Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Spankings and Suicide in Jewish Slice-of-Life Play

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Spankings and Suicide in Jewish Slice-of-Life Play

Article excerpt

Byline: Louise Jury Chief Arts Correspondent

A SURPRISING slice of London Jewish life including a suburban spanking club, Catholic converts and suicide is to be revealed in a new play taken from true stories.

Award-winning actor-writer Kerry Shale, a Canadian Jew, and director Matthew Lloyd, who is not Jewish, put a call out for participants willing to say what family meant for them for the production at the new [pounds sterling]40 million JW3 cultural centre on Finchley Road.

"The suburban spanking club was possibly the most unexpected," Shale said. A Jewish Rasta told them how his father established the club in Ruislip after his wife died.

But other stories being told verbatim in the play, called Listen, We're Family, revolve around mental illness, food and rifts so bad that the daughter of one adulterous man moved in with a family down the road.

Shale, 61, who lives in Islington, said: "There was lots of frank stuff. There's a fair amount of bad language, a fair amount of bad behaviour. …

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