JANUARY 25, 2021 - Tel Aviv-Yafo launches $195,000 incubator for emerging playwrights

The municipality and four theaters aim to openly cultivate a new generation of writers for the Israeli stage.

JANUARY 25, 2021 - Tel Aviv-Yafo launches $195,000 incubator for emerging playwrights

* Almost $200,000 will be invested in the project – 50% by Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality and 50% by the city's four theaters * Combination of the city's start-up and culture scenes *

Tel Aviv-Yafo, January 25 – Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality is proud to present a new and impactful initiative for the culture sector and theater-lovers alike: "The Future of Theater."

Combining Tel Aviv-Yafo's prominent culture sector and world-renowned innovation scene, four incubators for young and up-and-coming playwrights will be launched in 2021 at the city's four repertory theaters.

The initiative will lead directly to 16 stage projects, written by young playwrights – residents of the city and under 40 years old – for Habima Theater, Beit Lessin Theater, Gesher Theater and Cameri Theater.

All the writers sponsored by the project will receive payment for their playwriting and dramaturgical work, with every theater undertaking to stage at least one project from its incubator in 2022 – for at least a 30-play run. The artistic directors of the theaters reserve the right to choose from the various projects.

The project will be funded by a budget amounting to approximately NIS 640,000 (approx. $195,000) – 50% from municipal funds and the remaining 50% from the theaters. Each playwright will receive NIS 30,000 (approx. $9,200) and each accompanying dramatist receiving NIS 10,000 (approx. $3,060).

For the first time, the theaters and municipality aim to openly cultivate a new generation of writers for the Israeli stage, targeting results which will bring a young crowd of a similar age to the theater. Selected projects will deal with the most contentious topics faced by the new, young generation of playgoers: economic survival in the city; the job race; societal rifts; and sexual identity conflict.

Giyora Yahalom, Director of the Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality Department of Cultural Affairs: "In the 1970s and 80s, a new generation of playwrights burst onto the Israeli stage. The works of Hanoch Levin, Hillel Mittelpunkt, Edna Mazia, Joshua Sobol and Miriam Kainy echoed the audience of their own age, and founded a new generation of Israeli playgoers who fell in love with theater forever. "The Future of Theater" aspires to give birth to the next generation of Israeli playwrights. The list of plays in development is unparalleled and instills hope that we are helping to advance a new golden age that will further enrich the spirit of the city."

The project represents the latest in a long list of initiatives and assistance granted by Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality to artists since the outbreak of COVID-19.

These include: a grant program for self-employed Tel Avivian artists working in disciplines including visual art, dance and music; an assistance fund worth NIS 700,000 (approx. $215,000) established by Mayor Ron Huldai; a wide range of outdoor exhibitions and festivals; broadcasts of artistic entertainment from the city's cultural institutions; and intimate open-air performances at cafes, restaurants and museums.

Photos of Tel Aviv theaters courtesy of Guy Yechiely: https://bit.ly/3iILlai