This week, when the curtains slowly closed on “The Nanny,” a production put on by the girls of the Yeshiva of Greater Washington (YGW) in Silver Spring, Maryland, they heralded not only the finale of a play, but also the zenith of an experience. The performance, known simply as “Production” in the school’s parlance, was held on Feb. 11 and 12 at Berman Hebrew Academy’s auditorium in Rockville, Maryland.
Every year, the YGW Girls Division puts on Production — fusing acting, singing, and dancing into a masterpiece for the community’s women to enjoy. Production is the culmination of months of preparation by both middle and high schoolers. Hours upon hours are spent rehearsing scenes, practicing dance moves, learning songs, painting scenery, and planning the myriad aspects of the show. But all the preparations are more than apparent when the girls step onto the stage under the spotlight.
Yet, besides being an opportunity to showcase talent, Production is a springboard for growth. Mrs. Sara Malka Winter, faculty advisor, explained the mission of Production: “In Yeshiva of Greater Washington, we don’t consider our school Production to be truly extracurricular. Rather, it brings to life lessons, in a far more powerful way than can ever be conveyed in the classroom. Lessons about leadership, generosity, kindness, patience, and collaboration. Our girls learn so much about their own strengths and those of their friends, and gain so much from investing so much time and effort in something bigger than themselves.”
This year, the play, adapted from Rabbanit G. Silber’s novel “Dovid Meyer,” and incorporating aspects of “Mary Poppins,” tells the story of a young boy named Dovid Kaplan, who is on a quest to earn money for his family due to his crippled father’s inability to work. He lands a job as a nanny for the Smiths, a wealthy British family. Yet, he gains more than he bargains for, and in the process, brings the Smiths back to their Jewish roots through his charm and good-heartedness. The performance drew in hundreds of women from the Greater Washington area. Its messages of gratitude to Hashem and of a single person’s impact reverberated throughout the performances.
“Being a part of this experience for my last year of high school was incredible,” shared Mali Abedon, a 12th-grader who played Charles Smith, the father of the British family Dovid works for. “I’m so lucky I got to be a part of it.”
While the curtains of Production may have closed for the year, the memories created and the lessons absorbed are there to stay.
By Shira Komarow
Shira Komarow is a junior at Yeshiva of Greater Washington and was drama director of this year’s Production.