One of our earliest projects is the theatre centre in the forest of Sha’ar LaAdam-Bab L’ilInsan. For more than fifteen years, Sha’ar LaAdam-Bab L’ilInsan has brought together Jewish and Arab youth - and occasionally participants from Europe - to participate in a shared theatre program. We have played in multiple languages (the 2020 Middle East Side Story, an adaption of West Side Story, in Hebrew, Arabic and German) sometimes touring in Europe with the productions and hosting young Europeans to perform with us in Galilee. It is our belief that by providing a communal program on a neutral platform, individuals can connect at an interpersonal level through artistic expression. The theatre program is a creative place for a meeting between cultures, and fosters intercultural exchange through the creation of a shared initiative.
The theatre centre aims to develop a deep process of group bonding, cooperation and social connections between students; bridging the rift between the Jewish and Arab communities within Israel by facilitating a common course to unite youth in one educational stream. This course was built from the belief that drama, also known as the art of conversation, can form the ground for an empowering encounter between youth. Recognised as a matriculation certificate course by the Ministry of Education, the program is run for students from the tenth to twelfth grade, and consists of theoretical and practical lessons, artistic projects and activities which culminate in the final play performed in English around Israel and in Europe by the students at the end of their three-year course.
Additionally, the theatre is a central common area for all projects and activities in the volunteering communities of Sha’ar LaAdam-Bab L’ilInsan, with each volunteer cohort performing a coexistence play in the three local languages of Hebrew, Arabic and English for the wider community to enjoy together, regardless of languages spoken, or cultural origin.