REVIEWS – Holocaust Storyteller – Chapter 1: The Hero of Our Story

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(Russell Kaback)

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POSTED 6/9/2021 – From the first minute in to Holocaust Storyteller, I was enthralled. Tapping along to the bouncy Hamilton-esque style intro to the musical, I found myself immediately engaged in the scene performer Russell Kaback was setting. Using multiple musical genres to inspire a beautiful and energetic score, Kaback successfully transports the audience into a pre-Holocaust era using lyrical visuals. Each song a part of the larger story, this one-person show done almost completely in song, is straight out fun. Presenting now Act One of a full-length show, Kaback sings and plays with liveliness that leaves audiences wanting for more. A show I would recommend for all ages and eventually as a teaching tool in schools, Holocaust Storyteller is something I look forward to seeing more from.

-Christina W. Richardson, PortFringe 2021 Independent Review Team

POSTED 6/10/2021 – There is no holocaust in Chapter One of HOLOCAUST STORYTELLER. In fact, this selection is so full of joy and life, that if we didn’t all know the shape of the story that will surely follow, I might have expected a cheerful coming of age tale. As the title suggests, we’re introduced to our hero here, but also to his family and home. It is a detailed and loving image of a thriving and supportive community seen through the eyes of a child concerned with who he will grow up to be.

Though the shot never changes, the piece is anything but boring. The simplicity of the filming places emphasis on Russell Kaback’s beautiful songwriting and performance. The transitions are smooth and the pace moves quickly, covering an impressive range of style in songwriting and performance.

Knowing little more than the title going in, I felt dread rising in me as the chapter progressed. The final lyrics left me in chills and wishing for the rest of this story.

-Mike, PortFringe 2021 Independent Review Team

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