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Westside to open I Never Saw Another Butterfly

by: REVIEW PHOTOS: VERN UYETAKE - Jayne Ruppert as Raja Englanderova and Hannah Johnstone as Irena Synkova in Westside Christian High School's production, 'I Never Saw Another Butterfly,' opening Friday at Alpenrose Opera House.Westside Christian High School will present “I Never Saw Another Butterfly” at the Alpenrose Opera House, located at 6149 S.W. Shattuck Road, Nov. 2 through 11. Performances are planned for 7 p.m. on Nov. 2, 3, 9 and 10 and Nov. 4 and 11 at 2:30 p.m.

“I Never Saw Another Butterfly” is a play about the Holocaust based on the lives of the children of Terezin near Prague as documented in the book by the same name, written by Hana Volavkova. It is history, showing the best and worst of which the human heart is capable.

More than 15,000 Jewish children passed through the camp at Terezin, and only about a hundred were still alive when it was liberated by the Allies at the end of the war. These few went back to the scattered pieces of their lives, their homes and families. The main character, Raja, lived through it all, helping to give hope when there was little reason for hope.

With movement pieces by choreographer Lisa Allison and original music by James Pick, this is a powerful drama witnessing not only the horrors of Terezin, but also the hope and humanity of its inhabitants.

The cast includes Jayne Ruppert as Raja Englanderova, Hannah Johnstone as Irena Synkjova, Chris Lea as Papa and Sara Sherwood as Mother, Sarah Slater as Aunt Vera, Caden Reed as Pavel and Meleah Williamson as Irca.

Playing the roles of Erika, Renka and Honza are Olivia Hartford, Rachel Mumaw and Marcus Raz. Nathan Longacre plays the Rabbi, and Rachael Stefan, Lydia Heye, Amy Davis, Kimberly Vreugdenhil and Benjamin Walker take on the challenge of the many faces of Terezin.

Tickets are available through the Alpenrose box office one hour before each performance. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and $6 for students with student ID card.

Credit card tickets prices are 50 cents additional.