Orna Porat Theater gets new CEO
Ran Gwetta, 33, will be the new general director of the Orna Porat Children and Youth Theater, and the youngest theater head in the country. He comes to OPCYT after three and a half years at the helm of the Givatayim Theater and four years running the Fringe at ZOA house prior to that. He came to theater administration from the stage, having started his professional career as a stage and TV actor. - Jerusalem Post staff
A relieved JSO turns 70
The newly reprieved and soon to be financially healthy Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra-IBA joyfully celebrated the start of its 70th anniversary season with the first of its six Musical Discovery concerts, a program on lesser known or unknown works by Czech composers. On October 25 and 27 Bravo Broadway, the first of its three light classical concerts, presents Anne Runolfsson, Jan Horvath and Doug LaBreque in songs from such as Cats, Phantom of the Opera and Evita by Andrew Lloyd Webber as well as Broadway classics such as My Fair Lady, Annie Get Your Gun and Cabaret. The singers are all Broadway veterans.
In addition subscribers have eight classical concerts, the liturgical series of three concerts, three Friday morning programs and six for the kids in Do-Re-Mix to choose among. And this being the 70th season, the JSO is celebrating Israeli composers such as Menahem Zur, Ron Weidberg and Gil Shohat alongside the ever popular Beethoven, Mahler, Mozart and Bach, to name just a few.
And all this was about to go down the tubes when the IBA announced abruptly that it was cutting the funding of its own orchestra from NIS 11 million or so to NIS 6 million, according to JSO general director Yossi Talgan. What's more, this happened just as the JSO was about to announce victory in its rigorous recovery-from-bankruptcy program, and get out of receivership.
The resultant outcry was unprecedented in vigor and determination, spearheaded by Talgan, and musical director Leon Botstein who came to the orchestra four years ago and worked for free because of the JSO's fiscal plight. The result is that Broadcast Authority minister Yitzhak Herzog got another NIS 2.5 million from the Treasury to add to the IBA's NIS 6 million. The US Friends of the JSO have upped their contribution from $500,000 to $750,000, "and when we get out of receivership at the end of 2007," says Talgan, "We'll save another NIS 1 million in costs." - Helen Kaye
Beit Lessin returns to 'Golden Pond'
Miriam Zohar and Ilan Dar play Ethel and Norman, the elderly heroes of Earnest Thompson's gentle comedy On Golden Pond that opens Saturday at Bet Lessin. His screenplay for the 1981 movie that starred Katherine Hepburn, Henry Fonda and Jane Fonda as the couple's daughter, won Thompson an Oscar for best screenplay. The play itself ran on Broadway for nearly a year.
When a couple's only daughter, her new man and her son join all get together at a summer place on Golden Pond in New Hampshire, life becomes a little fraught. Old antagonisms and misunderstandings surface, but innate civility and the place itself work their magic, and the family forges new ties. - Helen Kaye