Elise Thoron

Playwright: Merchant of Venice

Artist Headshot

Elise Thoron’s music theater pieces have been produced in the United States, Europe, Japan, Cuba: Green Violin, music by Frank London of the Grammy award winning Klezmatics, (Nine Contemporary Jewish Plays); Prozak and the Platypus, music by Jill Sobule (also CD/graphic novella); Charlotte: Life? Or Theater? based on paintings by Charlotte Salomon, music by Gary Fagin. Recycling: washi tales with distinguished Japanese paper artist Kyoko Ibe and traditional Japanese musicians. Her Afro-Cuban Yiddish opera Hatuey: Memory of Fire with composer Frank London had its North American premiere at Peak Performances (2018), after a first Spanish language production at Opera de la Calle in Havana (2017), and will next be seen in Miami. For over twenty years, Elise created cross-cultural exchanges with Russian and American theater artists; she adapted and directed The Great Gatsby in Russian at a The Pushkin Theater in Moscow, where it played for over nine years. As Associate Artistic Director at American Place Theatre, Elise developed and directed many new plays, and co-founded Literature to Life, a highly successful theater literacy program now in its third decade nationwide. For Lit to Life she has adapted Diaz’sThe Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, Baldwin’s If Beale Street Could Talk, Lowry’s The Giver, Cisneros’ The House on Mango Street, and developed County of Kings with Tony award winning spoken-word poet, Lemon Andersen, which went on to the Public Theater and venues around the world. Her translations of Russian plays are produced and published in the United States and Canada.