Closing Discussion via Zoom: Isra-Drama guests in conversation with Shimrit Ron, Director of The Hanoch Levin Institute of Israeli Drama.
The session offers a global take on some of humanity’s burning issues – from the loneliness epidemic in modern society and the breakdown of the traditional family structure, to the crisis of democracy, geopolitical wars, climate change, and AI technology. All of which compels us to wonder: Where is humanity heading?
Shifra Kornfeld, author, screenwriter, columnist, radio broadcaster, and television host.
Duration: 40 min
Tamar Keenan is a theatre director, playwright, translator, dramatist, and winner of the Yosef Millo Award for Outstanding Director, 2022. Since 2016, she has directed over a dozen plays in Israel’s leading theatres. Tamar also serves as the artistic director of Tzavta Theatre in Tel Aviv, and co-artistic director of the theatre’s celebrated One Act Play Festival.
Director of What Happened to The World, a Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv production.
Dr. Carmel Weissman is a researcher and lecturer on digital culture in the multidisciplinary program and the Cohen Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Ideas at Tel Aviv University. Her areas of interest are a critical reading of the discourse on technological futurism, and examination of the religious aspects of technology. She owns the podcast “The Post-Human Condition”.
Ilan Ronen was the artistic director of Habima National Theatre from 2004 to 2016, after running two other theatres – The Jerusalem Khan Theatre and The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv. In the past decade, Ilan has paid considerable attention to the expansion of Habima’s international activity.
Director of (R)Evolution, a Gesher Theatre production.
Zvi Sahar is a director, actor, and puppeteer. Sahar established PuppetCinema in 2009, presenting Planet Egg at Puppet Lab at St. Ann’s Warehouse, NYC.
His works have participated in numerous international festivals, including BAM Next Wave Festival, Hong Kong Arts Festival, Taiwan International Festival of Arts and more. Sahar was named Artistic Director of Itim Ensemble, established by director Rina Yerushalmi.
Director of Step, performed by Itim Ensemble.
Guy Gutman is an artist and director. His works have been featured in many international and Israeli festivals. He is the director of Miklat 209, and former head of the School of Visual Theatre.
Co-creator and director of Because the Night, performed by Ensemble 209.
Binyamin Yom Tov is a multifaceted actor and creator from Tel Aviv, known for his award-winning performance in the show Tavas. Binyamin’s artistic exploration is often themed around identity, stereotypes, archetypes, and blurring the lines between autobiography and fantasy.
Creator and performer of Narkis.
Nataly Zukerman is an independent performance artist, dramaturg, artistic director, and lecturer. She has created and participated in numerous theatre, dance, and performance works, globally, spanning her twenty-year career. Nataly’s work deals with notions of body, identity and disability, as she creates autobiographical and interdisciplinary works.
Co-creator and co-director of Blueberry.
Tomer Koppel is a professional actor who has appeared in television and numerous theatre productions. Since 2020, Tomer has been working as a guide for healthy sexuality and sex education for teens in schools.
Co-creator and co-director of Blueberry.
Opening session addressing the current situation in Israel, reflecting on the role of theatre in these uncertain times.
Noam Semel, Chairman of The Hanoch Levin Institute of Israeli Drama
Hadar Galron, Israeli playwright, screenwriter, director, and actress. Her plays have appeared on esteemed stages both in Israel and worldwide.
Duration: 75 min
Moshe Kepten is one of the most renowned directors in Israel, currently the artistic director of Habima National Theatre. For three consecutive years, he was the artistic director of the Israel Festival in Jerusalem, an interdisciplinary celebration of art from around the world.
Director of The Labour of Life, performed by Habima National Theatre.
Michal Rovner is a renowned painter, photographer, video artist, and writer who exhibits a varied and evocative body of work. Rovner offers a seamless blend of photography, video, digital art, and painting, in order to express the intensity of her personal experience while applying appropriate symbolism to reflect the broader human condition.
Shirili Deshe has been acting, directing, and writing for the stage and television for the past twenty years. She is a graduate of the Jacques Lecoq Physical Theatre School in Paris.
Co-writer and co-director of A View of the Sea, a Jerusalem Khan Theatre production.
Ariel N. Wolf is a theatre director, movement director, teacher, and actor. In recent years, he has been creating works with his ensemble of performers, an independent group of actors and dancers. Wolf works as a director, choreographer, and dramaturg in different theatres, dance ensembles, and films.
Director of The Lake.
Yigal Azrati is a director, playwright, and the artistic director of Jaffa Theatre, which has been operating since its inception as a home for the joint creation of Arabs and Jews.
Officer Az-Oolay is a clown policewoman who has served on more than 260 shifts during demonstrations around Israel. In 2023, following the war, she initiated a walk from Jerusalem to Gaza.
Yadin Goldman is a theatre and television actor, currently performing in The Death Imprint as part of this year’s program. Yadin was wounded while serving in the IDF’s elite Sayeret Matkal special forces unit.
The session will invite this year’s leading IsraDrama artists (some of whom have made a name for themselves abroad as well) to discuss their latest work, stretching the boundary between the personal and the social.
Lucy Aharish, acclaimed news anchor, reporter, television host, and actress.
Duration: 40 min
Atay Citron is a director, and an emeritus professor of theatre and former chair of the Theatre Department at the University of Haifa, where he founded the pioneering academic training program for medical clowns in 2006. His research interests include shamanism, ritual clowning, medical clowning, and the history of avant-garde performance.
Co-creator and director of Third Person, preformerd by Ebisu Sign Language Theatre.
Ronnie Brodetzky is a director and writer. She is a recipient of the 2020 Rosenblum Performing Arts Award. Her unique works have been performed in leading theatres in Israel, including The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, Haifa Theatre, and Beer Sheva Theatre.
Director of Short Circuit, a Beer Sheva Theatre production.
Yair Sherman is an award-winning theatre director and one of the most promising fresh voices in Israeli theatre today. His works have been presented in numerous theatres in Israel and abroad. Sherman teaches at three of Israel’s leading theatre academies.
Director of Hamlet, a Beit Lessin Theatre in Honor of Baruch Ivcher production.
Anat Dreamer is a multidisciplinary performer, writer, director, spoken word artist, workshop facilitator, and creative consultant.
Co-creator and performer of A Good Place Everything Is Bad, an Incubator Theatre production.
Nurit Dreamer is a director, creator, and performer. She received an award for excellence from the Jerusalem Foundation in 2016 and 2018.
Co-creator and performer of A Good Place Everything Is Bad, an Incubator Theatre production.
Hana Vazana-Grunwald is a director, playwright, and theatre group facilitator. She is a recipient of the Rosenblum Prize for Performing Arts (2022), and the Minister of Culture Award (2023). She is the founder and artistic director of Frechot Ensemble. Her work promotes a theatrical language emphasizing multiculturalism and oriental femininity. Her shows are performed in Israel and abroad.
Director and dramaturg of A Consensual Homicide.
Meirav Gruber is a versatile playwright and actress. She has played many roles in film, television, and theatre, among others in the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, Habima National Theatre, and Beit Lessin Theatre. She ventured into playwriting with her autobiographical play The Death Imprint.
Playwright of The Death Imprint.
Achinoam Mendelson is a multidisciplinary artist, theatre director, musician, and performer. She creates performance and theatre shows, video art, and also works as a performer, violinist, and dramaturg for several independent Israeli artists. Her works have been shown at Hanut 31 Theatre & Gallery, The Israel Museum, Hazira Performance Art Arena, Habait Theatre, and others.
Creator of I Love You Special.
Six friends arrange to meet for a restful weekend on the lake. Throughout the play, which lasts for a day, the group spends its time pleasantly. They talk, eat, argue, play, and even try to match two of them who are not yet in a relationship. Seemingly nothing happens, but the “idyllic” lake scenes are interrupted and split by flashback scenes of the characters’ lives outside of that weekend; scenes that reveal the pain and violence in their private lives. The world presented is much less than perfect.
Written in 2014, The Lake describes the state of a society that creates a comfort and artificial reality for itself, in which it can hide from disturbing changes.
“Where are you right now? Where would you like to be at the moment the world ends?”
Mikhail Durnenkov is a Russian playwright, screenwriter, and teacher, currently living in Helsinki. Durnenkov fled Russia to Finland shortly after Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine on 24 February 2022. Durnenkov’s opposition to Russia’s war against Ukraine had severe personal consequences. Theatres in Russia stopped showing his plays, and there were calls to prosecute him for his anti-war stance.
Ariel N. Wolf is a theater director, movement director, teacher, and actor. In recent years, he has been creating works with his ensemble of performers, an independent group of actors and dancers. Wolf works as a director, choreographer, and dramaturg in different theatres, dance ensembles, and films.
A Consensual Homicide, which received an honorable mention in The Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre, 2021, deals with the issue of violence against women that culminates in murder.
The story is based on a poem by Iris Elia Cohen, written following the murder of the late Esti Aharonovitz, and biographical materials written by Tehila Azulay-Shaul, inspired by meetings with women at the Center for the Prevention of Domestic Violence.
A Consensual Homicide touches on the mechanism of murder from different points of view: Can murder by consent even exist? Who agrees to such a murder, who cooperates? It raises questions, and confronts us with the place each one of us has within this social reality.
Four actresses cry out not only for the loss of women’s lives, but mainly for the reality of our lives that allows violence, which is becoming more and more normalized.
The texts remind us that gender violence crosses boundaries of identity, and threatens the freedom of all of us.
Hana Vazana-Grunwald is a director, playwright, and theatre group facilitator. She is the recipient of the Rosenblum Prize for Performing Arts (2022), and the Minister of Culture Award (2023). She is the founder and artistic director of Frechot Ensemble. Her work promotes a theatrical language emphasizing multiculturalism and oriental femininity. This is an artistic and political commitment to the silenced voices in Israeli society. Using community theatre tools, she underpins a new genre, poetic-documentary theatre, accentuating her personal, social, and historical experience. Her shows are performed in Israel and abroad.
Iris Eliya-Cohen is an artist, writer, and poet. She received the Yitzhak Navon Heritage Award (2018), and the Prime Minister’s Creativity Award (2015). She has published prose, poetry, as well as children’s books, including bestsellers Makatub, Galbi, Pele – Poems and Songs, and Grandma Turbo series. Her book Galbi and her poems Maternity and A Consensual Homicide were adapted for the theatre, and are currently performing in Israel and abroad.
Tehila Azulay-Shaul is a playwright, actress, and creator of activist and social documentary theatre that works mainly with silenced populations, such as female victims of violence and ultra-Orthodox women. She is the founder of Hashar Theatre for youth from the Ethiopian community. Her works include Thoughtful and Consensual Murder. She is a high-school teacher, a poet, and a producer of spoken word performances. She graduated from the Mandel Program for Cultural Leadership in the Negev, 2021-2022.
Special thanks to EVE, The Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre, Jaffa Theatre, Avi Gibson Bar-El.
This Hamlet belongs to the current generation. Director Yair Sherman bewitches his Generation-Z audience with his Generation-Z interpretation, and merges a political drama with a sharp satire about a young generation that prefers to sit back and not take sides in the political events that threaten to alter Denmark’s values. At the heart of the production lies a passion for theatre that uncovers hopes, anguish, and fears, all of which are the basic patterns for our family life and our society. It is a theatrical evening full of surprises, twists, and inventions. The Beit Lessin ensemble leads the audience on a riveting journey of cultural associations and exciting discoveries. It’s relevant, it’s beautiful, it’s funny – and it forces us to rediscover what we have almost forgotten: that high art can be communicative, and that with the right communication, we can elevate ourselves to become more human, rather than less.
Yair Sherman is an award-winning theatre director, and one of the most promising fresh voices in Israeli theatre today. Sherman was born in San Jose and grew up in Jerusalem. In 2003, he moved to NYC where he studied at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA). After completing his studies, Sherman returned to live in Tel Aviv. He has been working as a theatre director in numerous venues in Israel and abroad, and teaches at three of the country’s leading theatre academies.
In February 2023, after working on contemporary productions of Israeli and international classics, Sherman became Director in Residence of Beit Lessin Theatre in Tel Aviv. In 2016, he won awards for two separate productions: Best Director for his production of The Bacchae at Golden Hedgehog Fringe Theater Awards, and Best Director, Best Play, and Best Supporting Actor for The Endless Mourner at The Kufar International Festival in Minsk, Belarus. In 2019, he was invited to Beijing to direct Hanoch Levin’s epic play Requiem. Selected works: Death of a Salesman and Indecent – The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv; The Seagull and The Bride and the Butterfly Hunter – Gesher Theatre; The Maids – Elad Theatre; Requiem – Beijing; A Winter Funeral – Beer Sheva Theatre; and The Bacchae – Tmu-na Theatre.
Alit Kreiz invites three distinctive women of different ages to be her friends on stage for just one hour. What they all have in common is the magnetizing passion to exist within a work of art, in front of an audience. Their identity is built and dismantled by the audience’s gaze at them, and their gaze at the audience. They play remembering and forgetting, exile and belonging, beginnings and endings. Their personal narratives become entangled; the layers of their stories are revealed as part of an emotional striptease, and accumulate on stage as a pile of underwear alongside bouquets of flowers from a never-ending premiere. The performance looks at the models in our life; it empowers us to overcome expectations about our identities and roles, and leads us to truly understand what inspires us to be ourselves.
Model is a work that will read your thoughts, a work that will fantasize about you, that will make you its best friend. It will take care of you, and in the end also thank you.
Alit Kreiz is a performance art creator, an actress, and a lecturer. For the past twenty-five years she has been devising multidisciplinary performance-based, autobiographical, audience participation, and site-specific works. Her devised projects aim to investigate an open and honest way of communication, in order to reach a mutual humanistic understanding. Alit has been performing both in Europe and Israel. As artistic director of A2 Company, a London-based performance collaboration (1999-2015), Alit presented works in London, Paris, Vienna, Barcelona, Dortmund, Ljubljana, and Jerusalem. Alit also co-created works as a member of The People Show Company, the legendary UK performance art group. In Israel, Alit created solo autobiographical performances at Tmu-na Theatre and Tel Aviv Museum. Her recent autobiographical ensemble creation is performed at Habait Theatre. Her site-specific and participatory works have been presented at Tel Aviv Museum, The City Museum, Tel Aviv, Hulda Forest, Petach Tikva Museum for Modern Art, The Pussycat – ExStrip Club, Israel Festival, Mekudeshet Festival, Loving Art-Making Art Festival, Haifa Museum for Modern Art, Hazira Performance Art Arena, and Tel Aviv Site-Specific Festival, among others.
Name Drop: Hacameri is an event that examines the moments in which music becomes the soundtrack of our lives. Or is music just an excuse? Six performers with a cache of defining moments tied inexorably, almost involuntarily, to music, attempt to bring into words the connection between the wound and its tune – whether that tune is Nina Simone, Charlie Megira, techno, or the fantasy of becoming a musical theatre soloist… Love and disappointment, death and separation, sex and personal crusades – all of our lives have soundtracks. Unique, singular, burned into our psyches, ungoverned and unequivocal. The journey of Name Drop is a verbalization of life – intimate, painful – through the music that has always been there, that suddenly pops up, that will always take us back. Like a scent from our childhood, like mother’s cooking… Name Drop: Hacameri is an unusual move in the established repertoire theatre, that has adapted and re-produced a show that was born in fringe theatre.
Jason Danino Holt is an interdisciplinary artist known for his roles as a theatre maker, writer, visual artist, teacher, and artistic director. In 2019, after a decade as an independent theatre maker, he formalized his work into a theatre company, expanding its reach both nationally and internationally. He is also the co-artistic director and founder of Habait Theatre in Jaffa. Jason’s projects span various artistic mediums, consistently exploring new forms of expression. His signature style combines autobiography with fiction, embracing diversity in the pursuit of progressive ideals. His work delves into complex narratives, employing art as a powerful tool to navigate intricate dimensions of existence, particularly emphasizing underrepresented stories, and promoting inclusivity.
Raziya, a seventy-year-old woman who lives on a moshav, and whose dream is basically to have another grandson or two, embarks on a mission to save her son’s marriage, after he leaves home following a bitter argument with his wife.
She drags her husband Yitzhakal’e along on a crazy adventure of two innocent moshav dwellers in the big city. She isn’t particularly healthy, nor is she young, but her maternal worries give her strengths of which she herself was unaware.
The new comedy by Gur Koren (Romeo and Mom, Don’t Fight) sets a collision course between a woman who just wants to see her family happy, and her kids, the younger generation, who might be ruling the world, but don’t necessarily know what to do with it.
A recipient of the Tamar Rudich Award for Playwright of the Year, and the Rabinovich Foundation Yosef Millo Award for Director of the Year.
Gur Koren is the dramaturg of The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, and a recipient of the Israeli Theatre Awards Playwright of the Year, 2014. Writing credits include: at The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, Don’t Fight and Romeo and Mom (written with Gilad Kimchi); at Beit Lessin Theatre, The Actress and The Disabled (Israeli Theatre Awards Comedy of the Year); and at Gesher Theatre, Five Kilos of Sugar (directed by Yevgeny Arieh). Plays performed abroad: The Disabled, Teatro Sala Umberto, Rome, Italy; Kladno Municipal Theatre, Czech Republic; and Wort und Spiel Ensemble, Switzerland. Five Kilos of Sugar, Mainfranken Theatre Würzburg, Germany; and Teatr Dramatyczny, Bialystok, Poland.
Tamar Keenan is a theatre director, playwright, translator, dramatist, and the winner of the Yosef Milo Award for Best Director in both 2022 and 2023. Fresh out of Nissan Nativ Acting Studio, Tamar joined the world-famous Gesher Theatre. She was a prominent member of the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv for eighteen years before embarking on her directing career. Since 2016, she has directed over a dozen plays in Israel’s leading theatres. Tamar also serves as artistic director for Tzavta Theatre in Tel Aviv, and as co-artistic director of the theatre’s celebrated One Act Play Festival.
In the middle of the day, Dado, a successful children’s author, receives a message from his wife Natty that she isn’t coming home today. In an attempt to find her and understand why Natty has disappeared, Dado reflects on the past year of their lives, in which their youngest son was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The shocking news underscored the difference in attitude between the couple, the challenges of parenting, and the difficulty of accepting their child exactly as he is. With a lot of humor, the show disarms all the mines surrounding the diagnosis of a child with ASD, and emphasizes the values of accepting differences, as well as the importance of open communication and unconditional love. Short Circuit is an intimate show, in which the audience takes an active part in the couple’s journey.
Noa Lazar-Keinan is a playwright and screenwriter. She holds a BA from the Multidisciplinary Program in the Arts at Tel Aviv University, and is a graduate of the Yoram Loewenstein Acting Studio. Author of the blog “This is not what I was promised” in the daily Haaretz. Her plays include Short Circuit (Beer Sheva Theatre, 2022), which was invited to WeltBühne Festival at the Residenz Theatre Munich (2023), and Bertod and Agnes (Habima National Theatre, 2019), and Estonian Drama Theatre-Tallinn, (2022/23). Her short play The Memory Game was part of an international collaboration between Habima and the Düsseldorfer Schauspielhaus (2009). Her plays for youth: Dreams of Others and Itamar – The First Hebrew Child.
Ronnie Brodetzky is a director and writer. She graduated from Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts (Directing), and from Tel Aviv University’s Interdisciplinary Arts Program (MA). She is a recipient of the 2020 Rosenblum Performing Arts Award. Her works: at The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, Birthday Candles (Heidel) and Hubeza (Keret) with The Revolution Orchestra; at Haifa Theatre, Aquarium – young actors lip sync elderly people in a swimming pool, How to Get Up From A Chair – an original play based on instructional YouTube videos, and Circus of Jews (an adaptation of Englander); at Salzburger LandesTheater, Aquarium and 1000 Tutorials; and at Tzavta Theatre: Typing…. – a play based on original WhatsApp conversations.
One fine day – or one night – Yona Popukh decides that he’s done with being married to Leviva. He sets out to find a different life, and perhaps a new love.
Thus begins this witty play by one of Israel’s best playwrights.
A funny and touching bedtime story about the possibility of realizing a dream we all have – starting a fresh life at a not-so-fresh age.
Hanoch Levin (1943-1999) wrote plays, sketches, songs, stories, and poetry, and directed most of his own plays. He developed a unique dramatic and theatrical language, created by combining poetic text with images designed with the actors, the set, costume and lighting designers, the composer, and the choreographer. His plays are characterized by his ability to combine the work of different artists, and have always been a celebration of words and visual images, based on a great love for the theatre and all who take part in the performance. Levin left a spiritual-artistic legacy: fifty-six plays, only thirty-three of them performed in his lifetime (his political satires have all been performed), two books of prose, two collections of sketches and songs, a book of poems, and two books for children.
Moshe Kepten is one of the most renowned directors in Israel, currently Artistic Director of Habima National Theatre. For three consecutive years, he was the artistic director of the Israel Festival in Jerusalem, an interdisciplinary celebration of art from around the world. He graduated with honors from Tel Aviv University’s Master’s in Theatre Program. Kepten has directed numerous plays and musicals for all Israeli theatre companies, including Spring Awakening, Bent, Behind the Fence, Shakespeare in Love, Les Misérables, Love Love Love, Evita, Taken at Midnight, My Fair Lady, Fatal Attraction, Birthmark, Beaufort, The Dinner Game, and many others.
Six years in an hour-and-a-half.
For the past six years, we’ve gone through fertility treatments. We never talked about it. There wasn’t anyone to ask in our surroundings, because not a single couple talked about it. This play is based on our story, and the stories of other women and couples, and is comprised of moments from real and imagined memories, documentary materials, and the choreography of waiting rooms.
A couple undergoing fertility treatments is stuck in a waiting room together with a chorus of waiting women. They deal with powers greater than themselves, such as the medical institution, which alongside the desire to help is busy with endless bureaucracy, ego, and profit. Or family members, friends, and strangers who ask “how they are”, thus only deepening the couple’s trauma, and the thunderous silence surrounding their emotional state.
The show won prizes for Best Performance, Best Actress (Lir Katz), and Best Stage Design (Iris Mualem) at the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre, 2022.
Nataly Zukerman is an independent performance artist, dramaturg, artistic director and lecturer. She has created and participated in numerous theatre, dance, and performance works, globally, spanning her twenty-year career. Nataly’s work deals with notions of body, identity, and disability, as she creates autobiographical and interdisciplinary works. Her works include: Blueberry, for which she won Best Performance at the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre; Practice Makes Perfect, for which she won Best Performer at the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre, 2015; The Other Body, for which she won Best Performer at the Israeli fringe awards, 2014. In the past two years, Nataly has served (together with Ayala Frenkel) as co-artistic director of Kelim Dance Festival at Kelim Choreographic Center. Nataly also works as a lecturer in the Theatre Department at Tel Aviv University, and Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts, teaching performance and theatre education.
Tomer Koppel, a graduate of the Performing Arts School at Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts, has been a professional actor since 2014. He has performed in various theatre productions, such as Eyes Closed, Mona Lisa Has a Moustache, Alone Together, Startup, A Nightmare, Bus 92, Shushuz, The Stronger, Golden Heart Flower, New World Order, Last to Go, and Practice Makes Perfect. On television, he has appeared in shows like A Very Important Man, The Dubbed, and The Kibbutzniks. Since 2020, Tomer has been working as a guide for healthy sexuality and sex education for teens in schools.
Atalia Branzburg is a performance and theatre creator and educator. She has created works in Israel and Ireland, in which she also participated. Her works include Blueberry (co-creator) – Best Performance Award at the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre; The Other Body – Best Performer at the Israeli Fringe Awards; The Opening of the New Branch at the War Zone Museum: Bad Renro and Lady Gaga on Amud Annan (with Dov Or Ner, Tmu-na Theatre), and It Folds (Junk Ensemble, Dublin Fringe Festival).
Ori Lenkinski is a Tel Aviv-based dancer, actress, choreographer, and journalist. Her work, whether on stage, the internet, or on paper, is devoted to exploring the connection between words and movement. As a dancer, Ori has worked with choreographers in the USA, Europe, and Israel. Her works include The Painting, Portrait #2, The Suit, Meet Me in the Market, Help Desk, and Birth Preparation Course, as well as the dance films Carriage and Expecting. Ori’s works have been presented throughout Israel, North America, and Europe.
*The performance contains content related to miscarriage, termination of pregnancy, and fertility issues.
Winner of Best Director and Best Playwright Awards at the Ephraim Kishon Comedy Festival.
A theatrical piece about a father, who is actually a child, and his two daughters. This is a fantastical autobiographical show where fiction, humor, and sorrow are the substance of everyday life. The protagonist is seventy-four-year-old Nachmi Dreamer, a controversial social media influencer, a rebel, a widower, a lonely man who dreams of becoming a writer. Through his many writings, personal diary snippets, failed plays, and fantastic pieces of prose that have never seen the light of day, the audience is exposed to a funny, sad, and absurd chain of existential moments. These are both touching and distressing at the same time.
A fourteen-year-old boy plays Nachmi, while the two sisters, Anat and Nurit Dreamer, play themselves. Together they seek to reveal the experience of growing up with a single parent who never actually behaved like a father; childish, helpless, mischievous, and without boundaries. Through this fascinating personal family story, the creators raise questions about the relationship between loss, madness, theatre, and love.
Nurit Dreamer is a director, creator, and performer. A graduate of the School of Visual Theatre, Jerusalem (2018), she received an award for excellence from the Jerusalem Foundation in 2016 and 2018. She studied and trained in various programs, including Jan Fabre, Yasmeen Godder, and Itzik Giuli. Her stage works: Kushelirabak and You’ll Never Walk Alone. Public art works: Intimately at the Football Stadium and Talking with Strangers on the Bus. She has performed her own works in several festivals, including The Train Festival, Intimadance, and Israel Festival. She has exhibited in various spaces, including The New Gallery Artists’ Studios Teddy, and Ma’amuta Art Center in Jerusalem. She is currently studying cinema and history.
Anat Dreamer is a multidisciplinary performer, writer, director, spoken word artist, workshop facilitator, and creative consultant. She studied dance theatre at Kibbutzim College of Education, Technology and the Arts, and trained in various programs including Jan Fabre, Ivo Dimchev, Sharon Zuckerman Veizer, and Yasmeen Godder. Stage works: The Rest of Cherub, a live poetry and animation show, Saving Shifuk, Lilith: A Fantastic Mythical Thriller, and Flour Ball – A Surrealist Celebration of Death. Street performances: The Chariot, a traveling street performance, and Star Mail, a community art project. She participated in Basic Instinct, a satirical musical cabaret show based on the testimonies of female soldiers who served in the occupied Palestinian territories.
The digital revolution that’s making our lives easier is full of promise – it’s the end of the decision-making drama. At the same time, the tech euphoria with its unlimited possibilities will ask big questions about being human. Yael Ronen designs a world in which the characters have to confront the challenges of the next evolutionary stage, Homo Digitalis: their own insignificance when billions of people are forced out of the job market by algorithms, symbiotic relationships with artificial intelligence, and virtual realities. Digital dictatorships in which our data becomes a tool in the hands of a few – or the ethical dilemmas that come with the unforeseeable consequences of genetic design. And what does the whole thing actually mean for so-called “free will”? Within this experimental setting, Yuval Noah Harari’s thoughts become the starting point for research that reduces the contradictions of a possible future to absurdity. Are there utopias of living together that we’ve missed forever?
Ilan Ronen was the artistic director of Habima National Theatre from 2004 to 2016, after running two other theatres – The Jerusalem Khan Theatre and The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv. In the past decade, Ilan has paid considerable attention to the expansion of Habima’s international activity. One of its most important tours was of Ronen’s version of The Merchant of Venice in London’s Globe Theatre during the 2012 International Shakespeare Festival. Ronen’s recent directing credits include A Streetcar Named Desire, The Miser, Les Liaisons Dangereuses, and Alone in Berlin.
Yael Ronen, in-house Gorki director, was born in Jerusalem. She comes from a theatre family, and is internationally considered one of the most exciting theatre makers of her generation.
Dimitrij Schaad was born in Kazakhstan. From 2005 to 2009 he studied at the Bavarian Theatre Academy August Everding, and at the Theatre Academy of St. Petersburg. After appearances in Munich and Essen, he was an ensemble member at Bochum Theatre from 2010 to 2013. He has collaborated with directors such as Roger Vontobel, Sebastian Nübling, Jan Klata, and Jan Neumann. In 2011, he was awarded the Bochum Theatre Prize, and was honored at the NRW Theatretreffen Festival as Best Young Actor. From 2013 to 2019, Dimitrij Schaad was a member of the Gorki Theatre’s ensemble.
The Death Imprint delves into Eva’s complex world as a second-generation child, born into a legacy of trauma resulting from her mother surviving Libya’s horrors, and her father’s Holocaust orphan past. He attributes his abusive behavior to Hitler’s lingering presence, which he believes controls him. Eva’s turbulent journey begins in childhood, when she “inherits” Hitler from her father following his serious injury in a suicide attempt. Hitler offers an agreement – if she hides him in her head, he will save her father in return. And so, Hitler inflames her anger and distances her from her family. As she grows older, her rage increases, leading to a suicide attempt and psychiatric hospitalization. A compassionate young psychiatrist offers hope, determined to free Eva from Hitler’s grip. Can she sever her deepest, most troubling relationship?
The play alternates between Eva’s stark present and her haunting past, using surrealism, circus elements, and psycho-drama to explore the human psyche. It delves into historical trauma, abuse, and mental health with sensitivity and humor, engaging the audience in a thought-provoking journey. The Death Imprint is an emotionally charged exploration of Eva’s life, inviting reflection on the enduring legacy of historical trauma, and the power of resilience.
Meirav Gruber is a versatile playwright and actress. At the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv, her roles include Sheindele, The Merchant of Venice, Murder, Mother Courage, and The Rebels (Actress of the Year), among others. At Habima National Theatre: Tamara, Betrayed, and The Ad. At Beit Lessin Theatre: A Streetcar Named Desire, and many others. Tahel Theatre featured her in All About My Mother and Vincent River. She ventured into playwriting with The Death Imprint. Her television presence includes series such as The Comedy Store, Scandal, Saturdays and Holidays, In Treatment, The Champion, The Dreamers, New York, Malaby Express, and Virgins, as well as many films, including Purple Grass and Real Time.
Sivane Kretchner is the co-founder of Tahel Theatre, and was its co-artistic director and dramaturg from 2012 to 2016. Her directing credits include Only The Distressed Remains, Inverted Sky (a rock opera, winner of the Golden Hedgehog Award for Best Performance), and The Death Imprint. She created Alterman in French, and performed in it under the name Siv-Anne. She performed in numerous theatre productions, and is currently part of the Mediatheque Theatre. Cinema credits include Sarah in The Reports of Sarah and Salim (Muayad Alayan), and Kochi in Single Plus (Dover Kosashvili). Television: Mikmik in The Secret of Michal’s Songs, and Dina in Johnny and the Knights of Galilee.
Produced with support of:
EVE, a non-profit organization of independent theatre and the performance arts creators
Ministry of Culture
Rabinovich Foundation for the Arts
First person – me, deaf. Second person – you, hearing. Third person – interpreter.
I rely on her. You rely on her. She relies on both of us. One moment she is you. The next moment she is me. Who is she?
Is she being accurate? Do the movements of her hands convey the nuances of your language, your tone of voice, the pauses between the words? Does she manage to transform the rich expressiveness of sign language into speech?
She is my ear, my voice. If only I could do without her!
She calls and speaks for me in a government office. She interprets for me the instructions and words of encouragement from the midwife during childbirth. She interprets for me the Kaddish prayer my brother is saying for our father.
The psychologist’s questions, she signs to me. Is this therapy session a dyad or a triad? The psychologist speaks to her, explaining “what HE needs to be doing”. “HE” is me. Now, the third person is me.
Atay Citron is an emeritus professor of theatre, and former chair of the Theatre Department at the University of Haifa, where he founded the pioneering academic training program for medical clowns in 2006. His directing career includes the outdoor performance En Zo Ben Zo at the Israel Festival (first prize in the street theatre competition), its sequel, Yanti Parazi at the Jerusalem Khan Theatre, and several devised pieces that were performed in Israel, Canada, the USA, and France. His research interests include shamanism, ritual clowning, medical clowning, and the history of avant-garde performance. He is co-editor of Performance Studies in Motion (Bloomsbury, 2014), and was artistic director of the Bat-Yam International Street Theatre Festival, the Acco Festival of Alternative Theatre, and the School of Visual Theatre, Jerusalem. In 2004, he was awarded the Rosenblum Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts. In 2014, he formed the Ebisu Sign Language Theatre Laboratory as part of the Grammar of the Body research project led by Professor Wendy Sandler at the University of Haifa, and funded by the European Research Council. Today, Ebisu is an independent theatre company that devises performances combining physical theatre with sign language, for deaf and hearing spectators alike.
Because the Night is a one-off art event. Twenty-one participants board a dark ride built especially for the event in a south Tel Aviv hangar, and go on a journey through the misty and starry darkness of the night. The journey inside the train cars carries the passengers/participants into a world of animals and nocturnal creatures, ghosts and spacemen. Traveling between rooms and forests, planets and stars, the ride slowly builds up into an all-encompassing, mesmerizing experience that echoes contemporary realities and dreams.
Because the Night is an invitation to an extraordinary mystery tour, an immersive art and performance experience in which we’re pulled into the depths of night, and fly into the future. A dark ride through a parallel universe.
Guy Gutman is an artist and director. His works have been featured in many international and Israeli festivals. He is the director of Miklat 209, and former head of the School of Visual Theatre.
Gabi Kricheli is a multidisciplinary artist, and holds a BFA from Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, Jerusalem. Alongside his visual practice, Kricheli is also a musician and a set designer for dance and theatre.
Ensemble 209 is a contemporary theatre company that operates in a wide artistic field. The group includes artists, performers, researchers, and intellectuals who work as a collective.
*Number of passengers: 21
*Participation is by advance registration with the Isra-Drama production staff.
With his follow-up piece to the cult hit show Tavas (Peacock), Binyamin returns to the stage. This time, he engages with his own reflections. He explores his body, the way he walks, and the glint in his eyes. As a homosexual man, he plays with the possibility of being attracted to himself, taking himself on a date, and having a romantic relationship with himself. Blurring the boundaries between the biographical and the imaginary, Binyamin embarks on a psychedelic journey that starts at a nightclub in Tel Aviv, and winds up on Mount Olympus. He uses ancient and contemporary archetypes to redefine the common perception of “narcissism” as self-love that may lead to healing rather than destruction. Accompanied by live electronic music, Binyamin fuses stand-up comedy, classic theatre, and visual theatre, transforming the tragic myth of Narcissus into a contemporary and absurd comedy. Winner of Best Actor Award from the Israeli Comedy Festival, and at The Ephraim Kishon Comedy Festival in Jerusalem.
Binyamin Yom Tov is a multifaceted actor and creator from Tel Aviv, known for his award-winning performance in the show Tavas. Binyamin’s artistic exploration is often themed around identity, stereotypes, archetypes, and blurring the lines between autobiography and fantasy. He grew up in Netanya, a city in Israel’s geosocial periphery, steeped in a conservative atmosphere, the youngest of four children in a traditional Jewish-Persian family. Following his military service, he began studying and practicing different aspects of the performing arts, dreaming of someday creating his own show. Together with Shani Shabtai and Daniel Magon, he created the autobiographical fantasy Tavas, which encapsulates his colorful origins and rich background.
Shani Shabtai is a creator, actress, director, and teacher of performance and theatre.
Daniel Magon is a creator, actor, musician, singer, voice actor, director, and translator.
The production is grateful to Ariel Bronz and Danny Carmi Panov.
Produced with the support of the Israeli Lottery Council for Culture and Arts, Habait Theatre, and Incubator Theatre. The production premiered at the Ephraim Kishon Comedy Festival, where it won Best Actor Award.
When my mother ends a phone call with me, she always says: “I love you special”. When I was thinking about a name for the show, I knew this was it. Because this isn’t a normal love between a mother and her daughter, and this isn’t an ordinary love for the theatre.
It’s funny, it’s cruel, it’s twisted, it’s special.
My mother worked at Habima National Theatre for forty years as a casting director; so, when I was six years old, she gave me my first role. My own mother casted me to be one of the children Medea is about to murder. This memory encouraged me to invite her to perform on stage with me. She is seventy-two years old, and this is her first role ever. Using masks of my mother’s face and my own, we exchange our identities, do forbidden things, and create a visual and dramatic ceremony. As you will discover, in my ceremonies, people lose their heads.
Awarded Best Show and Best Director at the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre, 2022.
Achinoam Mendelson is a multidisciplinary artist, theatre director, musician, and performer. She creates performance and theatre shows, video art, and also works as a performer, violinist, and dramaturg for several independent Israeli artists. Her works have been shown at Hanut 31 Theatre & Gallery, The Israel Museum, Hazira Performance Art Arena, Habait Theatre, and others. She is a member of the Quantum Choir ensemble that has performed in various museums and theatres in Israel. During her military service as a “Distinguished Musician” (violinist), Mendelson performed with the Tel Aviv Academy Orchestra, and went on a tour in Israel, Germany, and Brazil, under the baton of maestro Zubin Metah.
She holds a degree in Philosophy and Liberal Arts from Shalem College, where she founded the college’s choir. In addition, she holds a degree in Visual Art Creation from the School of Visual Theatre. Her show I Love You Special received Best Director and Best Show Awards at the Acco Festival of Alternative Israeli Theatre, 2022. In 2023 she created and curated a series of performance events that took place in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.
Long ago, Homo sapiens were just another animal of no particular importance. Now, we are masters of the earth, stronger than ever, lords of the universe, self-appointed gods. Gods who don’t realize they are the last human species on earth. Is there anything more dangerous than gods who don’t know what they want?
In this new work, an adaptation for seven actors, a movie camera, and a single skeleton, the journey of Homo sapiens, our journey, is brought to life. Our discoveries, our inventions, our abilities explode onto the stage, laid bare in their beauty, wonder, and raw power.
In his innovative and unique theatre language, PuppetCinema, Zvi Sahar combines theatre, movement, live cinema, and puppetry, and searches for the answer to the ultimate question – what is our next step going to be?
PuppetCinema Using a cinematographic aesthetic, a documentarian’s eye, and the tropes of cinema verité, PuppetCinema productions shape the audience’s focus with a strong and steady hand. What began as a creative experiment in Israel in 2009, has evolved into a mission to explore a dialogue between puppetry, object theatre, film, foley, and live feed. PuppetCinema was born out of a desire to build an artistic synergy between these complementary mediums, where they can happily coexist and thrive and, most importantly, help tell a good story.
Zvi Sahar is a director, actor, and puppeteer. He holds a BA in Theatre Studies from University of Haifa. Sahar established PuppetCinema in 2009, presenting Planet Egg at Puppet Lab at St. Ann’s Warehouse, NYC.
His works – Salt of the Earth (2014), Gulliver (2016), Suddenly (2017), Matt (2019), and The Big Bang (2021) – have participated in numerous international festivals, including BAM Next Wave Festival, Hong Kong Arts Festival, Taiwan International Festival of Arts, Theater der Welt Festival, and Charleville’s Festival Mondial des Théâtres de Marionettes. In 2019, Sahar was named Artistic Director of Itim Ensemble, established by director Rina Yerushalmi.
An optimistic refugee arrives in a country that’s a complete nervous wreck, hoping to start a new, peaceful life. But in his efforts to fit in, he gets caught up in a series of unfortunate events. An abandoned baby lands in his lap, and the two set out on a journey of mutual growth that will teach them about life and its beauty.
This piece of physical theatre communicates solely through visual language, and demonstrates the power of silence. It explores the conflict between gentleness and violence, the clash between naivety and manipulation. The protagonist is an outsider, an artist who suddenly finds himself in the reality we all live in – an extremely dense, intensive, stressful, and sometimes absurd reality. He tries to connect with people and fit in, but struggles greatly because it is an aggressive society. Obviously, this sense of suffocation reaches a point where you no longer need to speak because there’s nothing left to say. Anything you say sounds a bit clichéd, so maybe it’s better not to say it but simply narrate it.
The show received a recommendation from the National Culture Basket’s Theatre Repertoire Committee and the Israel Association of Community Centers.
Shirili Deshe For the past twenty years she has been acting, directing, and writing for the stage and television. She is a graduate of the Jacques Lecoq Physical Theatre School, Paris.
At Haifa Municipal Theatre she created the show Goodbye and Not Au Revoir. Directing credits also include Teibele and Her Demon and Grannies at The Jerusalem Khan Theatre, Zaza’s Friends (Best Director Award at Haifa International Children’s Theatre Festival), Fatso at The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv (recipient of the Millo Prize), and others.
For Orna Porat Children’s Theatre she wrote and co-directed The Seven Dwarfs, A Sour Face, and Two Are Better (winner of the ASSITEJ Award), among others.
Vitali Friedland is a theatre and film director, photographer and a graduate of the Nissan Nativ Acting Studio. His film Lamps Lit on The Towpath, made in collaboration with Efim Graboy, was an award nominee at the Palm Springs Film Festival. His film Juices was screened at the Cannes Film Festival, and he directed Donizetti’s Rita with the Israeli Chamber Opera Ashdod.
Television credits include Battle in Jerusalem (Channel 1) and The Little Drummer Girl (2018) (BBC). Theatre credits: at Beit Lessin Theatre, The Revisionist and Taming of the Shrew. At The Jerusalem Khan Theatre, Scapin the Schemer, A Tale of Love and Darkness, Teibele and Her Demon, The Government Inspector, Adieu Mr. Haffmann, and many more.
*This production contains sounds of explosions and sirens.