Talbiya, 20 Marcus st.

About the project

The Jerusalem Center for the Performing Arts, known locally as the Jerusalem Theater, is a major arts complex and one of the city’s most prestigious cultural venues. The center began with construction of the 950-seat Sherover Theater designed by architect Michael Nadler in 1971. Construction of a new wing that includes the Henry Crown Symphony Hall, the Rebecca Crown Auditorium and the Little Theater was completed in 1986. The center also includes a bookshop, a cafeteria, a restaurant, art galleries, and a large outdoor plaza. It has no repertory companies of its own, but rather hosts top local and foreign music, dance and theater productions. The Jerusalem Foundation’s first project at the center was the mounting of a photography exhibit in one of the the theater’s galleries in 1975. It created the Zvi Leibowitz Garden in memory of the Foundation’s engineer near the box office in 1977. It’s primary involvement was construction of the 750-seat Henry Crown Symphony Hall, the permanent home of the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra, and the 450-seat Rebecca Crown Auditorium, a hall for experimental theater, dance and musical performances in 1986. The Foundation has since supported numerous renovation projects at the halls, including improvements to the entrance, chairs and acoustics, the purchase of equipment, such as earphones for the hearing impaired,and numerous activities, including performance subsidies, exhibits, festivals and performances. Completion of the center was one of then-Mayor Teddy Kollek’s proudest achievements: “It had been started in the former city administration but was abandoned because they didn’t have the money to finish. I remember when we started, we had a concert in a hole in the ground and brought the Israel Philharmonic there.”

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