«The Politics and Poetics of Contemporary Theatre»


“Evaluating a new play as a theatrical text”

A Translation, Dramaturgy, Direction Masterclass

In collaboration with the International Playwrights’ Forum IPF -International Theatre Institute ITI Unesco.

Conducted by Professor Gad Kaynar-Kissinger

President of IPF/ITI Unesco

21-23 September 2018

Municipal Τheatre of Piraeus

Athens, Greece

This tryout workshop in the context of the Analogio Festival in Athens 2018 is a new way of exposing an unknown dramatic text, not merely as literary drama, but as a live theatrical text, open to variable interpretations and conceptions, both on the verbal level – subject to various translations (in case of a foreign play) – and on the staging level – given to a several directing and acting approaches, including inter-cultural and multi-medial. In this manner, the merits of the play, not merely as reading material, but as a holistic actable piece that evokes interactive relations with a number of possibilities to interpret, direct, design and lighten it, to set music and sound to it, etc., will be explored. In a world in which not only material goods and information travel fast, but also cultural assets, it is important to test the universal value of a play, its capability to be adapted to differing cultural contexts of production and reception.

Α pilot workshop based exclusively on the Israeli play Shavua [A Week] – «Seven Days», by Shlomi Moskovitz.

The play will be presented in three different versions (three workshops) in English language.

The workshop consists of 4 stages. Part of the work: in pre-workshop phase.

  1. Stage 1 (early pre-festival stage): The choice and translation of the plays
  2. Stage 2 (festival phase): Reading the Full Plays
  3. Stage 3 (festival phase): Performing optional interpretations.
  4. Stage 4 (conclusive discussions): Round table

Artistic Director of Masterclass: Prof. Gad Kaynar-Kissinger

Initiators: Prof. Gad Kaynar-Kissinger & Sissy Papathanassiou

Translator: Tzina Karvounaki


Workshop Gad Kaynar-Kissinger:

Actors: Amalia Arseni, Menelaos Kyparissis, Katerina Daliani, Spiros-Andreas Papadatos, Kostas Geradonis

Workshop Anastasia Koumidou (director):

Actors: Giorgos Bakalos, Chrysanthi Georgantidou, Nina Toumazatou

Workshop Despina Gatziou (director):

Actors: Stathis Grapsas, Melissanthi Mahout, Arabella Ross

Masterclass “Seven Days” PRESENTATION: Sunday 23 September (11:00-14:00)

Venue: Municipal Τheatre of Piraeus

Sunday 23 September (15:00-17:00): ROUND TABLE «On translation, evaluation and direction of a new play».

Participants: Gad Kaynar-Kissinger, Shlomi Moskovitz, Kakumoto Atsushi, Sissy Papathanassiou, Octavian Saiu, Nikos Diamantis, Despina Gantzou, Anastasia Koumidou, Eleftheria Raptou. Welcome speach, Dimitris Sevastakis, MP President of the Parliamentary Greece – Israel friendship group, Ad. Prof. NTUA.

Venue: Municipal Τheatre of Piraeus

“Seven Days” by Shlomi Moskovitz


Netta, a sophisticated high school pupil, initiates the process of dismantling her family through her provocative interpretation of the biblical Genesis Myth. Her purpose in doing so is to return her mother, Tamar, an author who writes to the drawer, to the bosom of her mythological ex-lover, the poet Emanuel, who appears like some James Dean, a super-hero of modern screen legends, riding on his motorcycle, as the knight of the family’s Apocalypse and Resurrection.

Framing the family plot in the structure of the mythical Creation Week’s narrative is designed to reify that the play is about a process: This is no realistic week, but a chain of stages in an emotional development the leads to a turning point, a reversal, both a Peripeteia and Anagnorisis.

The dramatis personae are expelled from the bourgeois Garden of Eden of the family that has been based on false foundations, in order to gain, each of them in his or her own way, a spiritual rebirth towards a new life.

On the First Day: Each one of the four characters is submerged in its plight, isolated in its own world. From each of their streams-of-consciousness rises a cry to heaven, a plea for correction, for inner-acceptance.

Second Day: Emanuel, Tamar’s ex-lover, arrives at her home. He meets her 18 years old daughter, Netta. Sexual tension builds up between them. Tamar is scared by the comeback of Emanuel into her life, yet admits that this is what she, in her innermost, yearned for. Yotam, Tamar’s husband, feels that the ground is shaking under his feet.

Third Day: Tamar confronts her husband, Yotam. Emanuel find out that Tamar is still writing, even though she hasn’t yet published a thing.

Fourth Day: The conflict comes to a head. Netta begins to understand the price that she will pay for breaking up her family. Tamar resumes her sensual and creative discourse from the past with Emanuel.

Fifth Day: Tamar wants to depart from her husband, Yotam. He refuses to let her go. Netta understands that she has to help the lovers to reunite despite the painful personal sacrifice that she and her father would have to make.

Sixth Day: Tamar breaks down. Incapable of carrying out her decision. Emanuel, the avowed atheist, has to recruit God in order to convince her. Netta starts the tormenting process of parting. She supports her father and defends him, and for a time becomes the “responsible adult”.

Seventh Day: The question arises: Is this romantic, “nietzschean” play that embodies the belief in the organic forces of Creation that evolve out of chaos, from the depths of the drives and the libido, from where the conventional Morality and Ratio have failed, is abstract and naïve, or that there is a real, sustainable possibility for another kind of authentic and harmonious Life.

Gad Kaynar-Kissinger

President of the Israeli I.T.I. Centre. He is a Hon. Associate Professor at Tel Aviv University, where he also served as Chair of the Theatre Arts Department.  He has been Visiting Professor at Hebrew, Munich LMU, and Venice International Universities. Recent publications include: Another View: Israeli Drama Revisited with Zahava Caspi (Ben Gurion University Publication, 2013); The Cameri Theatre of Tel-Aviv (Cameri Theatre, 2008); Habima: New Insights on National Theatre, as co-editor (Resling, 2017).  Kaynar has also conceived chapters in The Oxford Handbook of Jewish Studies (Oxford UP, 2002), The Routledge Companion to Dramaturgy (Routledge,2015) and New Dramaturgies: International Perspectives (Methuen, 2014).

Kaynar is co-editor of the quarterly Teatron. He has curated several monodrama and Israeli Drama Showcase festivals in Israel and abroad, served as the dramaturg of the three major Israeli theatres (Habima National Theatre, The Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv and the Khan Theatre in Jerusalem),and of productions in Germay and Austria. He is active as actor and director on Israeli stages, in film and TV.  Kaynar is a drama translator from English, German, Norwegian and Swedish. For his Ibsen translations and research, he was declared in 2009 “Knight First Class of the Royal Norwegian Order of Merit”.

Kaynar Kissinger’s credits as director include: G. Kaynar, “The Leaning Tower”, Tzavta Theatre, 1972; Sophocles, “Antigone”, Tel Aviv College, 1974; G. Kaynar, “The Poem of the Rosenwald Institute”, The Nissan Nativ Studio, 1979; Bertolt Brecht, “A Children’s Crusade”, The Telma Yelin School for the Arts, 1980; “The Apology of Socrates” – a monodrama, performed by the leading actor of the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv at the Knesset, The Israeli Parliament; “What is Theatre”-An Educational Performance of the National Theatre “Habima”, 1998; Samy Groenemann, “The Heine Family”, “Habima” and “The Heine in Jerusalem Conference”, 2001;  Sarah Kane, “Blasted”, Tzavta 2 Theatre, 2003; George Tabori, “The Goldberg Variations”, The Tel Aviv University Theatre, 2004; J. P. Sartre, “The Trojan Women”, The Tel Aviv University Theatre, 2005; Lukas Bärfuss, “The Sexual Neuroses of Our Parents”, Tmu-Na Theatre, 2012; Directing the workshops “personalization of Power”, “Burn the Libraries”, and “Apocalypse” at the Venice International University, 2017-2018; Else Lasker-Schüler, staged reading of Ichundich, Tel Aviv University, 2018.

Kaynar translated, directed and acted in over 25 German and English radio-plays for the Israeli Broadcasting Station in the 1970s and 1980s.

As Secretary General and President of the ITI Israeli Centre, and lately as the newly elected Chairman of the IPF (International Playwrights Forum of the ITI), Kaynar has been conducive in promoting joint workshops of Israeli Jewish and Palestinian actors through the “My Unknown Enemy” project, as well as in fostering ties with representatives of Arab and other countries that have no diplomatic relations with Israel both in the Turin meeting of the Mediterranean Centres (2007) and throughout the years (in meetings of the IPF, Monodrama and Human Rights Committees). He fACIfA He facilitated the overseas participation of Israeli theatre artists in international workshops in various performative fields, and encouraged the attendance and artistic contribution of young Israeli practitioners at the ExCom. He initiated the “Earth Festival”, and the “10 Minutes  Plays Competition” (2016/17), as well as an inter-medial Conference on the famous Jewish-German poet, Else Lasker-Schüler, as dramatist (Tel Aviv University, 2018). He initiated and conducts the “Play-Tryout Workshop” in the framework of the Analogio Festival 2018.

Shlomi Moskovitz

Playwright “SEVEN DAYS”

Born in 1961. Bachelor of Arts degree from the Tel Aviv University School of Theater majored in acting and direction. Playwright, scriptwriter and director, whose works include:

Writer for the theater: A Brief Trip Abroad, Hasimta Theater, 1990. A Motorcycle Trip, Haifa Theater, 1994. An Integral Portion, The Yoram Levenstein Drama Studio. Together with Gil Kopatsch, 1997. Luna, The Yoram Levenstein Drama Studio, 1999. Seven days, Habima Theatre, 2003. Kochav yair, Habima Theatre, ‏2010. They Shut horses don’t they? Hakameri theater, 2013. The ten commandments, Kiel Theater, 2016. A Tasting meal, Ηakameri Theater, 2016. Just love, Hakameri Theater, 2017.

Theater director: “The Terrible Days of Boaz”, A.B. Yehoshua, Akko Festival, 1986. “Louise”, Hasimta Theater, 1987. “Four Cups of Tea and Half a Cup of Water’’, Hasimta Theater, 1989. Nighttime Wanderings, Israel Festival, 1992, Second prize. Women at Night, Seminar Hakibbutzim College.

Translator: A lie of the mind (Sam Shepard), The Vagina monologues (Eve Ensler), Boy gets girl (Rebeka Gilman), Everybody loves opal (John Patrick), Death of a salesman (Arthur Miller), Uncle Vanya (Chechov) and more than 40 other plays for “Habima” and “Beit Lessin” Theatres.

Writer for television: Regular writer for the skit and satire program “Zehu Zeh” (94-97). Creator of and writer for the series “The Pole is in our Hands”. Creator and writer of the sitcom “Shtok Show”. Writer of “The Portion of the Week with Gil Kopatsch”. The opening dialogue for Avraham and Ya’akov. The People of the Year – Rami Hoiberger, Dov Navon and Ya’el Bar Zohar, Keshet Broadcasting, 1999. Episodes for the drama series “Florentine”.

In addition, he is writer and director of a series of concerts for the whole family with the Habama orchestra and the Philharmonic Orchestra, under the management of Roni Porat.

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