GOD WAITS AT THE STATION
God Waits at the Station is a kaleidoscope of fragmented testimonies; one story bursts into another until a weave of broken realities and multiple truths unfolds; an infinite cycle of victimization in which the line between victim and victimizer becomes blurry.
The point of departure of God Waits at the Station is one of the most devastating terror attacks that were performed within Israeli territory by Palestinian terror organizations during the second Intifada (2000-2005). Terror attacks, and mainly suicide bombings, were the central expressions of that violent uprising. Israel responded to these attacks with "targeted killings" of terrorists, which then led to additional attacks, forming an endless cycle of revenge: attack-retaliation-attack. The second Intifada tore apart the Oslo Accords (1993) and led to an escalation which damaged the Israeli and Palestinian economies and took the lives of soldiers and civilians on both sides.
"She was pregnant", says the soldier who allowed the suicide bomber to pass through the checkpoint, thus enabling the death of thirty innocent people. "She was not pregnant", determines the Israeli security agent who was present during the autopsy. Did the taxi driver who drove her become part of a terror attack against his will, or was he a knowing and calculated accomplice? And how do we end the cycle of death if even a pregnant woman is a possible suspect? The characters try to put together the shrapnels of life and death, connecting one piece to the other, but the image that is formed keeps falling apart during the moment of the Boom.
GOD WAITS AT THE STATION was commissioned was commission by UTE – Union de Theatres de l’Europe (an EU initiative) under their TERRORism project. Outside of the project which took the play to all participating theatres, the play was produced in Germany and Austria and invited to RADIKAL Jung Festival in Munich.
"Maya Arad presents us with the anatomy of one tragedy of a female suicide bomber who steps into a restaurant and blows herself up together with thirty innocent people. Her story is told from various angles…a fascinating and moving mosaic of little human stories which create one big painful story…5 stars" (Shay Bar Yaacov, Yediot Akhronot)
"Maya Arad has written a play from the depth of her feelings and her embarrassment, in the place where we live. She did her job with humility, fairness and faith, using the leitmotif of a children's counting game "one, two, three, bang", when the "bang" is meant to replace a number that someone arbitrarily decides upon. During the performance, we advance towards the inevitable explosion – like many we've experienced during our lifetime and are far from seeing the end – an explosion in a Haifa restaurant which begins and ends the show…The story of the people who wanted to do good, did not want to be harmful more than is necessary, and found themselves involved in an inevitable explosion, imposed by reality, causing the death victims who randomly happened to be there." (Michael Handelzalts, Ha'aretz)
"…her greatest achievement as a playwright is placing in front of us a sharpened, not distorting nor complementing mirror…God Waits at the Station functions like a Greek tragedy with the unity of time and place and the use of a chorus next to dramatic characters and witnesses, and even the language which as much as it is contemporary it is built magnificently of poetry and fate. " (Zvi Goren, Habama)