The Diary of Anne Frank


"In spite of everything, I still believe that people are good at heart."

Apr 3 – Apr 27, 2014

Written by Goodrich & Hackett

Directed by Abdelfattah Abusrour

Anyone who has ever read The Diary of Anne Frank remembers that heartstopping moment when you turned the last page … and realized there was nothing else there.  Shortly after its publication, a stage adaptation was created by Albert Hackett and Frances and Frances Goodrich.  That play has been performed countless times around the world.  One of the most monumental works of art ever created comes alive in a breathtaking new staging.


The Diary of Anne Frank is one of the most important literary works of the 20th century.  The stage adaptation, no less so.  It is said that when the play was first performed in Germany, only a few years after World War II’s conclusion, that, when it was over, the audiences sat quietly for several minutes and then got up and left without making a sound.  Sometimes, it’s possible to occur a tribute greater than applause.  That moment must surely have been one such occasion.  When I first read the book, I had a similar reaction.  The book takes you into the mind and the life of a young girl.  You get to know her, laugh with her, cry with her, be mystified by the joys and incongruities of life, and then, you turn the page … and the page is blank.  That moment hit very hard for me as I know it has done for millions of people around the world. 

A couple of years ago, I invited a young woman to direct Man of La Mancha.  She had grown up in Bosnia, in the middle of that terrible war in the early 1990s. She had never read Don Quixote, never seen Man of La Mancha, didn’t know the story at all.  She had never even heard The Impossible Dream!  She turned out to be the best director we could have asked for – her approach to the material was fresh, unencumbered by the weight of history.  It became, from where I was sitting, a new play, with very clear and simple ideas.  That is my hope with Abdelfattah, as well.  He comes from a rich and active theatre world, but one far removed from ours.   I want him to direct the play the same way those first audiences experienced it in Germany.  If we can get at that, then we’ll have something new to add to the sum total.

Wheel Chair/Mobility Accessibility Notice –

For the first three weeks of the production, we will be staging the play in a space meant to recreate an attic, so the audience will reach the space by stairs.

Fully accessible shows will be held on Friday and Saturday, April 25 & 26 at 7:30 pm and at 2 pm on Saturday, April 26th and Sunday, April 27th, 2014 in our regular performance space which is fully compliant with ADA standards for wheelchairs and other mobility challenges.

Burning Coal welcomes people of all abilities and works to make our performances and venue accessible, if you have any questions please call 919.834.4001.

Our audio described performance of The Diary of Anne Frank will be Saturday, April 26th at 2 pm. (NOTE CHANGE)


Press and Reviews:

“A New Take On The Diary Of Anne Frank” Interview with the cast by Frank Stasio for WUNC


“‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ Has All the Tension, Heartache, and Joy Your Heart Can Take” by Martha Keravuori and Chuck Galle for Triangle Arts and Entertainment 



Estimated run time: 2 hours.

Watch the Anne Frank Trailer