Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project at the Chander Center for the Arts

The Greater Phoenix Jewish Film Festival, East Valley Jewish Community Center and City of Chandler will combine forces for a remarkable event that cannot be missed! A special theatrical production of the play Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project will be held for the public on Thursday, January 12 at the Chandler Center for the Arts located at 250 N. Arizona Avenue, Chandler. This is part of the city’s Celebration of Unity, a series of events the East Valley city holds in January to honor its community’s heritage and diversity, along with the spirit, ideals, life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the Civil Rights movement.

This dynamic play touches on the Holocaust, ethics, education, respect and unsung heroes and brings a message of hope, not despair. The performance will be followed by a question and answer session with the current cast, director and some of the original cast members who started the Irena Sendler movement.

The Irena Sendler movement began in a small classroom in a small town in the Midwest. In 1989, four high-school girls from rural Kansas wrote and performed a play as part of a history class assignment that brought worldwide attention to Irena Sendler’s accomplishments and ultimately led to Irena being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Irena was a Polish Christian woman who helped save 2,500 Jewish children from death in the Warsaw Ghetto. Behind Irena Sendler’s story is an important lesson: tikkun olam – one person can make a difference.

The Greater Phoenix Jewish Film Festival uses the filmed version of Life in A Jar as the keystone for its Films in the Schools youth outreach program. Carefully trained presenters bring films into public and religious schools (7th-12th grade) to help teach the sensitive topic of the Holocaust. Film as a medium allows young people to learn on a different level; characters, legends and stories that may seem difficult to understand come alive on the screen. This is especially important when trying to convey the magnitude of the Holocaust. Since the school program began seven years ago, the GPJFF has shared this film with over 3,500 secular and religious school students.

On Friday, January 13, 800 Chandler area high school students will be bussed to the Chandler Center for the Arts for a high school-only assembly and free presentation of the play.

Co-sponsors for Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project also include the Consulate General of the Republic of Poland, the Phoenix Holocaust Survivors Association, Generations After, Jewish Tuition Organization, and the Jewish Federation of Greater Phoenix.

To purchase tickets call 480-897-0588, email [email protected], or visit the East Valley Jewish Community Center at 908 N. Alma School Rd., Chandler.

Performance Details:

What: Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project

When: Thursday, January 12 from 6:30–8:00 p.m.; open to general public

Where: Chandler Center for the Arts, 250 N. Arizona Ave, Chandler

Cost: $10 general admission; $5 Student (up to 25 yrs. old)