US play on WWII courier Karski comes to Warsaw
PR dla Zagranicy
An American play about Jan Karski, the Polish WWII courier who tried to inform the West about the Holocaust, will be performed in Warsaw this week.
American actor David Strathairn who plays Jan Karski, in Warsaw on Tuesday at the Teatr IMKA. Photo: PAP/Leszek Szymanski
Remember This: Walking with Jan Karski is being staged as both a side event of the opening of Warsaw's Museum of the History of Polish Jews, and the culmination of centennial celebrations marking the anniversary of his 1914 birth.
Karski is played by Academy Award nominee David Strathairn, who has said that playing the courier is “an unbelievable privilege and an honour.
“We need to keep his name alive by keeping his deeds alive in whatever way we can.”
As an emissary of the Polish Underground State, Karski was a link with the Polish government-in-exile, which was initially based in France, before it moved to London in 1940.
Dubbed “the man who tried to stop the Holocaust” by later historians, he brought eyewitness reports of the tragedy from Warsaw to the West.
“His calls for swift response, when confronted with the acts of discrimination, degradation and injustice that lead to political murder and genocide, are alive for us to learn from today,” director and playwright Derek Goldman has commented.
As a result of his wartime exploits, Karski (whose real name was Jan Kozielewski) was declared a 'righteous gentile' by Israel's Yad Vashem Institute, and he was given honorary Israeli citizenship. He worked as a professor at the University of Georgetown, Washington, for over 40 years, and died in 2000.
Remember This: Walking with Jan Karski is being staged at Warsaw's Teatr IMKA on 29 and 30 October. (nh)