About - The Israel Festival



Held for the 62nd consecutive year, the Israel Festival is a staple of Israel’s cultural calendar and for years has set the gold standard for artistic excellence in Israel in general and Jerusalem in particular. A perennial spirit of regeneration and curiosity propels the entire organization to acts of precision, thoughtful exploration, and learning, making the festival a world-renowned event. 
Every year, the festival program comprises existing or original works in an extraordinarily broad range of artistic and stage disciplines, showcasing new artistic trends and stage languages as well as outstanding classical pieces.  Alongside and through this artistic excellence, the festival champions understanding, tolerance and multiculturalism, and serves as a professional platform for an encounter and a dialogue. Over 35,000 people visit the festival each year, and tens of thousands are exposed to the ripples of its activity throughout Israel.

The diversity of cultural proposals featured in the festival attracts cultural consumers, professionals, public opinion leaders, families and a loyal audience that has been walking with the festival for decades, flocking to the shows from all over Israel.
The festival also has close ties with social organizations, community administrations, and labor unions, universities and art schools throughout Israel. We consider it our responsibility to use the platform given to us to promote social awareness and educational, community, and environmental values. Special attention is given to making the festival accessible to a wide range of audiences by subsidizing tickets for disadvantaged populations, people with special needs, the elderly, soldiers, students and more.
The festival is supported by the Ministry of Culture and Sports, Jerusalem Municipality, the Jerusalem Foundation, embassies and businesses, and is a member of the European Festivals Association (EFA) and the Silk Road Festivals Association.

Past festival participants include Bill Forsythe, the Kirov Ballet, Peter Brook, Complicité, Zakir Hussein, Daniel Barenboim, Laurie Anderson, Boris Charmatz, The Trisha Brown Dance Company, Robert Wilson, Lucinda Childs, Romeo Castelluchi, Jan Fabre, Philippe Quesne, Angelica Liddel, Ensemble Modern, Julien Gosselin, Xavier Le Roy, Doris Uhlich, Wang Chong, Marlene Monteiro Freitas, Lina Lapelytė, Vaiva Grainytė, Rugilė Barzdžiukaitėand, Theo Mercier, Àlex Rigola and many more

Martial | Art
Early in our work on the upcoming festival, we couldn’t help but take note of the real-time events, which led us to think about the concept of “martial arts.” All the while, as the artistic program was taking shape, we were looking for answers to questions about the role and place of art in the current, conflictual reality. And once that thought entered, it began to take root

Martial art. On their own, these two words are worlds apart, but together they share a fascinating connection: values such as observation, devotion, sacrifice, practice and transformation. Characterizing these two words are pioneering thinking, deep listening and exceptional ideas that ultimately have an impact on the entire world

Through this lens, we realized that the program we are curating fits neatly into the teeming space between art and combat. It allows the words to collide and be reflected in each other. The Israel Festival 2023 seeks to put these words in the center, on stage, in the public space, in graphic images, in written texts. To place them as a question, a suggestion, a point of conflict. Plant them and observe with marvel at what happens around them 

Starting August, we will be offering you artistic adventures that, for us, are the clearest remedy to the challenges of the times.  Martial | Art

 Michal Vaknin and Itai Mautner, Artistic Directors

Eyal Sher, General Director

The Israel Festival Team

The Israel Festival was founded by the late Aaron Zvi Propes. The Festival is supported by the Ministry of Culture and Sport, the Jerusalem Municipality, the Jerusalem Foundation, embassies, private and public foundations and corporate partners. 

Eyal Sher, General Director | Michal Vaknin and Itay Mautner, Artistic Directors | Ori Vaknin,  Chief Producer | Itamar Bernstein, Production Manager| | Saar Gamzo, Communication | Gideon Berger, Marketing Director & Sales Director | Eiv Kristal, Programme Manager and Artists Relations | Yael Gershon, | Meital Izbitsky, Production Coordinator | Martin Cantor, Technical Advisor| Meirav Dadash, Production Coordinator
Dina Ashkenazi, Accountant | Liora Mesilati, Marketing & Sales Manager

Board Members: Adv. Inbar Afek, Chairwoman | Idit Amichay | Avi Balashnikov | Adv. Imry Ben-Ami | Adv. Gil Brandes | Orly Doron | Dr. Tal Kohavi | Yossi Lubaton | Hedai Ofaimme | Adv. Iris Pappo | Adv. Asaf Shariv | Anat Turbowicz | Mishael Vaknin
Observer: Anat Gilead
Audit Committee: Prof. Leah Achdut | Adv. Ruth Horn

PR: Lapidot Public Relations – Ora Lapidot, Adi Tzoref-Feldman
Graphic Design: Nomi Geiger, Studio Gimel2 & Shay Cotani
Website: R2K – Rotem Tal, Khalil Jarban
Digital & Social Media: 6 Degs – Eyal Bason
Content Writing: Itay Mautner, Saar Gamzo
Copy Editor: Gal Kusturica
English Translation: Sharon Assaf
Arabic Translation: Anwar Ben Badis
Tickets: Eventer
CPA: Avraham Bechar & Co.
Internal Auditor: Michael Gal, CPA
Legal Counsel: Adv. Tamar Fineberg

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