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The Theatre Arts Series at B’nai Torah:
Shari Upbin


                                          February 3, 2016
“Ragen is… a champion of those who have no voice.”  ~ Amazon.com

BOCA RATON, FL: Naomi Ragen’s powerful play, Women’s Minyan resonates as deeply today as it did when it premiered in July 2002 at Habima National Theater in Tel Aviv.  A powerful and fascinating exploration of religious fundamentalism in a patriarchal society, the play is based on a true story.  Women’s Minyan will be performed at Boca Raton’s B’nai Torah on February 3, 2016 in the Weiner Auditorium.

Chana Sheinhoff, is the respected Rabbi’s wife in an ultra-Orthodox community in Jerusalem. After years of abuse by her husband, she breaks her silence only to find herself excommunicated and forcibly separated from her twelve children. She convenes a ‘minyan’ (a quorum) of women asking them to decide her worthiness to be reunited with her children.  Hearing for the first time what led to her divorce, this group of women explores the boundaries between religion and social convention, truth and falsehood, and women’s true place in the religious world.

Producer Shari Upbin, one of the driving forces behind B’nai Torah’s Theatre Arts Series, will direct Women’s Minyan.   The production will feature Faiza Cherie as Chana Sheinhoff, along with Rene Barrett, Fern Katz, Abby Linker, Peggy Linker, Ellie Murray, Clelia Patrizio, Renee Rogoff, Phyllis Spear, and Skylar Voelker.  Jeffrey Bruce will provide the voice of the Rabbi.  Sound design for the production is by Carbonell Award-winner Matt Corey and lighting design is by Sean Cutler, Artistic Director of Ft. Lauderdale Children’s Theatre and winner of the 2015 BroadwayWorld.com Best Director of a Musical award.  Live music will accompany the production.

Women’s Minyan has received universally rave reviews whenever and wherever the play has been produced, and praise for Upbin’s production of the play, which ran at the West Boca Theatre Company at the Levis Jewish Community Center in Boca Raton in November 2012 was unanimous.

Women’s Minyan will run for one performance, only – on Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016, at 7:30 pm at Congregation B’nai Torah in Boca Raton.  Tickets are $36 ($25 for congregational members), and may be purchased by calling 561-392-8566 or on line at www.bnai-torah.org.  Group rates are available.

For more information about Women’s Minyan or Shari Upbin, please contact Carol Kassie at ckassie@gmail.com / 561-445-9244.

Women’s Minyan
by Naomi Ragen
Produced and Directed By Shari Upbin
February 3rd, 2016
7:30 pm
Tickets:  $36 ($25 for congregational members)
Phone: 561-392-8566
B’nai Torah Congregation
The Weiner Auditorium
6261 SW 18th Street
Boca Raton, FL 33433

Shari2Shari Upbin:
Shari Upbin (Producer/Director) has been a theatre professional since the age of 13 when she became a member of Actors Equity. (Her father was a writer for Jack Benny). She has been a professional tap dancer and choreographer and is a member of the Society of Stage Directors and Choreographers; she was the president of the League of Professional Theatre Women/New York for seven years, and is currently President of the National Society Of Arts And Letters, Florida East Coast Chapter.
Shari has produced and directed over 50 productions in New York and around the country. Her directing Credits include Vincent, The Passions Of The Artist Van Gogh, Danny And Sylvia at the Forum Theatre in New Jersey. Other credits include Life With Father,  Fiddler On The Roof, Cabaret, Jacques Brel, and The Roar Of The Greasepaint; she was awarded Best Director for her production of Side By Side By Sondheim. Shari will be producing the national classical ballet competition En Pointe in South Florida in 2017.
Along with Women’s Minyan, some of Shari’s Florida directing credits include Broadway Live! and Hollywood Live!, Confessions Of A Jewish Shiksa Dancing On Hitler’s Grave at the Kravis Center, Dames In Divaland, From Door to Door, and In the Voice of Our Mothers (at the Posner JCC).
Shari served as assistant director to the world renowned British Director Michael Langham for the first Black/Hispanic Julius Caesar and Coriolanus at the New York Shakespeare Festival with Joe Papp starring Morgan Freeman.
Shari Upbin and Sandi Durell have been long time producing partners in Hollywood Live! and Broadway Live! as well as the Manhattan Association of Cabaret Award nominated Timeless Divas! series with hosts Ben Verreen, Tony Randall,  Karen Mason,  Tovah Feldshuh , Phyllis Newman, and Leslie Uggams.  Shari is currently teaching a master class, and will be staging Tony Finstrom’s Wave Your Flag for the Jan McArt Playwright’s Series at Lynn University.

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