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About this show

The Lex-Ham Community Theater, the St. Paul Jewish Community Center, the Czech and Slovak Cultural Center, Czech and Slovak Sokol Minnesota, the Good Samaritan United Methodist Church of Edina, and Blank Slate Theater come together to present the U.S. premiere of a powerful work written at Terezin, known in German as Theresienstadt, a concentration camp near Prague during WW II. Although not a death camp as such, Terezin was a ghetto that for thousands of Jews was a prison stop before their deportation to death camps like Auschwitz. The Last Cyclist was an absurdist allegory that expanded a gallows-humor joke being told by Jews in Europe in the years between the two World Wars: "The cyclists and the Jews are responsible for all of our misfortunes." "Why the cyclists?" To which the rejoinder is, "Why the Jews?" Although the original play was seen by many of the camp inmates during the production's open rehearsals, it was shut down after the dress rehearsal by the Council of Jewish Elders (a puppet "self-government" set up by the Nazis to run the internal affairs of the camp) who feared Nazi reprisal because of the daring explicitness of the satire. This play, an example of the remarkable cultural creativity that flourished under horrendous circumstances, is a testament to the vitality and resilience of the human spirit. The Last Cyclist illuminates a little known aspect of Jewish spiritual resistance during the Holocaust. LOCATIONS The CSPS Sokol Hall 383 Michigan Street Saint Paul, MN 7:30 p.m., June 5 and 6 2:00 p.m., Sunday, June 7. The St. Paul JCC 1375 St. Paul Avenue St. Paul, MN 7:30 p.m., Thursday, June 11 2:00 p.m., Sunday, June 14. Good Samaritan United Methodist Church 5730 Grove Street Edina, MN 7:30 p.m., Friday, June 12 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 13. First Baptist Church 499 Wacouta Street Saint Paul, MN 7:30 p.m., Friday, June 19 7:30 p.m., Saturday, June 20.

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