BSD THE SONG OF SHABBOS: a Fantasy in Three Acts Bais Yaakov of Los AngelesDrama Production-Halleli-2001 By Shana Kramer and Kayla Kramer ACT I: SCENE 1--- Shabbos afternoon at Mindy and Tziporahs house (Two sisters, junior high school age, run up from the audience to stage right in front of curtain. Two chairs and a plant suggest a livingroom.) Mindy: Please, Tzipporah- do it again- just one more time TZ: No, Mindy! No- enough is enough! M: Oh- cmon, do it for me- Im your best sister! TZ: Youre my only sister. And thank goodness for that, I dont know if I could handle two of you! M: Verrry funny but, cmoooonn! Just do the Bais Yaakov play thingy again you know--where the Aidel Maidel starts going: Oy gevalt!TZ: Ok, ok. You want me to imitate the Bais Yaakov play again? Here goes: (grabs a scarf draped over a chair and flings it over her head and shoulders dramatically as a shawl) Hoooy gevalt! [over-acting terribly] What shall I do?? The Wicked Count has locked me in his tower, until I renounce Torah and Yiddishkeit in order to marry him! All I can do now is daven with all my heart. (practically screeching) Oy, HaShem! Please help me to escape the clutches of Wicked Count Stolitchnaya, who is really the grandson of the great tzaddik, the Shtinkenbroyne Rebbe---and who was stolen in infancy by pirates and raised in the palace to hate and despise loyal Jews like me!-- but is only now rediscovering his pinteleh yid--but doesnt know it yet!-- and thinks that he merely wants to marry me! M: (grabbing the scarf from Tzippy and tossing it around her own neck theatrically) Aidel Maidel, it is I, Wicked Count Stoletchnaya, and I have decided to release you, because I feel burning within me the tiny spark that is glowing in my heart- it burns and grows- my heart is burning--you must come with me at once to ride..(smiling mischievously) to ride to Rexall to buy some TUMS for my heartburn! TZ: TUMS for my heartburn! They didnt do that in the play!
M: I know- (flops down) but they should have- it would have been a lot more entertaining than what they did do! TZ: Yeah- (joins her on couch) I gotta admit, that play was boooooring. (Sigh) M: Talk about boring here it is again, another loooong Shabbos afternoon with nothing at all to do. TZ: Yeah- even little Shmulies off to Pirchei so therell be no fun telling him scary stories about whats waiting for him in Yeshiva Gedola. M: Yeah-(sighing) huhhhhhh TZ: Yeah- huuuuhh. M: So what do you wanna do ? TZ: I dunno- what do you wanna do ? M: sighTZ: SighM: We could go up to the a-t-t-i-c.. and look arouuunnndd TZ: Ho-kay- (stands up) Im not bored anymore! M: (grabs her arm) No- cmon- just this once TZ: No way- uh uh- theres no way youre getting me to go up there again. M: Whats ammater big sister? Not scared are you? TZ: Im not scared-(pause) Im just ladylike. Besides, its not a very Shabbosdik activity! M: Scaredy cat, scaredy cat! TZ: Im not a scaredy cat! M: RIGHT! Ever since Shmulie told us that the Maharals Golam is still up in the attic in the shul in Prague, youve been too chicken to snoop around OUR attic with me anymore! TZ: Am not! M: Are so! TZ: Oh, all-right. Even though were much too grown up for this silly, childish, make-believe, Ill go up with you one more time, just to show you that Im not scared. M: Oh- youre right- it really is too childish, well just do it this one last time(laughing conspiratorially) heh heh heh. (girls exit stage right.., sounds of stair climbing) ACT I: SCENE 2 (In Attic) (Pile of boxes and cushions stage left in front of curtain, spotlight finds girls in attic) Tz: Ho-ky Do-ky, Mindy- we came to the attic. Now lets go downstairs and be bored some more!
M: (pleading) Not yet Tzip, (grabbing her) theres still one corner weve never explored- Hey! I think I see something sticking out over there under that pile of clothes- (grunting) gimme a hand, this things heavy! Tz: Dusty too!- Haachoo! M: Gezuntheit! (Tzippy pulls on book and plops to floor) M: What IS this thing? And where on earth did it come from? TZ: Looks like some kinda huge book M: Duh! TZ: Do you think we should open it? M: No- no, lets just hold it up to the light of the window and shake it and the words will kinda fall out all over us so we could read it THAT way! TZ: Oh! gimme that! What a weird title! :The Song of Shabbos dot dot dot M: dot dot dot? Thats part of the title? TZ: Yeah thats what it says M: Well, its Shabbos today, and I like songs, so are you gonna open it, or what ? TZ: What. (finally responding to Mindys pleading look) Oh, all right, here goes (opens the book) Chapter One: Shabbos at the time of Briyas Haolam, Shabbos in the Midbar, Shabbos under the ShoftimM: -booooring- skip ahead to the good parts. TZ: Ok. Heres Shabbos during the Spanish Inquisition. M: Oh cool- we learned about that in school. It was a very creepy time- Go ahead, read! TZ: You learned something in school? (Mindy makes a face) Oh never mind(loud sigh) Here goes... Our scene begins with two Catholic girls, Maria and Esmeralda, happily playing in a courtyard in old Madrid
ACT I: SCENE 3 (Spain, early 1500s) (Curtain opens, scene of Old Madrid exterior, girls playing Cats Cradle stage left, bright sunlight. Stage right in shadowy light, Priest conducting pantomime clandestine transaction. Mindy and Tzippy remain in attic, downstage left, watching the action on stage in semi-darkness.) Esmeralda: Your turn Maria. Maria, Its your turn- what are you mumbling about?
Maria: Those sneaky rotten Jews Esmeralda: (alarmed) What? I didnt hear you. Maria: "Oh sorry, I was just thinking to myself, Esmeralda: How can the Jews of Spain pretend to accept our lord- and then keep observing their filthy customs in secret! Its disgusting! I was so happy, yesterday, when they caught that whole family of Marranos! They really ARE like pigsthey pretend to be loyal Catholics but keep on doing their Old Testament religious stuff in secret. Esmeralda: Youre talking about a Marrano family arrested by the Inquisition? (trying to sound casual) Whatever happened to them? Maria: Well, Mama says that Father Rivera tried his best to get Senor Maimon to repent his wicked Jewish ways (Esmeralda jumps back out of shock and mutters under her breath, Maimon) Maria: (extremely pleased) but they got what they deserved! Because those stubborn Jews wouldnt even consider repenting! The whole family was taken to the town square and put to death. (smiles triumphantly) (Background music stops. Esmeralda drops the cats cradle) Maria: Esmeralda, Whats going on? You dropped it--- You are usually so good at this game! Esmeralda: I have to go I mean I don't really feel well I mean, I,I just have to go! (turning away from Maria, mumbling to herself) Oh my goodness, I knew this family! I must get out of here, I can't face Maria another minute. Maria: Esmeralda? What's going on? ESM: Sorry I forgot- I must go sorry (Esmeralda runs away in a panic, bumps into the priest, gasps, falls down, looks up at him crestfallen) Priest: (helping her up) Ha ha ha, no harm done- you are certainly in a hurry! (sees her terrified face)What is wrong my child? Esmeralda: Oh, oh- oh I'm so sorry(looks up and realizes with a start that he is a priest). Father! . I thought I saw a mouse I mean a fire I mean, my mother needs me I, I mean I have to go! Preist: Wait little girl, what is your name? ESM: My name? My name is Esther--- I mean--- Esmer---I mean Esmeralda--- Oh, I really have to go!
Preist: Wait, wait (Running, crying, mumbling the whole family, even their little girl! I cant, I cant bear it any more! Im so scared!) (runs offstage stage right) Curtain closes ACT I: SCENE 4 (center stage in front of curtains Mother waiting anxiously, Esther runs to her from stage right)) Mother: (looking around furtively) Oh Esther my baby, you are here, I was so worried, I was afraid never mind you are here now, Baruch Hashem. (uses Sfardi pronunciation pause for a few seconds..) Come inside darling, come inside, it is almost Shabbat. Esmeralda: Oh Ima, it was awful, it was awful... Mommy: Tell me, tell me darling, what made you so frightened, but tell me quickly because Shabbat is almost here. ESM: (still crying) Oh, Ima, Maria told me a terrible story about the Maimon family- and she was smiling as she told it (mother gasps)I couldnt believe it(sees her mothers reaction) So it is true Ima--- Oh, I ran all the way home, Ima, hoping you would tell me it was a mistake that it wasnt them! But it is true! MOMMY: - So you know now- I am so sorry darling- we tried to protect you.. ESM: I mean, she just said it straight out- so happily(cries out) not their little girl too!... (softly)and I had to pretend I didnt know who they were Mommy: (whisper) That little girl and her family died Al Kiddush HaShem, my Esther. They are in Gan Eden now. ACT I: SCENE 5- in the Ben Yaakov family cellar (Both go center through curtaincurtain opens on a cellar room where whole family is gathered.. Silently Esther runs into her fathers arms and buries her head in his shoulders. Abba looks toward Ima and she nods to him- he understands.) Abba: I know it is difficult, Esther my dear, but we must put off our sadness until after the Shabbat. (All gather around Shabbos candles, Esther attempts to wipe away her tears, Ima pantomimes the Bracha.) Avrahami: (breaking the tension) Shabbat Shalom Ima. (kisses her hand)
(All children follow suit) Mother: These candles are so comforting, when I look at them all the horrors of the world outside seem to melt away. Avrahami: Tell me Ima, about the olden days, when you were able to light candles in the dining room instead of here in the cellar Dena: And you didn't have to be afraid whenever you went out Avrahami: And Grandfather wore his tallit outside of his jacket on his way to Beit Knesset on Shabbat Mother: Ah, it was wonderful, children, nothing like it is