Light in a black box: black theater IMAGE from Prague in Israel

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 Light in a black box: black theater IMAGE from Prague in Israel< /p>

IMAGE – black light theater, or simply black theater, is returning to Israel this spring. Spectators will again be able to see the wonders that the famous troupe from Prague creates literally before our eyes – “Black Theater IMAGE – Prague Shadow Theatre”. The performances, which will take place in Israel from March 17 to April 1, are intended for the whole family and are made up of both brand new and the best numbers that have appeared over the years of the Image group's existence. The new program is called The Best of The Best of IMAGE.

Remember: how to find a cat in a black room? The human eye is not able to distinguish black on black – this is the first principle on which black light theater is based. This effect has been used since antiquity, especially in Japan and China, where jugglers and puppeteers were dressed in black. The black box trick has already been used in the theater (Konstantin Stanislavsky) and in the cinema (Georges Méliès and the French avant-garde artists) in our time.

The second principle is that if you shine ultraviolet rays on fluorescent objects, they become brighter than actually exist. Thus, in one place it is possible to “hide” in black and highlight others.

Since the late fifties of the last century, the genre has developed. The Czech director, playwright, designer, composer and set designer Jiří Srnec created the world's first Black Theater using a “black box” in combination with spotlights with ultraviolet lamps, velvet as the most light-absorbing material. All together gave extraordinary opportunities: “flights” actors through the air, objects appearing from nowhere, fantastic creatures, etc.

Since 1959, when Jiří Srnec introduced the theater to the general public, Prague has become the world center of this amazing genre. Today, about 10 troupes work here. One of the most famous is the black theater IMAGE.

IMAGE was founded by dancer Eva Asterova and Alexander Chigarzh in 1989. They decided to form an independent theater troupe based on a synthesis of black light theater, dance, modern jazz, music and pantomime. Their main idea was to make a theater where the audience is surprised, enjoys the wonderful music and dances, and also laughs. Eva and Alexander brought a choreographic component, humor and play with the audience to the existing genre. The audience often becomes a part of the performance, creating the action together with the actors.

After the very first performance of “Jazzmime Stories”, which premiered in 1990 in a small club near Charles Bridge, the theater became famous. The troupe received an invitation and went on tour to other countries. The performance caused a special delight in Italy. Upon his return, the theater moved to Parizhskaya Street, a stone's throw from the Old Square, where he continued to create not just performances, but also new theatrical directions.

The second performance was the revue Fancy! 1992, in which there was a lot of pantomime, more precisely what is called non-verbal theater. This show has been played over 1000 times! Next were “Night Flight” 1994, and in 1997 the premiere of the performance was held, which was the result of creative searches and inspiration of a whole team of authors: “Professor Prazhak's Cabinet of Curiosities and Miracles”. The audience got into the wonderful world of the scientist and experimenter Professor Prazhak, watched his grotex experiments, and was transferred to virtual worlds. This performance was extremely successful and later its continuation appeared – the Clonarium.

With each new performance, the inventive IMAGE team pushed the boundaries of the genre, coming up with new effects and plots. Over time, performances appeared: «Fiction» about a small person in a big universe, “Black Box” inspired by detective stories, “Studio Clip” parodying horror films, “Afrikania”, a hilarious story of a married couple's exotic journey, “Galaxia” and others.

For more than thirty years of existence, the Prague IMAGE Theater has become an important part of Prague's cultural life. Over 9,000 performances played and two million viewers in 27 years have been played by a small creative team. The largest international companies – Microsoft, Nokia, Volkswagen, Johnson & Johnson, Motorola invited them to perform at their events.

The theater traveled a lot, took part in theater and dance festivals. Israeli audience saw their performance at the dance festival in Karmiel.

In 2016, the theater moved to a new building in the very center of Prague, where there is a spacious hall, the stage is equipped with the most modern equipment. Residents of Prague and tourists love this theater not only for the magic that is invariable here, not only for the high skill of dance and acting. But also for the kind, ironic atmosphere that arises at every performance.
The theater builds special relationships with the public. It is felt in everything. For example, on the website of the theater you can read “instruction for the public”. It also contains the following points:

Please don't shoot the actors and dancers; they do their best.
Clapping the right palm on the left palm causes applause. Left-handed viewers do the opposite. Please do it loudly. The sound produced makes the actors feel good.

The theater hall is not equipped for overnight stays. If you would like to see the next performance, please leave the hall after the performance and contact our box office.

In the bar, which will be open after the performance, you can reflect on what you have experienced with us.

Show “The Best of Image” was originally created specifically for touring: the best excerpts from various productions. But the performance was so loved by the people of Prague that it entered the repertoire and began to appear regularly on the home stage. And then came the sequel, The Best of Image II.
And this year, the theater is bringing to Israel the best of the best, the show “The Best of The Best of IMAGE”, which also includes completely new performances. Wonders of light and shadow, dance, pantomime, fantasy, humor and lyricism come together in these performances, where none is like the other. After all, the audience also participates in the creation of the performance.

Come, the Black Theater IMAGE – Prague Shadow Theater invites you, be our co-authors!

Order tickets https://fgk
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Performance dates:
17.03, 20:30 – Modiin, Gehal a-Tarbut, Modiin Makkabim Reut
18.03, 20:30, Eshkol District Council, Ezorey Eshkol
19.03, 20:30, Herzliya, Herzliya Center for Performing Arts
20.03, 20:30, Beer Sheva, Center for Performing Arts, Room 2
21.03, 20:00, Netanya, Gehal HaTarbut Netanya, Auditorium
22.03, 20:30, Petah Tikva, Gehal HaTarbut
24.03, 20:30, Karmiel, Gehal HaTarbut Karmiel
25.03, 20:00, Haifa, Auditorium Haifa
26.03, 20:30, Tel Aviv, Beit hachayal Tel Aviv
27.03, 20:30, Rehovot, Weizmann Research Center, Michael Sela Auditorium
28.03, 20:30, Ashdod, Ashdod Performing Arts Center
29.03, 20:00, Or Akiva, Gehal HaTarbut Or Akiva
30.03, 20:30, Jerusalem, Jerusalem Theater, Sharover Hall
31.03, 20:30, Kiryat Motzkin, Gehal HaTeatron, Kiryat Motzkin
1.04, 20:30, Rishon LeZion, Gehal Meir Le Tarbut Rishon LeZion

Photos provided by tour organizer – by FGK Production

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