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Paradox Players Present the Historical Drama 'New Jerusalem'

JoAnna Johnson

In 1656, Jewish philosopher Baruch Spinoza was the subject of an intense interrogation in his family’s adopted hometown of Amsterdam. At the time, the Inquisition was at full power in Spain and Portugal; the Dutch considered themselves a more tolerant people, and allowed Jews to live in the city, albeit with certain constraints: they weren’t considered citizens but resident aliens, and they were allowed to practice their faith but not to discuss it with Christians.

In this environment, free thinker Spinoza came under the critical eye of not only the Christian hierarchy but of his own Jewish community as well. New Jerusalem: The Interrogation of Baruch de Spinoza at Talmud Torah Congregation: Amsterdam, July 27, 1656 by playwright David Ives, dramatizes this pivotal day in the life of the philosopher.

The production by Paradox Players is directed by Gary Payne and stars Carl Guthie, Rick Felkins, and Craig Kanee.

New Jerusalem October 11 – 27 Fridays and Saturdays at 8:00 pm; Sundays at 3:00 pm At Howson Hall at First UU Church, 4700 Grover Avenue

Mike is the production director at KUT, where he’s been working since his days as an English major at the University of Texas. He produces Arts Eclectic, Get Involved, and the Sonic ID project, and also produces videos and cartoons for When pressed to do so, he’ll write short paragraphs about himself in the third person, but usually prefers not to.
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