from the Boston Children’s Theater. Annette also received a special award for her contribution to the Arts from the Northeastern Region Hadassah. She won accolades for her most recent performance of Maria Callas in the 2013 Shakespeare and Co Production of “Master Class.” In the summer of 2016 Annette will be featured in the play Sotto Voce by Pulitzer Prize wining playwright Nilo Cruz at Shakespeare and Co.

Jason Slavick  is the Artistic Director of Liars & Believers, an experimental theatre company in residence at the Boston Center for the Arts. With the LAB he has written and directed 7 original shows and has toured the east coast. His shows won awards at the New York Musical Theatre Festival in 2012 and 2013. He was commissioned by Outside the Box 2015 to create Yellow Bird Chase and was commissioned by The Boston Conservatory to create Heaven & Hell: The Fantastical Temptation of the 7 Deadly Sins in 2007. As a company member of Boston Theatre Works, Jason directed many Shakespeare plays and developed new works, including Emily Mann’s critically acclaimed Meshugah. He earned his MFA from The Trinity Repertory Conservatory, and studied at the Dell Arte International School of Physical Theatre, the Eugene O’Neill National Theatre Institute, and the Warsaw Theatre Academy in Warsaw, Poland. Jason has been the theatre teacher at Gann Academy for 17 years and loves his students dearly.

Barbara Wallace Grossman  Professor of Drama at Tufts University, Barbara Wallace Grossman is a theater historian, voice specialist, director and author whose publications include Funny Woman: The Life and Times of Fanny Brice and A Spectacle of Suffering: Clara Morris on the American Stage. A presidential appointee to the National Council on the Arts (1994-1999) and the United States Holocaust Memorial Council (2000-2005), she has been Vice Chair of the Massachusetts Cultural Council since 2007 and recently completed her term of service on the Leadership Council for Boston Creates, a community-wide effort to build a shared vision for Boston’s creative future. She continues her long affiliation with the American Repertory Theater as a member of its Board of Advisors and also serves on the Anti-Defamation League’s New England Regional Board, as well as on the Artistic Advisory Board for JArts (the Jewish Arts Collaborative). A founding member of IMAGe (Initiative on Mass Atrocities and Genocide) at Tufts, she chairs the Academic Awards Committee and the Graduate School of Arts and Science’s Executive Committee, and is a member of the Academic Standing and Honors Committee. Inducted into the Delta Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa at Tufts in 2010 in recognition of her contribution to the arts and the university community, she won the GSAS Outstanding Service Award in spring 2015.

Arthur Waldstein  was last seen in Informed Consent at the Apollinaire Theatre. Area credits include Blood on The Snow (Bostonian Society), Into The Woods (Norton and IRNE, Outstanding Musical), Follies, Kiss Me Kate and Blythe Spirit (Lyric Stage), The Cherry Orchard (Actors Shakespeare Project), Much Ado About Nothing (Arts After Hours), Reflections of a Rock Lobster (Boston Children’s Theatre), Romeo and Juliet (Happy Medium Theatre), The Fantasticks (Fiddlehead Theatre), A Man of No Importance and Arcadia (IRNE Outstanding Production) (bad habit productions), 42nd Street and Miracle on 34th Street (Stoneham Theatre), Hello, Goodbye, Peace (The Theater Offensive), A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Othello (Commonwealth Shakespeare Company), To The Orchard (Boston University), and Genesis of Genesis and The Seagull (Chekhov Theater Company). He has been seen as Arnolphe in School for Wives, Touchstone in As You Like It, George in All My Sons and Creon in Jean Anouilh’s Antigone, and is a seasoned performer of the Gilbert and Sullivan patter parts. He is a member of Harvard’s Bok Center Players, an improvisational theater group that uses theater to help university faculty and researchers learn how to deal with the social and cultural issues they face in their work. This summer he will be recreating the role of Harrison Gray in a revival of Blood On The Snow at the Old State House. A retired lawyer, Arthur lives in Boston with his wife, Andrea.

Jesse Garlick  is a theatre maker and educator located in Boston. Off-Broadway credits include Good (PTP/NYC). Regional credits include Good, Assassins (New Repertory
Theatre), Journey to the West, Arcadia (Central Square Theatre), Beowulf (Poets Theatre), Salome (Bridge Repertory Company), A Midsummer Nights Dream (Classic Repertory Company), Who Would Be King, Yellow Bird Chase and Talk to Strangers (Liars&Believers). Jesse is also a faculty member at the ECI department at Boston Ballet and is the freshman drama teacher at Newton South High School. He received his BFA in Acting from Boston University and has studied at the Dell’Arte Program in Arezzo, Italy. He can next be seen in Hamlet (Brown Box Theatre Project) touring this summer through Massachusetts and Maryland.

Josephine Elwood

Richard Snee  has been acting in Boston for over thirty years. He has appeared with The Boston Children’s Theatre, The Jewish Theatre of New England , The Huntington Theatre, The American Repertory Theatre, The Lyric stage, The Speakeasy Stage, The Nora Theatre, The Gloucester Stage, and the Boston company of “Shear Madness”, among others. He is a founding member of the Actors’ Shakespeare Project, and is slated to appear in their production of Eugene Ionesco’s “Exit the King” in the fall.


“I love that Renee’s play is based on this crazy true story, and then gets to really question the stories we tell ourselves. Her ideas are totally contemporary, but connect to deep roots.”

—Jewish Plays Project Artistic Director David Winitsky

About the playwright:

Renee Calarco  is a writer, teacher and performer based in Washington, DC. Her plays include The Religion Thing (2013 nominee for the Charles MacArthur Award for Outstanding New Play), Short Order Stories (2007 recipient of the Charles MacArthur Award), The Mating of Angela Weiss, Bleed, and others. Her plays have been produced, developed, and commissioned by Theater J, Charter Theater, Geva Theatre, Project Y, Adventure Theatre, Doorway Arts Ensemble, and the Source Theatre Festival. Renee teaches both playwriting and comedy improv at The Theatre Lab, and playwriting at George Washington University.

Delve into questions of Jewish life and identity through this new play reading series, all read and directed by theater professionals. Each reading will be followed by a conversation that helps unpack the work and the Jewish story behind it. The final two events of this series will be directed by Barbara Wallace Grossman and Becky Price (information coming soon — please email us if you have questions).

Event information

June 5th, 2017
7:30 pm


Pay what you wish


Gann Academy

333 Forest St
Waltham, MA 02452 United States

Parking Information

Ample parking is available in the lot outside the school.