Anne Frank’s Cousin Attends “Wiesenthal”


Monica Smith-Brody and Tom Dugan

Monica Smith and Tom Dugan


Nicole Smith-Brody, Sophie Smith-Brody, Monica Smith-Brody and Tom Dugan

Nicole Smith-Brody, Sophie Smith-Brody, Monica Smith and Tom Dugan





On Sunday, December 14, Wiesenthal, the new play about Simon Wiesenthal currently playing at the Acorn Theatre at Theatre Row, welcomed a very special guest: Monica Smith, second cousin to Anne Frank. Now 91 years old and residing in Manhattan, Smith escaped Amsterdam shortly before the Germans arrived. Attending Sunday’s matinee with her daughter Nicole Smith-Brody and granddaughter Sophie Smith-Brody, Smith participated in a special post-show discussion, “The Anne Frank Connection,” about Anne Frank and the legacy of humanity and hope that Frank continues to inspire when teaching the history of the Holocaust to young people around the world.

One of the most gripping scenes in Wiesenthal recounts the hero’s capture of Karl Silberbauer, the Gestapo officer who arrested Anne Frank, the fourteen year-old German-Jewish girl who was murdered by the Nazis after hiding in an Amsterdam attic for two years. Propagandists were fairly successful in their attempts to discredit the authenticity of Anne Frank’s famous diary until Wiesenthal located Silberbauer, then a police inspector in Austria, in 1963.

After the show, Smith thanked Tom Dugan, the playwright and star of Wiesenthal, saying, “Simon Wiesenthal, Anne Frank …these are such important stories to pass along to our children. I am so happy that I could share the experience with my daughter and granddaughter.”