The first Israeli production of Billy Elliot the Musical (BETM) opened at the 870 seat City Hall Theatre at Cinema City Ramat HaSharon, in northern Tel Aviv on June 1, 2016. This was the first time that BETM had been performed in Hebrew.
The production has also had limited runs at two other venues – the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center in Tel Aviv (Aug 14 – Sep 2, 2016) and the Mozkin Theatre in Haifa (Dec 16-22, 2016). The show then continued back at its original venue. It was announced in March 2017 that after almost a year of performances, the final show would be on April 7, 2017.
This production is the culmination of two years of preparation, and according to Eldar Groisman, the choreographer and director for the Tel Aviv production, “is the work of a group of dreamers who invested a lot of money in the project, and they deserve a lot of respect”. Eli Bizawii, who translated the script into Hebrew, said this about the musical’s relevance to an Israeli audience, “I am convinced that the distance between the coal miners’ strike and our problems here will only make the message shine through. I am sure that the audience will be able to make the connection and relate to the story.”
In March 2016, the Tel Aviv company hosted an open rehearsal in order to introduce their cast to the public. This video clip, taken at the event, shows the cast performing excerpts from some of the major numbers in the show:
Credit: Video by עכבר העיר
The official trailer for the production was released in June 2016, and includes footage from the show itself:
Credit: Video by בילי אליוט המחזמר
The Tel Aviv cast was originally led by two boys who were both new to the role of Billy Elliot. They are Arnon Herring and Shon Granot Zilbershtein. Shon finished his run as Billy in February 2017, so Arnon is currently the only the only Billy in this production.
To see a complete listing of the rest of the Tel Aviv cast, just click on the Cast Information button.
Credit: Photo by Billy Elliot the Musical IL