Israeli actor, director and professor Roy Horovitz brings drama to Pittsburgh
Classrooms Without Borders facilitates arrival of Israeli talent
Roy Horovitz, an Israeli actor, director and dramaturg, is treating Pittsburghers to a series of presentations and performances.
Between Feb. 11-16, Horovitz will meet with students from Pittsburgh Creative and Performing Arts and Carnegie Mellon University, as well as scholars and community members.
Speaking by phone from Tel Aviv, Horovitz said he’s eager to visit Pittsburgh and work with so many people here: “I hope it will be the beginning of a wonderful friendship.”
Horovitz’s trip is sponsored by Classrooms Without Borders.
Tsipy Gur, CWB’s founder and executive director, said she’s delighted for Pitttsburghers to learn from Horovitz.
“He has an ability to stimulate a diverse audience and can connect with high school students, adults and professors,” she said. Given Horovitz’s expertise in Holocaust and Israeli theater, “he can reach out to many different populations.”
Horovitz is well known throughout the Jewish state. In addition to working with the Habimah National Theatre and the Beer Sheva Theatre, he is a senior lecturer in the Department of Comparative Literature at Bar-Ilan University and teaches courses on modern interpretations of the Bible on the stage, contemporary trends in Israeli theater and the preoccupation of Israeli playwrights with the Holocaust.
Horovitz will address the latter during a Feb. 15 program at CMU. Along with exploring the aesthetic and ethical challenges of addressing the Shoah, Horovitz will perform several rehearsed readings before students from CMU’s School of Drama.
Those interested in seeing more of the Israeli talent are encouraged to attend a Feb. 12 free performance at Rodef Shalom Congregation in Shadyside. During the Sunday afternoon show, Horovitz will present “My First Sony,” an award-winning monodrama based on Benny Barbash's bestseller of the same name.
The story, Horovitz said, follows a “bittersweet family drama told from the point of view of an 11-year-old.”
In playing 11-year-old Yotam, as well as a slew of other friends and relatives, Horovitz shares the humor and pain of a young Israeli boy who chronicles life via a tape recorder.
Horovitz has performed the one-man show throughout the United States since 1996.
After so many years of sharing the play with audiences worldwide, Horovitz said he’s looking forward to bringing it to Pittsburgh. The show will mark the first time since the start of the pandemic that he’s performing the work.
“I’ve been familiar with it for over 25 years, and it still moves me very much,” he said.
Barb Feige, Rodef Shalom’s executive director, said in a statement that the congregation is pleased to host “My First Sony,” and that the performance is “both thought-provoking and moving.”
Between “My First Sony” and the scheduled workshops with high school and college students, Gur said, Horovitz’s visit offers Pittsburghers a chance to encounter the magnificence and depth of Israeli theater.
“He is giving us a wonderful way to learn,” she said.
Information about Horovitz’s visit, and registration for “My First Sony,” is available at classroomswithoutborders.org. PJC
Adam Reinherz can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.