Game of Thrones actress Laura Pradelska: 'My grandmother went through trauma after five years in Auschwitz'

The veteran stage actress opened up on the most recent episode of John Bishop's podcast


Game of Thrones actress Laura Pradelska has admitted her grandmother went through trauma after spending five years in Auschwitz.

The German Jewish actress opened up about her Auschwitz survivor grandmother and her experience growing up as a German Jewish woman in post-war Germany.

Speaking on John Bishop’s Three Little Words podcast, with co-host Tony Pitts, the German Jewish actress discussed the life and experiences of her paternal grandmother who, after surviving the horrors of Auschwitz for five years, subsequently opened a fish restaurant with money given to her by the post-war German government.

As per the theme of the podcast, Pradelska choose three words that meant the most to her. These were “blanket, refugee, and delicate.”

She told the podcast: “Refugee is a word that I really connect to hope and survival, and so often, in the media today, it is made as a dirty word, and it riles me up.

“It has a lot of beauty in it, and I really wanted to talk about that. I have a personal connection to it in the sense that I’m a grandchild of holocaust survivors.

“My paternal grandmother went through trauma because she had spent five years in Auschwitz. She couldn’t speak about it. The trauma was too deep.

“My grandparents decided to stay in Germany because they couldn’t go anywhere else. It really wasn’t an option.

“People always say, ‘Why did they stay?’. They came with nothing on them. My parents were born in displaced people camps. There was no luxury.”

Asked by Bishop whether, growing up as a Jew in post-Second World War Germany, she ever felt the country had a sense of national guilt, Pradelska responded: “There was definitely a sense of guilt, and I’ll proudly say that my grandmother accepted money from the government to stay in Germany as a payout because of the war crimes against her.

“I actually respect her for that. There wasn’t anywhere to go. She took that money and opened a fish restaurant. Does that mean she was living amongst essentially the very people who wanted her dead? Yeah, but she’s a survivor.”

Pradelska previously told BBC Radio 5 Live in 2019 that she had to disable comments on her Instagram page because of the antisemitic abuse she was subject to.

In an interview with Emma Barnett at the time, she said: “You would be amazed at some of the comments I get.” Particularly fierce abuse came, she said, whenever she tried to raise awareness of the Holocaust.

“It’s mostly to do with Israel and it’s completely uncalled for because I tend to post pretty pictures, or pictures of rehearsal or of work that I do,” she added.

"Yes, I do get abuse. Absolutely. It’s strange. It’s usually also from people that hide behind some sort of strange name.”

As well as her reoccurring role in Game of Thrones as the mysterious masked character “Quaithe”, the 35-year-old thespian is known for appearing in more than 20 theatre productions in London’s West End.

Three Little Words hosted by John Bishop and Tony Pitts is a weekly podcast where celebrity guests are invited to share what their three favourite words are and why.

Pradelska has previously collaborated and worked with the Holocaust Educational Trust in the past. In 2017, she has also appeared at the annual Yom HaShoah commemoration as a keynote speaker, where she recounted her grandmother’s heroic story of survival.

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