web analytics
September 22, 2014 / 27 Elul, 5774
At a Glance
Sections
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Lyndell Higgins: Dance In The Face Of Hate

Lyndell Higgins

Lyndell Higgins

In recent months I have been profoundly affected by the news of growing anti-Semitism in most European countries and in the United States, especially on college campuses. When, at the end of World War II, I emerged a living skeleton from the German concentration camps, I believed that the horror of Jew-hatred was defeated forever. And now, as I watch my grandchildren raise their young families, the news of the ancient hatred’s revival strikes fear in my heart for their safety. For the Jewish future.

The only ray of hope to brighten my soul radiates from the poignant letters I receive from readers of my Holocaust memoirs, who express their resolve to fight prejudice and hatred in any form.

Not long ago a letter reached me that stood out with the glow of its remarkable message. It came from Lyndell Higgins, founder and director of Stretch Dance Company in Los Angeles, California, who, in response to her concern over the rise of “hatred, racism and discrimination” proposes to create a unique method – a dance production based on my memoir – to teach about the Holocaust. Why teach about the Holocaust? Ms Higgins, in a brilliant historical insight, came to the conclusion that the Holocaust was nothing but the culmination of irrational hatred. She explains: “One of the most effective ways to teach people about the consequences of hatred is to teach them about the Holocaust.”

“As it is a dance production and will not be using dialogue,” Ms Higgins continues, “this performance can be attended by anyone with any level of education, speaking any language, therefore it could reach so many…The Stretch Dance Company, a new professional dance performance company, will travel to different universities throughout the United States and abroad …”

“A performance for the community at large will also be available,” she adds. “In addition, Stretch Dance Company will be offering workshops focused on Holocaust education, dance performance and theatrical design. Your memoir has the overall message of hope. Hope for humanity and future generations. …I share in that hope and wish to offer it to others,” Lyndell Higgins’ message concludes.

Who is this remarkable young woman with her amazing message of commitment?

What motivates a young beautiful dancer to fight “hatred, racism and discrimination” and with her unique, extraordinary sensitivity to create such unusual method to achieve her goal? What predisposes a California student to focus on the study of the horrors of the Holocaust and search among thousands of Holocaust memoirs for the one she feels the most appropriate for telling the story to students? In her words, “In order to achieve its educational purpose, the choreography for the present production is a combination of ballet, jazz, and modern method acting technique to create a realistic portrayal of emotions…for the students to feel empathy,” she elucidates. “One of the best tools to inspire change is empathy.”

Lyndell Walsh was born in southern California, and has been a professional choreographer since 2003. She received her education in drama and dance, and has teaching credentials in English literature and psychology from the University of California, Irvine. It was here she met her future husband, Christopher Higgins, an engineering student. The two were married in 2007 and made their home in Placentia, near Los Angeles. After completing their graduate degrees, Christopher’s is in engineering, Lyndell worked as high school teacher in the various fields of her expertise.

While all over the United States college students and teachers increasingly revive the ancient Jew-hatred in the form of anti-Israel propaganda, Lyndell Walsh Higgins is dedicated to reversing the trend. While I read about plans for a vicious BDS (Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions against Israel) event organized at Brooklyn College, my alma mater, my pain is soothed as I review Lyndell Higgins’s proposed program of disarming the haters by teaching about the consequences of hatred. May she serve as a shining role model for many others of her generation to ensure the future of the generations to come. May the Almighty bless Lyndell Walsh Higgins as she dances in the face of hate.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

3 Responses to “Lyndell Higgins: Dance In The Face Of Hate”

  1. Leah Swetsky says:

    My beautiful best friend. So deserved!

  2. Wonderful article about a very talented and beautiful young lady

  3. ktuck says:

    Lyndell Higgins is awe-inspiring! And thank you, Ms. Bitton-Jackson, for writing such a moving memoir of your experience during the Holocaust. I read your book when I was ten and it made such a profound impact on how I saw the world and made me grateful for the life I had. I cannot wait to see Lyndell’s show! She has such a keen understanding of how to interpret literature into dance. What a great article!

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
A Muslim social media campaign against ISIS was begun by the British Active Change Foundation.
Muslims Tell ISIS: #NotInMyName [video]
Latest Sections Stories
Calmer Times. Breslov chassidim on erev Rosh Hashanah in 2012 at the grave of Rav Nachman in Uman.

As optimistic as Menachem Rosenberg is – and he said he is going to Uman – he’s sure that this year, most of the travelers will not tour other religious sites or places in Ukraine.

Three sets of three-day Yomim Tovim can seem overwhelming – especially when we are trying to stay healthy.

Plotkin-092614

Is a missed opportunity to do a mitzvah considered a sin?

Teens-Twenties-logo

The sounds and scents of the kitchen are cozy, familiar, but loud in the silence.

Everyone has a weakness. For some people it is the inability to walk past a sales rack without dropping a few hundred dollars. For others, it’s the inability to keep their house organized.

Not enjoying saying no, I often succumbed to requests viewing them as demands I couldn’t refuse.

His entire life was dedicated to Torah and he became a pivotal figure in the transmittal of the Oral Torah to the next generation.

When you don’t have anyone else to turn to… that’s when you’re tied to Hashem the closest.

While we all go to restaurants for a good meal, it is dessert, that final taste that lingers in your mouth, that is the crown jewel of any dining experience and Six Thirteen’s offerings did not disappoint.

Today, fifty years and six million (!) people later, Israel is truly a different world.

There will always be items that don’t freeze well – salads and some rice- or potato-based dishes – so you need to leave time to prepare or cook them closer to Yom Tov and ensure there is enough room in the refrigerator to store them.

In Uzbekistan, in the early twentieth century, it was the women who wore the pants.

This is an important one in raising a mentsch (and maybe even in marrying off a mentsch! listening skills are on the top of the list when I do shidduch coaching).

More Articles from Prof. Livia Bitton-Jackson
LBJ-032814-Halberstam

Over the years there has been no shortage of reporting about Devorah Halberstam, Ari’s mother. Even in Israel, thousands of miles from the Halberstam home, there have been frequent references in the media to Ari’s mother. Do you know why?

When Hitler entered Prague in March 1939, many Czech Jews managed to escape to Palestine, including Alice’s twin Mariane and her families.

Hannah believed that one must learn about the evils of the past so that they aren’t repeated.

Who is Rachel Azaria? Would you have guessed that this dynamo is a religious, 35-year-old woman, mother of four children, ranging in ages from ten years to eight months?

The relatively young Eitam battalion has become instrumental in IDF Southern Command’s Division 80’s efforts to keep up with the ever-changing security situation in Sinai after the fall of the Mubarak regime – and the entry of terrorist elements to the region.

Eishet Chayil is a hymn customarily recited on Friday evenings before sitting down to the Shabbat evening meal. It is a twenty-two verse poem at the conclusion of the book of Mishlei, describing the woman of valor as the ideal wife and mother.

The Nazi officers and their wives were flattered to have the beautiful, poised Arab aristocrat at their parties.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/jewess-press/impact-women-history/lyndell-higgins-dance-in-the-face-of-hate/2013/02/22/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: