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Tears of the Onion play reading to be held Nov. 7

Banner image for the reading of the play Tears of the Onion at the JCC on Nov. 7.

The Sam Pomeranz Jewish Community Center will host a semi-staged reading of the play Tears of the Onion on Sunday, Nov. 7, 2021 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the center on 5655 Thompson Rd., DeWitt. Written and directed by local resident Robert Brophy, the play is based on true boxing stories from Central New York. It will feature CNY actors who are themselves former boxers or boxers' children.

Light refreshments and discussion to follow. The event is free and open to the public. Proof of COVID vaccination and mask wearing are required. Event registration is requested (for refreshments ordering) by calling 315-445-2360.

At the first selection of honorees into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota (1990), two champions with strong Central New York ties, both sharecroppers' sons, former opponents, remember and then debate the different paths that fate led them on, as a white immigrant's son and a native black American. Triumphs and defeats, honest dealing and defiance of the mob influence in boxing, lead them to recall the past (1960 US Senate hearings) and rejoice in past battles and present friendship.

The play will feature the following characters:

  • Carmen Basilio, CNY Welterweight and Middleweight World Champion
  • Isiah Ike Williams, inspired by his namesake prophet, World Lightweight Champion
  • Ada, widow of Norm Rothschild, honest CNY boxing promoter

The playwright is a member of the Dramatists Guild of America, whose plays have been seen in Central NY (Salt City Center for the Arts, SouthWest Community Center, Paul Robeson, Performing Arts Co., Studio 24, Redhouse readings) and from NYC to AZ and CA, MN to Atlanta GA & Itinerant Theatre Louisiana.

This project is made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and New York State Legislature and administered by CNY Arts.

For more information about the Tears of the Onion reading, contact the JCC at 315-445-2360 or