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Controversial Play ‘censored’

The premier performance of “One City–Something About Jerusalem” ended 20 minutes earlier than expected Tuesday night with the actors announcing that the controversial play had been “censored.” The censorship claim appears to refer to several cuts made jointly by the play’s researchers, journalists Matti Golan and Dan Margalit of Haaretz. and the theater’s board of directors.

The play, which caused an uproar when shown to a preview audience earlier last month, was written on the basis of the interviews compiled by the two journalists. According to the two. the director, Michael Alfreds, interpreted the play too freely by depicting Israel as a harsh occupying power which did not fit in with their original material. They also claimed the version shown on the stage added scenes which were historically incorrect.

Alfreds said the two journalists gave him a large number of interviews from which he was to select the ones appropriate for the stage for a dramatic presentation of Jerusalem’s current problems. He said that Golan and Margalit followed the work on the play and there was no reason for them to be surprised at the outcome. Alfreds rejected accusations of censorship or excess editing on his part He said he used his legitimate judgement.

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