Magda Watts
World Famous Israeli Dollmaker
Host: Said & Dari
Aired: Saturday 1.10.09 - 2:30-3:30 PM EST

Listen to the archived program...

Magda Watts was deported from Hungary to Auschwitz at the age of 15, where she survived for seven months. She escaped Auschwitz through a selection by people from the Siemens Company who came to choose girls for slave labor in Nurenberg. Lonely and depressed, she turned to making dolls from scraps of rags. Very quickly her talents were noticed and she soon traded dolls for food for herself and her sisters. And today her magnificent dolls are in museums, galleries and private collections all over the world.

A wonderful film was made by Jennifer Resnick about Magda's life that is featured on PBS (Public Broadcasting) in USA, called the Liberation of the Spirit: The Journey of Magda Watts tracing her life back to the Nazi death camps in Poland where she was imprisoned during World War II.

Dafka -- In Spite Of, by Magda Watts, published by Arbor Books in November 2008, tells the heroic, autobiographical story of a young Hungarian girl who survives the terrors of Auschwitz to become a thriving artist.

Actor Tom Cruise says he read the book Dafka -- In Spite Of, as background for his role as head conspirator in a plot to assassinate German Nazi leader Adolph Hitler in his newly released film Valkyrie.

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