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In the wake of destruction, one man rescues people and saves lives. Another rescues books and saves a culture. Joshua Sobol’s Ghetto is based on the true story of a theater company that sprang from the embers of a civilization and burned with a brief but fierce intensity, giving warmth and light to its Jewish inhabitants before it was extinguished in the Nazi terror. Part cabaret, part musical, chillingly dramatic with a Brechtian theatricality, Ghetto questions the morality of survival and what place art has in a holocaust. Directed by the Israeli-born Sobol, with costumes and set designed by his wife Edna Sobol, this Washington premiere is an almost-three-hour, 46-actor epic, in an all-too-brief run on the campus of Catholic University. Thursday-Saturday at 8 p.m.; matinee Saturday at 2 p.m. at Catholic University’s Hartke Theater, 3801 Harewood Rd. NE. $10. (202) 319-5367. (Jon Tindle)