Friends of Hopewell Fur­nace host ‘Ruth’s Daugh­ters’

Northern Berks Patriot Item - - ENTERTAINMENT - From Edie Shean-Ham­mond

On Sun­day, Feb. 11, in time for Valen­tine’s Day, the Friends of Hopewell Fur­nace will host a pre­sen­ta­tion of “Ruth’s Daugh­ters,” a new work by play­wright Chris­tine Em­mert. Spon­sored by the Friends of Hopewell Fur­nace, the free pro­gram will be­gin at 2 p.m. in the Hopewell Fur­nace Con­fer­ence Room.

Em­mert whose play “From Out the Fiery Fur­nace” has cap­ti­vated au­di­ences in the Delaware River Val­ley for more than 10 years, of­fers this new work which prom­ises to take the au­di­ence on a dip into the rich mix of fe­male Jewish writ­ers. Every­one from the bib­li­cal Ruth to mod­ern scribes are com­ment­ing on their faith, their fears and joys in the pens of such as Anne Frank, Gertrude Stein, Nora Ephron and oth­ers. The piece, Ruth’s Daugh­ters, is a jour­ney of life through lit­er­a­ture.

Ac­tress, play­wright, and di­rec­tor Chris­tine Em­mert lives in Val­ley Forge. Her in­ter­est in women’s is­sues has in­flu­enced her artis­tic work. In ad­di­tion to her work on Hopewell Fur­nace, she has per­formed “Frag­ile Free­dom,” a work ded­i­cated to the strug­gles for women’s rights. She has sev­eral pieces out on Kin­dle in­clud­ing “Is­mene” and “Lilith,” stories of women who solve their crises and a full length novel, “The Nun’s Dragon.” She won the fi­nal­ist prize for plays about en­dan­gered species pre­sented by Jane Goodall In­sti­tute in 2016 for coau­thor­ing a piece called Arc­tic Af­ter­noon. Chris­tine has a mas­ter’s de­gree in hu­man­i­ties and taught for 10 years at col­leges in Colorado. Her plays have been per­formed through­out the English speak­ing world.

Dur­ing the 19th Cen­tury, women at Hopewell Fur­nace re­ceived equal pay for equal work. They held many of the same jobs as men. Bethesda Bap­tist Church that is still at Hopewell Fur­nace was orig­i­nally con­structed as a meet­ing house where all faiths were able to wor­ship.

Es­tab­lished in 1994, the Friends of Hopewell Fur­nace is the of­fi­cial non-profit fundrais­ing arm of Hopewell Fur­nace Na­tional His­toric Site. A 501(c)3 cit­i­zen or­ga­ni­za­tion, its mis­sion is to sup­port the preser­va­tion, main­te­nance and pro­grams of Hopewell Fur­nace Na­tional His­toric Site. Do­na­tions to the Friends may be tax de­ductible ac­cord­ing to the rules set by the In­ter­nal Rev­enue Ser­vice.

While at Hopewell Fur­nace Na­tional His­toric Site vis­i­tors are en­cour­aged to go into the vil­lage, tour the build­ings, see Hopewell’s wa­ter wheel and learn about iron mak­ing and why Hopewell Fur­nace is im­por­tant to our na­tion’s his­tory. Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Wed­nes­day thru Sun­day, the park is lo­cated five miles south of Birds­boro, PA, off Route 345. For more in­for­ma­tion visit www.friend­sofhopewell­furn.org.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Chris­tine Em­mert

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