Educators Introduction

Welcome to the McCarter Resource Guide Educator Edition for Yehuda Hyman’s The Mad 7, the Spotlight Production of our 2008 IN-Festival. This guide has been assembled to complement both your students’ theater-going experience as well as your class curriculum by offering a variety of interesting and engaging activities for both pre-show and post-performance instruction and enjoyment.

This production of The Mad 7 affords opportunities for enrichment in literature, history, theater, music, dance and media/visual arts. Students can embark upon an investigation into Jewish history, culture, and religious beliefs and practices; explore the geographical and ethnic diversity of the Jewish Diaspora; consider the prevalence of “The Quest” and “Riddle” plots in Western drama and literature; read and reflect upon the mystical symbolism and profundity of a two-hundred-year-old Hasidic tale; contemplate the challenges of solo performance; and ponder the personal relevance of themes involving one’s search for self, truth, meaning, the source of happiness, and the relevance of faith or spirituality in contemporary life.

Our student audiences are often our most engaging audiences at McCarter, and we encourage you and your students to join us for a discussion with playwright and performer Yehuda Hyman and director Mara Isaacs after the performance. Our visiting artists are always impressed with the preparation and thoughtfulness of McCarter’s young audiences, and the post-performance discussion offers a unique opportunity for students to engage intellectually with professional theater practitioners. We look forward to seeing all of you for a wonderful discussion about the magically entertaining and deeply profound The Mad 7.