Filmmaker to screen dance film at Hazleton about family’s Holocaust survival

Group of dancers on a stage during a performance

Penn State Hazleton will host a screening of “Sh’ma: A Story of Survival” on Thursday, April 18.

Credit: Suki John

HAZLETON, Pa. — Filmmaker and Texas Christian University Professor of Dance Suki John will visit Penn State Hazleton on Thursday, April 18, to present her film detailing the experiences of her family before, during and after the Holocaust. The free event will be held at 1:30 p.m. in room 115 of the Evelyn Graham Academic Building and is open to the public. Participants can also register in advance to watch a livestream on Zoom.  

A narrative dance film developed by John over the course of 30 years, “Sh’ma: A Story of Survival” is based primarily on the life of John’s mother. It follows her from a young age to her deportation to a concentration camp, her time as a refugee and her eventual life as a United States citizen, according to the film’s website.  

John, a professor of classical and contemporary dance at Texas Christian University’s College of Fine Arts, created the film as part of “The Sh’ma Project: Move Against Hate,” an initiative aimed at educating audiences about the Holocaust. 

The event is organized by Penn State Hazleton Professor of Sociology Michael Polgar, who previously collaborated with John on the open educational resource (OER) textbook, “The Holocaust: Remembrance, Respect, and Resilience.” 

For more information, contact the Penn State Hazleton Strategic Communications Office at 570-450-3180.