When asked where to find theatre in the nonstop city, Tel Avivians and tourists alike will often answer ‘Suzanne Dellal Centre’ or ‘Habima’ without thinking twice. While it is true that these performing arts centres are a huge contribution to Israeli culture and boast internationally acclaimed names to match, they mask the beauty that comes from Tel Aviv’s more alternative performance spaces. There’s no denying that a Thursday night out in the city that never sleeps is a must, but sometimes a dinner for two at a romantic restaurant in Tel Aviv around Sarona and an indie theater performance at Tzavta provides for a nice change of pace – and much less of a friday morning post-drunk munch hangover. Check out what’s on this month for updates on what to see where. Also, don’t forget to hop over to Jaffa for more alternative performances.
Israeli culture: Tel Aviv's top five alternative performing arts scene
Over the years, the theatre has welcomed all independent performances that don’t quite fit the traditional mold with open arms. Every artist who performs at Tmuna has an uncompromising passion for artistic expression as an extension of their being. In all genres, including theatre, dance, performance, music, visual arts and cinema, performers are breaking the boundaries across the board with unique shows. Their efforts were recognized by some of the leading Fringe festivals in the world, including Edinburgh’s Fringe festival.
From dark 1980s body painting parties, to rock ‘n’ roll circus nights, this freak-friendly club destination is a circus in the day and a party at night. This is also your only chance to visit Tel Aviv’s first independent performing arts center. You never know, you might need to enlist a lion tamer to keep you calm through the night’s thrilling events.
Tzavta theatre was founded in 1958 by poet Avraham Shlonsky as a centre for progressive culture and has stood the test of time. It still thrives today as a central showcase space for cultural and artistic expression in Israel. Inviting lecturers to the theatre for political debates adds an extra layer to the alternative cultural centre, bridging the gap between intellectual and artistic creativity.
Hangar 11’s got challah bakes, business affairs, and commercial events; Hangar 13’s got jazz and blues; Hangar 22’s got Beit HaYotzer. This small and intimate performing arts space is a hopping venue for the hottest musicians in town. Putting on concerts by international and local musicians, Hangar 22 sends music blasting through the port and into the waves of the Mediterranean all night long. Buy your tickets to the next show, head down to the port, and wait in line for a unique musical experience.
Located in Southeast Tel Aviv in the Hatikva Quarter sits a quaint community center called "Beit Dani." The community center comes equipped with an outdoor pool, open for the summer season. Beit Dani hosts a variety of events including DocAviv's December film screening and performance series taking place every Thursday until the end of the month.