The Gathering

by  Arje Shaw

Full Length Play, Drama  /  3m, 1f, 1boy(s)

Set in 1985, The Gathering explores the conflicts between grandfather, father and son which arise over the dinner table when they discuss President Ronald Reagan's planned visit to Bitberg, site of burial grounds for Nazi soldiers...

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The Gathering

by  Arje Shaw

License Estimator

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  • Cast Size

    Cast Size

    3m, 1f, 1boy(s)
  • Duration


    120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre


  • Accolades


    From Broadway
  • Audience

    Target Audience

    • Adult
    • Senior
    • Teen (Age 14 - 18)

Additional Info

Arje Shaw blends history and family politics in his Broadway dramedy, set in 1985. The Gathering explores the conflicts between grandfather, father, and son which arise over the dinner table when they discuss President Ronald Reagan's planned visit to Bitberg, site of burial grounds for Nazi soldiers. The stakes are high in the discussion because the grandfather (Hal Linden) is a Holocaust survivor and his son is a speechwriter for Reagan. Caught between them is the young lad, who is preparing for his bar mitvah. With a multi-generational cast, The Gathering asks poignant questions about understanding and forgivness in the face of tragedy.
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"'The Gathering' an affecting sermon. The issue is forgiveness, the lesson is that the endless harboring of anger and resentment -- even over the egregious cruelties of the Holocaust -- is a soul-warping endeavor, and the message is that, for their own good as well as the world's, it is time for Jewish survivors to let go of their vengefulness and allow the healing to a playwright, Mr. Shaw makes a pretty good rabbi." - New York Times

"Though many in the audience will see themselves and their family in this play, and there are a number of laughs showing how all families at times function in similar ways,...The Gathering can be a difficult and uncomfortable theatrical experience. But, it can also be a rewarding one." - Talkin' Broadway 

"[The Gathering has a] good conflict, with intellectual and emotional elements that are worth exploring. So, let the drama play out." - TheatreMania


Performing Groups

  • College Theatre / Student
  • Community Theatre
  • Dinner Theatre
  • Senior Theatre
  • Large Stage
  • Blackbox / Second Stage /Fringe Groups


  • Caution Mild Adult Mild Adult Themes

License details

  • Minimum Fee: £55 per performance plus VAT when applicable.



  • Time Period: 1980s
  • Duration: 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Setting: A New York City apartment in 1985, and the German cemetery, Bitberg. 
  • Features / Contains: Period Costumes


3m, 1f, 1boy(s)
GABE (ZAYDEE) - Michael’s Grandfather  
STUART - Michael’s Father
DIANE - Michael’s Mother
EGON - Young German Security Guard
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Cast Attributes

  • Parts for Senior Actors




Arje Shaw

Arje Shaw is a playwright and author, produced on and off Broadway. He's best known for The Gathering, 2001, which played at the Cort Theatre with Hal Linden and Playhouse 91, 1999, with Theodore Bikel and Jesse Eisenberg. Mag ...

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The Gathering premiered on Broadway at The Court Theatre in 2001, under the direction of Rebecca Taylor. 

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