New Jerusalem, The Interrogation of Baruch de Spinoza at Talmud Torah Congregation: Amsterdam, July 27, 1656
By David Ives
Directed by Charles McMahon
October 6 - November 12, 2011
As the Inquisition bears down on them, a small Jewish community flees Portugal to find a tenuous peace in seemingly liberal Amsterdam. But Spinoza, a favorite son of the community and the rabbi's heir apparent, is a revolutionary thinker. When the boldness of his ideas strains the bounds of Amsterdam's professed tolerance, it leads to a dangerous confrontation between powerful political forces and his own beloved community. Based on true events in the life of one of the greatest philosophers in history, this recent off-Broadway hit from playwright David Ives challenges traditional political and religious thinking with conviction, passion, and wit.
"An absorbing debate over big ideas. You'll be surprised by this serious, intense drama." –The Philadelphia Inquirer
"A first-rate production of a literate and often eloquent play. Lantern Theater [Company]'s production does full justice to David Ives's challenging play of ideas." –Broad Street Review
"An engaging courtroom drama full of complex philosophical ideas... Go see New Jerusalem." –Philadelphia Jewish Voice
"Compelling... Beautifully directed by Charles McMahon." –Examiner.com
"What would an Ives play be without its humor? The language is littered with lancing and spiked spins even as the issues of theological defiance and devilishly argued arraignments of belief and faith befall one and all." –Jewish Exponent
"A lively and inspiring debate." –Philadelphia City Paper
Header Photo: Paul L. Nolan, Sally Mercer, and Charles McMahon in Copenhagen (2018); Charlie DelMarcelle, Anthony Lawton, Jered McLenigan, and Brian Anthony Wilson in The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui (2019); Anthony Lawton and Paul L. Nolan in The Craftsman (2017); and Bi Jean Ngo and Peter DeLaurier in The Tempest (2018). Photos by Mark Garvin.