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’LIFE’ SURVIVES

The Brooklyn Paper
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In 1939, the 22-year-old German-Jewish artist Charlotte Salomon fled Berlin for still unoccupied Vichy France only to be killed in a death camp four years later.

During her short life, however, Salomon created an impressive and rarely seen multimedia project, "Life? Or Theater?" which includes a series of more than 1300 drawings and texts meant to be accompanied by a soundtrack.

Manhattan-based experimental theater group Polybe + Seats is bringing Salomon’s "Life? Or Theater" to life in their new play, "The Charlotte Salomon Project," which plays in Williamsburg’s Brooklyn Fire Proof through Nov. 19.

The project is divided into three sections meant to capture main themes in Salomon’s work - childhood, romantic obsession and life after Berlin.

"We wanted to work on a project that explores the entire cycle of a woman artist’s life and experience, a person who did something monumental in a terrible and terrifying climate," says Polybe + Seats Artistic Director Jessica Brater.

The show preserves the multidimensional feel of Salomon’s work by combining a performance installation in a gallery space with actual performance.

Polybe + Seats presents "The Charlotte Salomon Project: Life? Or Theater?" at 8 pm, Wednesday through Sunday until Nov. 19 at Brooklyn Fire Proof, 101 Richardson St. at Leonard Street in Williamsburg. Tickets are $15. For tickets, visit www.smarttix.com. For more information, visit www.polybeandseats.org.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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