Theft of equipment leaves new season of Romania’s Jewish theatre in jeopardy

(JTA) – In the wake of the theft of key pieces of equipment, Romania’s main Jewish theatre may not be able to open its 2017 season, the theatre’s director said.

The theft of $12,000 worth of equipment occurred last week at a storage unit in Bucharest used by the Hebrew State Theatre, Maia Morgenstern told the Romanian media on Sunday. Backdrop and lighting equipment was stolen, she told the Agrepres news agency.

Morgenstern said she has contacted other theatres to ask for assistance in order to open the 2017 program as scheduled but was not sure whether it will be possible.

“We will see how we can proceed and how we can operate in these conditions. I will find ways in which we continue our work,” she told Agrepres.

The theatre, which opened in its current location in central Bucharest in the 1930s, was a major catalyst in the development of Yiddish theatre in Romania until the Holocaust and later the emigration of hundreds of thousands of Romanian Jews.

In 2014, it closed down for months after a snowstorm damaged its dilapidated roof. The theatre was repaired with state subsidies.

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