Hanoch Levine sweeps Israel Theater Prizes

The ceremony was elegant, professional and hosted crisply by Lazarov and Micki Kamm.

Theater Review 88 (photo credit: )
Theater Review 88
(photo credit: )
The Cameri production of Hanoch Levine's Hartiti et Libi (Make My Heart Flutter) won most of the major awards at the Israel Theater Prize ceremonies last Friday. It won Best Production, Best Director for Udi Ben Moshe, Best Actor for Rami Baruch, Best Supporting Actress for Gitta Munte, Best Music by Keren Peles, and Best Playwright for its author in a nostalgic tribute to Levine who died in 1999. Helena Yarlova won Best actress for her portrayal of Hannah Rovina in Edna Mazia's Hiyah O Lo Hiyah (Was It a Dream), also a Cameri production, for which the very gifted Yehezkel Lazarov won Best Choreography. Best Supporting Actor went to Yossi Eini for his totally mesmerizing Iago in the Khan production of Othello. Udi Ben Moshe is also the director of the Khan's Marriage which won Best Comedy. Avenue Q, the lively musical satire on twenty-somethings in New York won Best Entertainment. The Gesher production of another Levin play, Yakitsch and Puptche, won Best Set and Costumes for young Michael Karamenko and Most Promising Actress for the very attractive Neta Shpigelman who plays the very ugly Puptche with such verve. Most Promising Actor went to Ro'i Assaf for The Child. The ceremony itself has come a long way. In contrast to the amateurish first years, this one was elegant, professional and hosted crisply by Lazarov and Micki Kamm, who also danced the opening number. Anat Waxman and Keren Mor provided some delicious and deadpan comedy leading up to the envelope for Best Director. The honorees delivered themselves of the usual platitudes, but there were moments. Gitta Munte raised her arms like a victorious boxer, her voice shaking as she accepted the award. Helena Yarlova asked the audience to applaud her fellow nominees, Leah Kenig, Yevgenia Dodina and Meyrav Gruber. Rami Baruch indicated fellow nominee Sasson Gabai, saying "This is his year." When Oded Kottler walked onto the stage to receive the Meir Margalit Prize for Life Achievement, the entire audience rose in a spontaneous standing ovation.