Nov 23 - DEC 16, 2012

Set in Vienna in 1938 and London during the Blitzkrieg, The Pianist of Willesden Lane tells the true story of noted pianist and author Mona Golabek’s mother, Lisa Jura. A young Jewish pianist, Lisa dreams of a concert debut at the storied Musikverein concert hall. When Lisa is swept up in the kindertransport, to protect her from the Nazi regime, everything about her life is upended except her love of music and her pursuit of that dream. Golabek performs some of the world’s most beloved piano music in this poignant tribute to her remarkable mother. Directed by Hershey Felder (who brought Leonard Bernstein and George Gershwin to life at ArtsEmerson last season), The Pianist of Willesden Lane is about hope, survival and how, through our darkest times, music has the power to help us survive.

"Elegant ... Heartfelt ... Enthralling" –Los Angeles Times

About Mona Golabek

American concert pianist Mona Golabek has appeared at the Hollywood Bowl, the Kennedy Center and Royal Festival Hall. She is a Grammy nominee and has received numerous awards. She has been the subject of several documentaries including Concerto for Mona with conductor Zubin Mehta. Ms. Golabek’s syndicated radio program, The Romantic Hours, combines music with poetry. Her recordings include Carnival of the Animals and Ravel’s Mother Goose Suite featuring Meryl Streep, both recorded with Ms. Golabek’s sister, Renee Golabek-Kaye. Both daughters were taught by their mother, Lisa Jura, who is the subject of Ms. Golabek’s acclaimed book, The Children of Willesden Lane. Ms. Golabek founded Hold On To Your Music, a foundation devoted to spreading the message of the power of music. With the help of the Milken Family Foundation and the Annenberg Foundation, she created educational resources which, with her book, have been adopted into school curricula across America.


  • Location: The Jackie Liebergott Black Box Theatre at the Paramount Center
  • ArtsEmerson and Hershey Felder present Mona Golabek in The Pianist of Willesden Lane
  • Adapted and Directed by Hershey Felder
  • Based on the book The Children of Willesden Lane by Mona Golabek and Lee Cohen
  • Brought to you by the creator and star of George Gershwin Alone and Maestro: Leonard Bernstein
  • Ages 12+
  • Running Time: 90 minutes with no intermission