London Activists Disrupt Israeli Theater Production

By JTA

Published May 29, 2012.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Pro-Palestinian activists protested against an Israeli theater company’s production of The Merchant of Venice at the Globe Theater in London.

Monday night’s protests began outside the theater where dozens stood waving Palestinian flags and calling for a boycott of Israeli products, according to reports. Pro-Israeli activists mounted a counter-demonstration.

Inside the theater, Palestinian protesters during the performance began waving Palestinian flags and flashing signs against Israel. They were removed from the theater. The actors continued with the show.

Ticket holders had been warned not to bring extra bags and underwent extensive checks before they were allowed to enter the theater.

The Hebrew production is part of the Globe to Globe festival, a six-week festival at the Globe featuring Shakespeare’s 37 plays performed in 37 languages. A Palestinian theater company was scheduled to perform “Richard II” in Arabic.

In an open letter published March 29 in The Guardian, three dozen British directors, writers and actors expressed “dismay and regret” about the production.

Habima “has a shameful record of involvement with illegal Israeli settlements in Occupied Palestinian Territory,” the letter said, citing the fact that the company has agreed to perform in the culture centers of two large Israeli settlements and threatened repercussions against any actors or directors who decide out of conscience not to perform there.

“By inviting Habima, Shakespeare’s Globe is undermining the conscientious Israeli actors and playwrights who have refused to break international law,” the letter said. In September anti-Israel protesters disrupted a live BBC broadcast of the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra in London’s Albert Hall as part of the BBC Proms summer classical music festival.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • “I don’t want to say, ‘Oh oh, I’m not Jewish,’ because when you say that, you sound like someone trying to get into a 1950s country club, “and I love the idea of being Jewish." Are you a fan of Seth Meyers?
  • "If you want my advice: more Palestinians, more checkpoints, just more reality." What do you think?
  • Happy birthday Barbra Streisand! Our favorite Funny Girl turns 72 today.
  • Clueless parenting advice from the star of "Clueless."
  • Why won't the city give an answer?
  • BREAKING NEWS: Israel has officially suspended peace talks with the Palestinians.
  • Can you guess what the most boring job in the army is?
  • What the foolish rabbi of Chelm teaches us about Israel and the Palestinian unity deal:
  • Mazel tov to Idina Menzel on making Variety "Power of Women" cover! http://jd.fo/f3Mms
  • "How much should I expect him and/or ask him to participate? Is it enough to have one parent reciting the prayers and observing the holidays?" What do you think?
  • New York and Montreal have been at odds for far too long. Stop the bagel wars, sign our bagel peace treaty!
  • Really, can you blame them?
  • “How I Stopped Hating Women of the Wall and Started Talking to My Mother.” Will you see it?
  • Taglit-Birthright Israel is redefining who they consider "Jewish" after a 17% drop in registration from 2011-2013. Is the "propaganda tag" keeping young people away?
  • Happy birthday William Shakespeare! Turns out, the Bard knew quite a bit about Jews.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.