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Adagio Teas
   Features  >  LATEST LONDON NEWS

at the Royal Court

Published March 1 2009

The row surrounding Seven Jewish Children, Caryl Churchill's response to Israel's Operation Cast Lead in Gaza, has continued in London after the ten-minute play's run finished at the Royal Court on Feb. 21.

Complaints that the play is anti-Semetic have been strongly denied by Churchill and the Royal Court's artistic director Dominic Cooke.

Churchill, the Royal Court's most revered living playwright, wrote the play as a response to Israel's attack on Gaza and has made the work available for anyone to perform on condition that there will be no admission charge and that each performance will be accompanied by a collection for Medical Aid for Palestinians.

The play has been attacked by leading British Jewish figures including actress Maureen Lipman and Oscar-winning screenwriter and playwright Ronald Harwood.

The play has reportedly been offered to American theatre companies including Los Angeles-based Rude Guerilla and the New York Theatre Workshop which three years ago faced criticism for cancelling a production of My Name is Rachel Corrie which was based on the diaries of a pro-Palestinian activist who was killed by an Israeli bulldozer in 2003.

In a letter to London's Jewish Chronicle, the Royal Courts artistic director Cooke refuted many of the claims by the play's critics. "While anti-Semitism or racism in any form is abhorrent, it's presence in the world cannot be used as a reason for silencing artists who wish to speak out about political issues", said Cooke.



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