Life & Culture

Divorce drama on Radio 4

A new radio play is set in Manchester's strictly Orthodox community


The plight of an Orthodox Jewish woman whose husband will not give her a divorce is at the centre of a play to be broadcast on Radio 4 on  April 20.

The Book of Yehudit is written by Adam Usden, a young Jewish writer from Manchester. It is his radio debut.

It is about a couple, Yehudit and Naftali, both ultra-Orthodox Jews brought up in a close-knit community in Manchester. They are about to go through the ceremony that will change their lives forever — their divorce. But at the last moment Naftali refuses to give Yehudit a get and she finds herself agunah. The community rallies round her, but as the weeks and months drag on, and Naftali shows no sign of relenting, her younger brother, Daniel, begins a campaign of intimidation against his brother-in-law, which soon escalates to Naftali’s kidnapping.

Producer Charlotte Riches said the play was “a story that treats all of its characters and the world in which they live with a deep warmth and affection, whilst also being aware of their foibles and limitations, The Book of Yehudit is a sensitive look at a young woman’s search for identity and independence, in a community that owes its survival to conformity and tradition.”

The cast includes Jewish actors Yasmin Paige (Submarine, Glue, Ballet Shoes) and David Fleeshman (Death of a Salesman, Glengarry Glen Ross).


The Book of Yehudit  will be on  BBC Radio 4 at 2:15 on Thursday 20th April. The drama will then be available on BBC Iplayer for 30 days.


Share via

Want more from the JC?

To continue reading, we just need a few details...

Want more from
the JC?

To continue reading, we just
need a few details...

Get the best news and views from across the Jewish world Get subscriber-only offers from our partners Subscribe to get access to our e-paper and archive