The Cameri Theatre, Tel Aviv municipal theatre, was founded in 1944. It is considered the largest and most prolific theatre in Israel. Each year the Cameri stages up to twelve new productions, together with twenty productions from previous seasons. The theatre is located in the center of Tel Aviv. All the productions run there in its 5 auditoriums. The Cameri also has a touring company that brings its productions to the periphery, throughout Israel.
The Cameri auditoriums: Cameri 1 with 960 seats; Cameri 2 with 420 seats; Cameri 3 with 270 seats; Cameri 4 with 180 seats; and Café teatron with 120 seats.
Performances run every day throughout the year, usually in all the auditoriums. The Cameri Theater has 40,000 yearly subscriptions (A subscription includes tickets for seven productions per year). The total number of box office tickets sold per year comes to 1,150,000 and the total number of performances, including performances out of Tel Aviv, comes to 2100 per year. The theatre repertory includes four categories:
1. Original Israeli drama
2. Classical drama: including recently the project of Richard The Second and Richard The Third that won Best Production of the Year, Hamlet (in a small hall of 200 seats) with 1000 performances since its premiere in 2005, Romeo and Juliet, Comedy of Errors, Macbeth by Shakespeare, Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond rostand, Electra and Antigona by Sophocles , and others.
3. Modern drama: including plays by Tennesse Williams, Arthur Miller, Tom
Stoppard, Christopher Durang and Tadeusz Slobodjanek,
4. Musicals: including in recent years: The Producers, Fiddler on The Roof, Cabaret, and Something Funny Happened on the Way to the Forum. Soon we will also have Hair and Bullets Above Broadway.
Throughout the years, The Cameri Theatre has been invited to some of the leading theatres and theatre festivals world wide, among them: BAM in NY with Israeli drama, The Barbican in London with Plonter (a special collaboration of Arab and Jewish actors), Hannover Expo , Washington Shakespeare Festival at The Kennedy Center, and Gdansk Shakespeare Festival with Hamlet, National Center for the Performing Arts (The Egg) in Beijing, Moscow Theatre of Nations with Hamlet, and to more than 50 other international tours with other productions.
The Cameri Theatre hosts yearly international theatre festivals that recently
included: Robert Wilson, Three Penny Opera and Arturo Ui from the Berliner Ensemble, The Volksbuhne, The Schaubuhne, The Deutsches Theatre from Berlin, The National Theatre of Norway, The National Theatre of The Czech Republic, The Public Theatre, New York, and more than 70 other theatres from all over the world. The Cameri international collaborations recently included a co-production of Euripedes, Trojan Women with Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre directed by Yukio Ninagawa, with a mixed cast of Arab, Jewish, and Japanese actors. This year we celebrate Shakespeare 450 anniversary with an International festival.
The Cameri's productions have accumulated more than 120 awards, including the most coveted Israel Prize for Lifetime Achievement and Special Contribution to Society and the State of Israel. This year, The Cameri Theatre received Honorary Fellowship of Tel Aviv University for its singular contribution over seven decades to enhancing Israeli culture, for its rich repertory, and for nurturing excellence in all aspects of theatrical performance.
Noam Semel, General Director of The Cameri Theatre since 1992, is also the founder and director of The Institute of Israeli drama and of its publishing house. Mr. Semel led the move of The Cameri Theatre to its new large complex of today. Mr. Semel is also the founder of The Peace Fund that brings Palestinian Youth to the theatre. Before coming to The Cameri, Mr. Semel was the Cultural Consul of Israel in New York for four years, and later, the General Director of Haifa Municipal Theatre.
Mr. Nitzan, Artistic Director of The Cameri Theatre, is a prodigious director himself in both theatre and opera. Mr. Nitzan accumulated many prizes for his productions that include classical and contemporary drama. Among the prizes he won are: five time winner of the Israel Theatre Prize for Director of the Year, five time winner of the Israeli Theatre Prize for Production of the Year. Mr. Nitzan directed Operas in The Israel Opera, in Antwerpen and in Tokyo. Operas he directed were guests performances in The Opera of Rome, the Deutsches Opera Berlin, and The Opera Festival in Wiesbaden, Germay.
The Institute of Israeli drama, founded by Noam Semel, promotes Israeli drama throughout the world in more than 20 languages. Festivals of Israeli drama take place in leading theatres internationally, and in Israel, once a year, the Institute launches Isradrama – a showcase of Israeli drama presented to theatre professionals from all over the world.
Under the leadership of Mr. Semel, The Cameri Theatre adopted Itim Theatre, Israel leading experimental theatre, directed by Rina Yerushalmi. The Theatre has accumulated many awards for its productions and participated in leading international festivals.
The Cameri Archive contains the production books of all past productions with additional dramaturgical material for the use of theatre professionals and students.