Zelda Harris
Zelda Harris
Five on the 100 aliyah from UK list!

To see or not to see!

No pun intended! If you get the opportunity to go to see “Bli Ayin HaRa” the new production of the Nephesh Theatre in Tel Aviv, you will enjoy a superb theatrical experience which eclipses the basic of all human feelings.

I believe that I have been privileged to attend most of the productions of this unique company Nephesh, which was started in Toronto by a young man called Howard Rypp. Their very first play in Israel was performed at the impressive Cultural Centre in Netanya in 1978. It was called the “Irish- Hebrew lesson” also a unique play.

I and a bunch of dedicated new immigrants together with our late and former President, Chaim Herzog were founders of an Amuta(voluntary organisation) known as CCC-Committee of Concerned Citizens. We were active in trying to change the Electoral System in Israel. Herzog and other veritable citizens believed that there should be a system in which, the elected MK would directly represent the voter and therefore be accountable.

When Howard, a new immigrant and close friend of my son Peter, told us that he would be putting on the play in English and so English Speakers would be the target audience, I replied “no problem”. The Anglo’s as we were known, were a close-knit and yet very active voluntary force in the community. Since many of them were not completely fluent in Ivrit, they were also starved of theatre.
We pulled 600 people into that event.

“Without the Evil Eye” is one of the most unique productions I have ever seen. One is drawn into a world which exists around us and of which we understand little. The audience almost holds their breath, lest they disturb the solo performer.

I do not know when there will be further performances but as the expression goes “If you only see one play this year make it “Bli Ayin Haraa!” The solo actor Assaf Ben Shimon is magic.

About the Author
Zelda Harris first came to Israel 1949, aged 18. After living through the hardships of the nascent state, she returned to England in 1966. She was a founding member of the Women's Campaign for Soviet Jewry. In 1978, she returned with her family to Israel and has been active in various spheres of Israeli Society since. Together with the late Chaim Herzog, she founded CCC for Electoral Reform, was the Director of BIPAC in Israel, and a co-founder of Metuna, the Organisation for Road Safety, which received the Speaker of Knesset Quality of Life Award for saving lives on the roads and prevention of serious injury. She is now a peace activist, blogger for Times of Israel and is writing her life story.