This year’s Acre Festival of Alternative Israeli Theater from October 1-4 surges
and pulses with vivid imagination, creative energy and artistic
On offer are 11 plays competing for cash prizes, as well
as guest productions, exhibitions, special events and a giant cornucopia of 38
free shows in a bouquet of genres from clowning to installations and performance
One these freebies is Company with Balls, a troupe from Holland that
will parade through the alleyways of Acre’s Old City with a four-meter high
puppet as just one of the attractions.
One of the most intriguing of the
11 competition plays is Giant by Ariel. E. Eshbal and Isobel Lewis, an
Israeli-Geman collaboration on process of all kinds that plays continuously for
12 hours. The purchase of a ticket allows you to come and go at will.
faces at Acre include Daniel Zehavi with Sunrises; Family Dinner – four short
plays by Ariel Bronz; and dancer/choreographer Aharona Israel with Marathon, her
Other shows include The Peacock from Silwan that is presented
in a private home in the Old City; We’re Building a Port Here, a rap-type based
entertainment; and Hyssop Poison by Arab-Israeli playwright Ala
All the plays, whether serious or comic, “don’t pull any
punches. This year, as previously, we rummage and delve into our existence, even
if we draw blood,” said outgoing artistic director Smadar Ya’aron at a recent
press conference. She is a founding director of the Jewish-Arab Acre Theater
Center and, with her colleague Moni Yosef, has been guiding the festival since
2009. Both will receive a special prize on opening night in appreciation of
The incoming artistic director for Acre 2013 is director,
playwright and actor Gil Alon, who works a lot in Europe, has remained
determinedly outside the mainstream for his entire career, and won awards for
his direction of George Tabori's unsettling Mein Kampf at Acre last
The festival manages on the small budget of some NIS 3 million
plus, most of which comes from the Culture Ministry and the Acre Municipality.
Acre mayor Shimon Lankry mentioned that Bank Hapoalim had donated NIS 100,000, a
truly munificent contribution.
Tickets range from NIS 35 – NIS 75 and, of
course, there are all kinds of deals.
If you’ve never been, and you
understand Hebrew, then go. It’s one of our great festivals.
To find out
more about the festival, go to www.accofestival.co.il – it’s in English.