Breaking Amish (9 x 60′) – In a world where “plain” is considered a compliment, this series pulls back the curtains to reveal the strict traditions of the Amish/Mennonite religion and lifestyle as cameras follow five people who have chosen to leave it behind and explore the world outside of their community. It provides a never-before-seen look inside the lives of young men and women as they, for the first time, trade horse and buggy with taxi cabs to break out from their respective Amish/Mennonite communities in their pursuit to chase big dreams in the Big Apple.
From flying in a plane and wearing jeans to using a cell phone and electricity, the show will highlight the young people’s transition into city culture and the basic amenities that come with it. Unlike Rumspringa, these young men and women get serious about the possibility of committing to careers, life, and options for living indefinitely on the outside. But after these new experiences and the opportunity to live out dreams take flight, will they take advantage of New York and carry out their newfound lives while leaving behind the Amish/Mennonite community and their families forever?
The decision to pack up their bags and leave town does not come without a hefty price.
Jeremiah (32) was adopted by an Amish family and has a dream to drive for a living. Having experienced the frustration of drivers as they waited to pass horse and buggy, he wants to drive something that the Amish are not allowed to and feel the speed, convenience and thrill of driving that he has admired for so long. Jeremiah is leaving behind an Amish girlfriend to pursue his dreams.
Kate (21) is the bishop’s daughter and is very well known in the Amish community. She has dreams of moving to NYC to become a model. As a kid, she painted her finger nails with markers to pretend that it was nail polish. This love for fashion developed with age, but fashion magazines, makeup, jewelry and other “vanity items” have been banned by her father.
Abe (22) wants to marry an Amish girl. He feels like he may want to return to his Amish community, but he is tired of the day-to-day monotony and wants to experience a world outside of the traditions he knows so well. He also feels limited by his lack of education. His desire to see NYC and its skyscrapers and beaches stems from his mother, who also dreams to see these sites in person; however, once Abe decides to leave, his mother has a change of heart and demands that he return home.
Rebecca (20), like Kate, wants to model. The youngest in the cast, she is a realist who wants to explore NYC, but understands the consequences of not getting a job and being responsible. She longs to try new things – eat sushi, see a show, but most importantly – fall in love. Don’t let her innocent demeanor fool you – she is the only Amish girl who punched a male classmate in the face. Amish males do not fight – let alone girls.
Sabrina (25), the cast’s only Mennonite, was adopted. Coming from Italian and Puerto Rican descent, Sabrina struggles to find her cultural identity. To learn more about her heritage, Sabrina hopes to work in an Italian or Puerto Rican restaurant and eventually find her biological parents to learn about her past and how her bloodline has shaped her into the person she is today.
Producer: Hot Snakes Media
TX: 9th September 2012
Source: TLC press release