OVERVIEW // Until 1938, Austria had an active Jewish theater scene. Through theater, Jewish culture, in all its diversity, was portrayed and critically examined, but also the problems of the day, including the rapid rise in antisemitism, were thematically treated on stage. Of this history, but a faint memory now remains. The artistic aim of the Jewish Theater of Austria is a contemporary renaissance of this important aspect of Austrian culture.

Programming includes festivals, resident productions, traveling theater, the "improvisation and dramaturgy" series, shtick!, staged readings, music events, workshops, and more. With creative, provocative work that often raises questions seldom asked on stage in Vienna, the company seeks to promote intercultural dialog through the performing arts, and to provide an antidote against intolerance and resistance to the lessons of the past.

The Jewish Theater of Austria Needs Your Support!

The neglect of the Office of Culture (Kulturamt), which effectively decides which artistic companies may or may not perform in Vienna through its control of the centralized budget for theater arts funding, makes us needful of your assistance.
Please use the secure link below to help us continue our creative and socially important work. Even a small contribution is meaningful and will help us with current projects.
As a contributor, we will keep you closely informed about new developments and will be happy, if desired, to appropriately represent your valued support.
Thank you for helping us to survive the menace of "culture-political" censorship in Vienna. For more information, please contact us.

TODAY // Founded in 1999 by Warren and Sonja Rosenzweig, the Jewish Theater of Austria is the first company of its kind in Austria since 1938 and is among the only such initiatives in Europe. The company develops and produces new works for the stage on themes relevant to contemporary intercultural experience, especially in a European context. It has performed at numerous locations in Vienna and other cities in Austria and abroad.

Productions, festivals, and other significant events in Vienna have included, among many others, Weisman und Rotgesicht, ein jüdischer Western by George Tabori, ohne Begleitung – Ein Solofestival des Jüdischen Theaters Austria, Der Flüchtling by Fritz Hochwälder, Pessach Ramadan by David Mamet and Huda Al-Hilali, der Garten im Schrank (2008 Inter.Culture.Prize) by Warren Rosenzweig, Nicht mehr hier by Abisch Meisels (et al.), Tikun Olam - Festival of International Jewish Theater, dorfplatz neubau(en) 08 (with others), and the AJT (Association for Jewish Theater) World Congress of International Jewish Theater, opened under the Honorary Auspices of Austrian Federal President Dr. Heinz Fischer.

The work of the Jewish Theater of Austria is not supported by centralized subsidy from the Vienna Department of Culture. It is a bitter irony of Viennese “culture politics” that 70 years after the start of WWII, the survival of the first theater company since 1938 to dedicate its creative efforts to the examination of Jewish experience and its connections to Viennese heritage is still threatened, after eleven years, by government neglect.

The Jewish Theater of Austria has received grants and awards from prestigious Austrian and international institutions. Nominal support has included many prominent individuals in Viennese society, arts, and politics, as well as distinguished international artists and scholars.

Over the years, the company has established a firm reputation for professional, independent theater. It has created a new niche in the cultural landscape, inspired by Viennese cultural heritage, and looks positively towards the future.
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