COLLEGE PARK, Ga. — An award-winning play that chronicles the infamous events surrounding a visit to a Nazi concentration camp is coming to College Park.

"Himmelweg" means "way to heaven" in German. It's also the name of an award-winning play written in 2004 by Spanish playwright, Juan Mayorga.

The unconventional play revolves around a visit to Theresienstadt, in which the entire camp was ‘decorated’ to appear as a harmless and peaceful village in order to dupe a group of delegates from the International Red Cross in 1944.

It also served as one of the most deliberate examples of overt propaganda perpetrated by the Third Reich.

The play is comprised of five sections that consist of monologues, tableaus and overlapping narratives that give the audience an almost "Rashomon"- style retelling with a "story-within-a-story" meta-structure. 

The construction of the play deftly transitions between settings as the audience is presented with a recount of events, told through the prism of three drastically different perspectives of the make-believe utopia: Jewish prisoners, their Nazi perpetrators, and one of the Red Cross commissioners.

The newly relocated Push Push Theater in College Park
The newly relocated Push Push Theater in College Park

Skillfully juggling themes of fascism, complacency, and jingoism, "Way to Heaven" offers a succinct indictment of the ‘banality of evil’ as told right before the audience’s very eyes. 

"Way to Heaven" debuted on Jan. 21 at the newly-relocated Push Push Theater in College Park to a packed house.

During the reception, the Consul General for the German Consulate, Dr. Heike Fuller spoke about the importance of works such as "Heaven."

“You don’t get firsthand stories about this part of history anymore,” Dr. Fuller said. “We will make sure that this stays in people’s memory. As we see, history can repeat itself.”

"Way to Heaven" is directed by Robin Bloodworth and features Bart Hansard and Theo Harness. The show will be performing at Push Push Theater on Jan. 24 and 25 at 8 pm. Tickets are $15.

For more information about the PushPush Film & Theater and their upcoming schedule of events, visit their website.

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