Remembering Anne Frank at the People’s History Museum

Today, an audience was taken back in time in the People’s History Museum’s event ‘Walking in their Shoes: Responding to Anne Frank.’ The event kicked off with an immersive monologue from an ex-MMU student who was playing the part of an elderly Jew who was held in a concentration camp, which gave the audience a clear context for the morning.

The monologue was performed in the People’s History Museum’s Mini Theatre, an incredibly intimate performance space which is designed to blur the line between audience and actors. The set for the performance, however, was minimal, the only backing being several banners which gave information about the life of Anne Frank and the opinion of children on MMU’s event, which was also based on Anne Frank, and took place in the Geoffrey Manton Atrium.

Marianne, who is part of the Anne Frank trust, then spoke briefly about the history of the concentration camps: “Very, very few people under the age of 16 survived, and very few people over forty. They were considered useless,” and then went on to speak about Anne Frank’s fate after her death. “Anne Frank is somewhere in Bergen-Belsen, but we don’t know where.”

Afterwards, the children were given the opportunity to take part in a workshop which encouraged them to develop their own opinions on human rights issues, and to relate the story of Anne Frank to modern times, and modern problems, such as forced marriage and forced child labour. The workshop was set up as a treasure trail, in which the children were given various key words and given the task to find the information in the various displays around the exhibition.

The events were repeated twice throughout the morning, and had a very good turnout. The event was largely supported by the students and staff at MMU, who ensured everything ran smoothly, and it was enjoyed by everyone involved.

FM

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