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Northwestern Premieres New Play ‘Aimee And Jaguar’

Playwright Lillian Groag to participate in post-show discussions

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January 23, 2014 | by Judy Moore
“Aimee and Jaguar” will be performed at Northwestern’s Josephine Louis Theater from Jan. 31 through Feb. 9.

EVANSTON, Ill. --- “Aimee and Jaguar,” a new play based on a true but tragic love story that took place in World War II Germany, will be presented as part of the Theatre and Interpretation Center (TIC) at Northwestern University’s 2013-14 Mainstage Season.

TIC’s production will be performed from Jan. 31 to Feb. 9 at the Josephine Louis Theater, 20 Arts Circle Drive, on the University’s Evanston campus.

Written for the stage by Northwestern University alumna Lillian Groag, the play was adapted from a book of interviews by Erica Fischer, author of “Aimee and Jaguar: A Love Story, Berlin 1943.”

The production will be staged at 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31; 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 1; 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 2; 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6; 8 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7; 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 8; and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 9. Post-show discussions will follow the Jan. 31, Feb. 2 and Feb. 6 performances. Playwright Lillian Groag will join the post-show discussions on Jan. 31 and Feb. 2, as part of her Evanston campus visit. 

Directed by Joseph Hanreddy, former Milwaukee Repertory Theater artistic director, the production examines the complex and often contradictory nature of love in the emotionally charged final days of the Third Reich. As war-torn Berlin crumbles underneath constant Allied bombing, a romance kindles between Lily Wust (“Aimee”), a mother of four with a husband away fighting for the Nazi cause, and Felice Schragenheim (“Jaguar”), a Jewish girl living on fake IDs and uncertain of her next meal.

“The play places the two women and their circle of friends between the Nazi’s mass transport of Jews to death camps and the fierce Allied bombing attacks,” says director Hanreddy. “The war serves as a crucible in which young women negotiate love, attachment and survival under horrific circumstances.”

Groag’s new play has received workshops at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. The Northwestern production, featuring a student cast, will be the first fully staged performance.

A 1999 film version of “Aimee & Jaguar,” co-written by Germany’s Max Farberbock and Rona Munro, was directed by Farberbock.

Tickets are $25 for the general public; $22 for seniors over 62 and Northwestern faculty and staff and educators; and $10 for full-time students with valid IDs (at the door) or $5 tickets exclusively for full-time Northwestern students on advance purchase. Discounts are available for groups of eight or more. 

Tickets may be purchased online at TIC, by phone at (847) 491-7282, or in person at the Ethel M. Barber Theater lobby at 30 Arts Circle Drive, Evanston campus. The box office is open from 10 a.m. through 5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and from noon through 4 p.m. Saturday.

CONSTRUCTION ALERT 

A three-year construction project underway on the southeast end of the Northwestern University campus has closed Arts Circle Drive to traffic. Free parking for evening and weekend events remains available, but the project impacts handicap parking and patrons requiring special access to Evanston campus theaters, as the parking structure is accessible only to patrons able to climb stairs. For the most current information on the construction project and drop-off locations for patrons requiring special access to our theaters, visit www.tic.northwestern.edu/construction.

Topics: Campus Life