Yinon Tzafrir – Artistic Director
Yinon founded ORTO-Da Theatre Group in 1996 as the first social theatre group in Israel, he is a groundbreaking professional in his field and a social leader. Yinon works as director, artistic director of festivals, acting tutor and performer.
Date of birth: 19 July 1968.
Birthplace: Tel Aviv, Israel.
Meaning of name: The name of the Messiah’s messenger in the Yom Kippur prayer: “Yinon and Eliya I send thee”. As a verb, the meaning of the name is “Forever be remembered”.
Eye colour: Blue.
Marital status: Married to the dramaturge Yifat Tzafrir (see below), they have a daughter named Tohar.
Yinon loves: Court jesters, writing songs, reading, bringing the dead back to life, surfing and eating fish.
Yinon hates: Capitalist men, capitalist women, politicians and people who think they’re clever.
Favourite colour: Blue.
Blood type: O
Yinon believes: Human history is a film by a drunk director, a megalomaniac screenwriter and a photographer with a chronic eye infection.
YInon grew up in Tel Aviv Hill Square, in an apartment building occupied by veteran Habima and Cameri theater actors lived, and already as a child he was in the presence of great Israeli theater personalities such as Shimon Bar, of the theater quartet, Rachel Marcus the wife of Natan Alterman, Yossi Banai and more.
In 1986, he graduated from the Ironi H. High School, where he participated in theater performances (the theater department had not yet opened at the school).
After serving in the IDF, Air Force he was admitted to the Beit Zvi High School of Performing Arts and graduated in 1993.
Since then, he has participated as a repertoire actor in many plays in various theaters in Israel.
At the same time, Yinon Tzafrir continued to learn and to hone his skills as an actor and director with leading artists in Israel and abroad:
- Graduate of the Concentrated Track for Performing Arts and Screen – Acting and Directing at the Room Theater,
- Graduate of an extended course of acting in front of a camera by Ruth Dykes.
- Directing course: John Right, England.
- Street theater: Natural Theater Company, England.
- Theater Clowning: Alex Navarro, Spain.
- Postmodern Directing: Krzysztof Warlikowski, Poland.
- The Naive Clown: Angela de Castro, Brazil.
- The Eccentric Clown: The Extreme Avner, USA
- Choreography: Angelica Liddell, Spain
- The Crazy Clown: Linda Der Scot, England
- Melodrama Course: Philip Golye, France
- The Creator: Marcello Magny, Italy
- The Tragedy State of the Clown: Gabriel Chame, Argentina
Professional experience as an actor:
Habima Theater: The Obsessed, The Brave Soldier Shvik
Mayumana – the show for children
Gesher Theater – “Metrabin” – First Prize Acre 99
Tzavta – the immigrants, “Shringra”.
The Alley Theater – The Upper, “If Potential”, my former eternal wife.
The “Library” Theater – War Games.
The “Room” Theater – Blood.
Children and Youth Plays: “Galileo”, “Show” Theater, “Popto” – International Festival of Children’s Plays, Haifa. “Bilby”.
TV and movies: “Twenty Plus”, “Yosef Kimchi”, “Zoom”.
Yinon is an excellent teacher of the method of acting he instilled in the Orto-Da Theater, based on street theater and the open circle.
He taught acting at Sharon Alexander’s school, at the Room Theater, and at the Orto-Da Theater, and currently at the Manshar undergraduate school at the Tel Aviv Academy of Performing Arts, and gives courses and master workshops of the Orto-Da method through-out the world.
Since 1996, Yinon Tzafrir has been the artistic director and founder of the Orto-Da theater group, in which he is an active actor, creator, playwright and director.
Yinon Tzafrir is considered a pioneer in Israel in the field of open-air street theater.
Since 2012, the “Orto-Da” group, led by Yinon Tzafrir, has been the artistic director of the open- air theater complex at the Haifa International Festival of Children’s Plays.
It is worth noting that Yinon Tzafrir is considered to be a medical wonder, as he suffers from bone disease that causes the doubling of tissue and restriction of movement. Despite and perhaps even because of the disease, the artist developed a unique body and movement language, which are sometimes included in the works of the Orto-Da group. The group’s works are displayed at festivals, theater halls, street performances – in Israel and around the world – and are highly regarded.
Yinon Tzafrir’s works as creator and director:
Winner of the “Best Show” award, at the Acre Festival, 1999.
Performed at the HaSimta and the Gesher theaters in Tel Aviv Israel and
– Selected to represent Israel with the support of Keshutam at the festival: – CHALON DANS LA RUE 2000, in France
– Varazdin Croatia 2002,
– Ptuj Slovenia 2004.
Winner of first prize at the 2005 Bat Yam Festival.
Invited since the summer of 2006 to open official international festivals in Belgium, the Netherlands, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Brazil, France, the United States, England, China, etc. totaling more than 300 performances including before ambassador’s, mayors and governments throughout the world.
– In 2007, “Stones” won three international awards:
In Spain: 2 Awards – Audience Choice Award and Artistic Committee Ciudad Rodrigo Spain 2007.
In Germany: In the state of Westphalia – one of the ten best shows in the world.
– In 2008 the show won two more awards:
Perfection Award at the Festival, PUF Paula Croatia 2008,
Golden Hedgehog Award 2008 for set design.
– In 2010, the play won four awards by Asitz:
- Award for Best Interdisciplinary Performance,
- The choreography
- Design of dolls and accessories
“To be or not?“:
The show “To Be or Not?” – Hamlet on the Street was presented at the 2002 Acre Festival and was described by spectators and critics as unusual, important and fascinating and was performed at a Hebrew-Arab theater in Jaffa, appearing now as “Monkey Business Game”.
Via Dolorosa Now:
In 2010, Yinon Tzafrir created the work “Via Dolorosa Now” as an international project in collaboration with the Dr. INAT Theater Group from Croatia. The work was performed at the 2010 Acre Street Theater complex and appears today under the name
“Monkey Business Game”
“Ma’apilim” – Bat Yam Festival 1997, Acre Festival 1997.
“The Soldiers in Diapers” – Rabin Square, 1996
“PartiZen” – First Prize, Bat-Yam Festival, 2005
“Ungrateful” – Tel Aviv (Street Show), 2001
“Insanity-Electronic Spoken Opera” – Jaffa Harbor, HaTeiva Theater