BATAVIA, NY - The Genesee Center for the Arts is proud to present the internationally acclaimed one-woman show, Lilia! A show based on the extraordinary life of Oscar-nominated actress Lilia Skala, written and performed by her granddaughter Libby Skala, at the Stuart Steiner Theatre on Friday, Sept. 16, 2011 at 7 pm.
Lilia Skala was Austria's first female architect, and went on to become a stage star in Max Reinhardt's theatre and all over the German speaking world. In 1939 when Hitler invaded her home country, she fled to America as a penniless political refugee, not speaking a word of English, and started life again as a humble zipper factory worker to support her family. She attended night school and within two years she was cast in a Broadway show. Her career on stage, in TV and film, continued for five decades, culminating with Oscar-nominated Hollywood fame in "Lilies of the Field", in 1963, acting alongside Sidney Poitier.
Tracing their intimate relationship over 20 years, in which Lilia served as mentor, teacher and role model, Libby plays both her indomitable grandmother and herself. It's a tale of two spirits so alike they often suffer the ironic personal conflict that comes with deep love. In this creative way, Libby relates the story of her Austrian grandmother's escape from war-torn Europe, and the shame she suffers in this "demotion" to refugee and factory worker, to the final, victorious stardom on the Silver Screen. She also humorously portrays a grand dame reaching into her own experience to aid her granddaughter pursue a career in film and on stage.
"As a teenager, when I began studying acting, my grandmother passionately worked with me on the different scenes and monologues I needed to perform for class," says Libby. "When she 'demonstrated' how to perform the ingénue roles, she transformed so completely that I believed she was 16 years old more than I'd ever believed anyone was 16. To this day, she is the greatest actress I've seen."
Playwright/Actress Libby Skala has performed Lilia! to sold-out houses across North America, in London, at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and in Berlin and Dresden, Germany. Her second play A Time to Dance, has toured North America and she appeared in the film "Birth" with Nicole Kidman. For more information visit www.LiliathePlay.com.
Tickets: $10 Adults, $8 Seniors (55+), $5 Students (18-) and GCC Faculty/Staff, $3 GCC students with valid ID. The Genesee Center for the Arts Box Office accepts cash, checks and now accepts credit card payments on pre-ordered reservations only. Ask about our $2 discount for GCC alumni with an alumni id. Ticket Information can be found at www.genesee.edu/campuslife/arts/tickets.cfm.
For general information, contact the Genesee Center for the Arts Box Office at 585-343-0055 x6814, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For door-to-door directions, sent via email, visit www.genesee.edu.
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