Cover photo by Patricia Brady

Korczak’s Children

Michael Brady

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The play chronicles the selfless acts of Janusz Korczak, the teacher and director. Korczak strove to give the children of the Warsaw Ghetto a sense of normalcy despite the horrific conditions and eventually chose to leave with them for the Treblinka death camp.

Production Info

Cast: 13 total (4 female, 9 male)
Full Length Drama (about 100 minutes)
Minimal Set Requirements
Period Costumes

Press Quotes

“KORCZAK’S CHILDREN draws its drama from the reality of the Warsaw Ghetto — honest, relentless and heartbreaking.” —Will Sonzski, Boston College Biweekly

“Within every great tragedy there are small tragedies. And because they are simpler to grasp, the numbers more manageable, small tragedies wring our souls more painfully than the large. KORCZAK’S CHILDREN is a wrenching story dramatically told.” —James Brady, Advertising Age

“KORCZAK’S CHILDREN focuses on Korczak’s efforts to save his orphanage and provide for its children, but Brady broadens the action to include a fuller discussion of the historical and cultural context in which Korczak lived and worked. The play begins with the orphanage children performing a little play about Poland’s King Casimir, who, despite counsel to the contrary, is determined to protect Poland’s Jewish population. Outside in the Warsaw street, a Polish mob is threatening them all with violence; inside, the children are starving. There is both charm and irony in this little playlet for, in 1942, there was no one to protect the Jews, and their condition was truly desperate. For the rest of the play, Korczak, with little success and diminishing hope, will attempt to extract from potential benefactors some assistance for the children in his care … It is Brady’s intention to present a tragic Korczak, founder of his own ‘Children’s Republic,’ doomed to death by his Nazi antagonists. He attempts no ‘message’ for us, but instead offers a perspective on the Holocaust that, because of its particular positive imagery, conveys a sense of renewal and possibility. This is especially true because the burden of the loss falls on the small shoulders of the children, all of whom perished, but whose lives are preserved in the continual retelling of Korczak’s story.” —Robb Erskine, Literature of the Holocaust

About the Author


  • Michael Brady

    Michael Brady's first play, SARA, was produced by Equity Library Theatre in 1980 at Lincoln Center. KORCZAK'S CHILDREN won the first Jesu Award in Playwriting and was produced by the Boston College Dramatics Society in 1982. TO GILLIAN ON HER 37TH BIRTHDAY was developed through the literary department of The Ensemble Studio Theatre and M Square Entertainment and moved to Circle-in-the-Square. GILLIAN was awarded the Oppenheimer Award for best play of 1983, and was produced as a film in 1996 by Sony Pictures. Other stage works include: TWO BEARS BLINKING, produced by New Theatre of Miami, SEMPER FI, produced by The Gloucester Stage Company, and HARD TIME, Main Street Stage, North Adams, Massachusetts. TO GILLIAN ON HER 37TH BIRTHDAY, KORCZAK'S CHILDREN, SEMPER FI, and TWO BEARS BLINKING are published by Broadway Play Publishing Inc. Michael's play TITLES was given a staged reading in July 2013 by the Berkshire Playwrights Lab in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. TITLES received another reading at Memberfest at The Ensemble Studio Theatre in November 2013. Both readings were directed by Giovanna Sardelli. Mr. Brady is a member of the Dramatists Guild and the Ensemble Studio Theatre. In addition to his writing, Michael served for several years as the Program Officer for Artists for the Massachusetts Cultural Council, overseeing a grant giving program for literary, visual, and performance artists. He lives in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts with his wife, Patricia Jacobsen-Brady.

About the Book

Book Information

Publisher BPPI
Publication Date 9/1/2002
Pages 156
ISBN 9780881452082

Special Notes

Special Notes

Licensees are required to include the original stage producers credits in the following form on the title page in all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play and in all advertising in which the full cast appears in size of type not less than ten percent (10%) of the size of the title of the Play:

Originally produced by Boston College University Theater

The following must appear within all programs distributed in connection with performances of the Play:
Korczak’s Children is produced
by special arrangement with Broadway Play Publishing Inc, NYC