More than 600 children came out for a pre-Chanukah production put on by the Beit Jabad del Uruguay in Montevideo.

Called "Candles on Strike," the professionally-produced show at the city's Metro Theatre told the story of two children who travel back in time through the use of a flying dreidel after their Chanukah candles accuse them of not understanding the holiday and refuse to light.

Each member of the audience received kosher popcorn and a newsletter published by Jewish Kids in Action, the children's outreach program run by Chabad-Lubavitch of Uruguay that makes visits to schools every month. In addition, they each received a menorah and candles.

All of the city's Jewish schools sent classes to the show.

"Each of you children is now like a lit candle," Rabbi Eliezer Shemtov, co-director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Uruguay, told the audience. "You now have the responsibility to light the other candles, the Jewish kids you know, with the light of your soul that was kindled here today."

"We take Judaism out of the books and put it into their hands," said Rochel Shemtov, the event's coordinator and fellow co-director of Chabad-Lubavitch of Uruguay.

Children proudly hold their new Chanukah menorahs and a Jewish kids magazine.
Children proudly hold their new Chanukah menorahs and a Jewish kids magazine.
In a review of the performance, which is being sold throughout the holiday at a stand in the Montevideo Shopping Center, Semanario Hebreo writer Isac Gliksberg praised the production.

"It was beautiful to see how happy and exited the children were as they entered the hall, accompanied by their respective teachers and principals," wrote Gliksberg for the weekly Jewish newspaper. "I enjoyed the show immensely; it brought me back to those wonderful years as a child."

"People stop me in the streets," related Rochel Shemtov, "and tell me that their children are lighting the menorah this year for the first time."

Six-year-old Deborah Bergstein liked the special-effects: "The best part was when the jug of oil seemed to be flying," she said. "It was very cool!"