Epic Story About Combating Racism

Epic Story About Combating Racism

Co-produced by Hub Theatre and Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia.

— Building robust community partnerships for the Fairfax County performing arts

Where and When

Hub Theatre and the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia (JCCNV) present “The Secrets of the Universe (and other songs),” at the JCCNV, 8900 Little River Turnpike, Fairfax. Performance, Sunday, Oct. 14, 2017 at 4 p.m. Tickets: $16 (general admission), $14 (JCCNV members, $12 for groups of 15 or more. Call 703-323-0880 or visit www.jccnv.org.

scene, Fairfax’s Helen Hayes Award recipient Hub Theatre and the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia (JCCNV) are developing a staged reading of a new play. The play is “The Secrets of the Universe (and other songs)” based on little-known actions to combat racism from two towering figures of American society, Marian Anderson and Albert Einstein.

The play, with songs by Helen Hayes Award recipient Marc Acito, is “about the union of hearts, minds, and souls in a quest to unlock the secrets of the universe,” said Helen Murray, artistic director, Hub Theatre. “Einstein and Anderson are two incredible figures, both able to reach beyond themselves to a higher understanding of the world, meeting and forming a friendship.”

Presenting this original drama will “enrich our collective audiences,” said Jeff Dannick, executive director, JCCNV. “Here is a unique opportunity to observe


Photo Contributed

Helen Murray, Artistic Director, Hub Theatre

and enjoy a unique relationship between two historic giants. Eighty years after their extraordinary meeting, the themes and issues brought forward in the play continue to resonate.”

Asked about the reading and the artistic process Murray said, “this is a workshopped staged reading of a play in progress. So no costumes or props, just music stands and actors with scripts. The cast will include professional actors from the area.”

The reading also provides an opportunity for the audience to provide their informed feedback.

Playwright Acito is expected at the performance to take in what he sees and hears from the actors and audience alike, to further develop the script on its next step to full production.

Murray went on to say, “it is exciting to have a partner in bringing this show to our community. With the help of JCCNV we will be able to reach a broader audience with the messages found in this play – ones of tolerance, friendship and diversity.”

“Our institutions are very different in purpose and structure, but whenever our


Photo Contributed

Jeff Dannick, Executive Director, Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia

missions align, this partnership delivers amazing experiences for our audiences. It demonstrates the best in what makes Northern Virginia such a special place to live,” said Dannick.

“The Secrets of the Universe (and other songs)” is a message of tolerance, friendship and diversity. It aims to depict personal and public struggles to overcome racial prejudice where and when it can occur. For this show, It started with being denied a hotel room.