Now that Ya'akov Agmon is no longer boss of the Habimah National Theater, he has returned his baby, "TheaterNetto," to Suzanne Dellal, where it started 16 years ago. The monodramas which make up the festival event were a real risk at the time, but Agmon had faith the public would like the one person shows - especially if there was a prize for the best performance. He was right. Over the years the festival has been consistently popular and some 200 actors have taken the bit in their teeth and climbed alone onto the TheaterNetto stage.
This year there are 10 plays in competition chosen from 80 submissions and Agmon says "there doesn't seem to be a unifying theme. The overall level of excellence, however, is definitely a cut above previous years. After all the very fact of an actor's willingness to get up on a stage all by himself is already an indication of his talent and we have some really fine directors this year."
The plays include: "Job, Pebbles, and The Elephant," based on a story by Yoram Kaniuk which deals with Job and his three and a half meter elephant buddy. They enounter a few problems on the way to Africa and learn a thing or two about friendship.
"Tom Fine" by Will Eno was an Edinburgh Festival winner in 2004. This coming of age story is translated and performed by Alon Neuman. In "Spitting Distance" Halifa Natur portrays a young man who decides to fly home on 9/11. Written by Taher Naguib, it is directed by Ofira Henig. "Cappucino in Ramallah" by Suwad Amiri and directed by Nola Chilton has Salwa Nakura performing in five stories about the daily lives of Palestinians, and in "Berta and the Art of Maintenance," written and acted by Irit Bashan, we meet Berta, an ancient Vespa scooter that's landed her owner in the middle of nowhere.
The other actors are Shlomo Terlovsky in "One Man," Yael Stern in "Ruchele's Diary," Yael Caravan in "The Way Home," Dalia Shimko in "The First Lady of the Third Reich" and Orna Katz in "Play Dead".