Walking Toward America
"Walking Toward America," produced by Worcester-based theatre company Heart Forward and performed by one woman and one musician, tells an intensely personal narrative, laced with warmth, humor, courage, and determination. The play explores all that it means to be an ordinary family caught up in extraordinary circumstances. The central character, Ilga Katais, is portrayed at 4, 10, almost 17, and as a grandmother in order to reveal the remarkable story of her family’s flight from their Latvian homeland due to the Russian occupation of their city. They survive a month in a forced-labor camp, escape airstrikes as they walk over 500 miles across war-torn Germany, live for over six years in a United Nations Refugee camp, and eventually sail through an Atlantic storm to America. The action includes a host of characters: family members, soldiers, strangers, and friends. ased on the memoirs of Ilga Katais-Paeglis Vise and her family, eventual American refugees who left Latvia in 1944. It is roughly an hour and 15 minutes long and performed with live music. The play is produced by Worcester State University drama teachers and their newly founded non-profit theatre company, Heart Forward.
The performance may serve to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the beginning of World War II and it may also be a timely reminder of the history of immigration to the USA.
Refreshments will be served after the show.