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The Boston Globe

Theater & art

Stage Review

Listening and learning at Lyric’s ‘The Chosen’

‘Silence.” Pause. “Silence.” Pause. “For a word to be spoken, there must be silence, both before and after.”

That’s the beginning of “The Chosen,” as spoken by the adult Reuven Malter (Charles Linshaw), in the warm-hearted production that’s up at the Lyric Stage Company. The 1999 play, adapted by Aaron Posner and Chaim Potok from Potok’s 1967 novel, looks back to the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn in the years 1944-48, when Jewish teenagers Reuven Malter (Zachary Eisenstat) and Danny Saunders (Luke Murtha) become close friends, even though Danny is Hasidic and Reuven is not. “The Chosen” is about overcoming differences and making choices, but it’s also about speech and silence, and learning to listen.

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