TO THE ORCHARD by Les Hunter


In To The Orchard, college student Rachel Bergman reveals her sexual identity to her Orthodox Jewish father who has hidden his past own for years. An Orthodox rabbi, a queer studies professor, and the spirits of Robert Plant and Virginia Woolf inhabit this magical-realist play about family, making mistakes, retribution, and coming clean.



SIMCHA BERGMAN – 50’s. Surgeon. Baal teshuva Modern-Orthodox Jew. RACHEL’s father.

RACHEL BERGMAN – 19. SIMCHA’s daughter. Brooklyn College student. Aspiring writer.

TRACIE BRAGGS – Late 30’s. African American. Gender Studies professor at Brooklyn College.

RABBI ISIDORE – 70’s. Retired Orthodox Rabbi. Showing early signs of Alzheimer’s.

(VIRGINIA WOOLF )- Turn-of-the-century British author. Performed by the actor playing TRACIE.

(ROBERT PLANT) – Aged 1970s rocker. Phantasmagoric/illusionary. Performed by the actor playing ISIDORE.

(AUGUST BELMONT) -Prominent 19th Century New York businessman. Performed by the actor playing RACHEL.




Full production, Playwrights Local, Cleveland, OH. Dir. Dale Heinen. 2016.

Staged reading, National Comedy Theatre, National Foundation for Jewish Culture. NY, NY. Dir. Jamie Winnick. 2008.

Staged reading, Boston Playwrights’ Theatre. Boston, MA. Dir. Fran Weinberg. 2007.

Staged reading, ARTNY!, Brooklyn Playwrights’ Collective. Dir. Jamie Winnick. 2006.

Workshop reading, Building Bridges Festival, Brooklyn College Drama Dept. Dir. Jamie Winnick. 2006.

Top-Ten international Jewish Playwriting Contest finalist, Jewish Play Project, 2016.

Arch and Bruce Brown Foundation Grant, 2016.

National Foundation for Jewish Culture Grant, 2007.



Bob Abelman, “Engaging To the Orchard Pits Tradition Against Desire,” Cleveland Jewish News. May 30, 2016. “Hunter’s words seem to fly from the page and are as poetic as they are poignant.” Please read the full review here

Mark Horning, “Playwrights Local Brings Fascinating ‘To the Orchard’ as their Inaugural Work,” AXS. June 13, 2016. “An excellent balance of pathos and humor that makes for a delightful evening of solid entertainment.”



Approximately 2 hours



Preview available here

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