New York City
Will the U.S. bomb Iran?
It’s been stressed that Benedictus is the creation of a collaboration of Iranian, Israeli and American artists, departing from a traditional model of theatre-making.
In development since 2005 and eerily prescient, Benedictus posits the U.S. ready to bomb Iran. With war and horrific devastation and bloodletting only 48 hours away, three men hold the key to averting international tragedy: Ali Kermani, an Iranian clergyman and politician who is also a leader in Iran’s reformist movement; Asher Muthada, an Israeli arms dealer who fled his native Iran after being tortured by the Khomeini revolutionary regime; and Ben Martin, an American ambassador who had been a hostage in the 1979 U.S. Embassy seizure in Teheran.
Martin would like to help, but will only go so far. He’s a point person who represents American foreign policy, a tool of the U.S. government. Ali Kermani wants Iran to survive for a future with greater individual human rights and personal freedoms; Asher Muthada drives for the release of his sister from an Iranian prison. Kermani and Muthada had been the closest of friends in the past. The passage of years and their lives in opposing countries have inserted some distance between them. Can they possibly put aside their considerable differences to achieve a solution that will save the lives of perhaps millions of people? They have only 48 hours. Can they possibly succeed in time?
Written by Motti Lerner, and translated from the Hebrew by Anthony Berris.
Developed in collaboration with Mahmood Karimi-Hakak, Roberta Levitow, Daniel Michaelson, and Torange Yeghiazarian.
Final performance: December 17, 2023
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