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Despite their difficult backgrounds, our diverse youth found a sense of home, a passion, and a tool for life in the theatre. 

IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Aya

Khuni

To me the Ensemble is like Narnia, an amazing place you can't imagine where a surprise always awaits you. I get a feeling something exciting is about to happen each time I arrive there.

The Ensemble is the place that helped me realize my biggest dream - acting, and not just acting but Theater. The Ensemble made me dream big, thinking that I can, it's possible, that a day will come and I too will be on the biggest stages in the world along with the best actors and actresses.

As most of my friends at the Ensemble know - I'm Arab. Now, if we get into the stupid argument if I'm Palestinian or Israeli I prefer to stay with my religion and say - Hi, I'm Aya, I'm Muslim and I'm a woman. Without definitions and nonsense, what's the problem for me to just be me as a person and not get caught in stigmas of 'oh she's Arab so she likes Hummus, oh she's Muslim so she must be a terrorist, oh she's a woman so she'll probably waste her life in the kitchen with children". So no! I'm Aya I'm Muslim in my faith, and I'm a strong woman who's not afraid of anything, and especially not afraid of dreaming and doing and showing the world I am, not matter what or who I am.

I joined the Ensemble a year and a half ago. At first I didn't feel 100% great, but with time I realized how it opened doors for me to places I didn't even think of looking at. For me it's a place to be me all the way through, to expose different sides of myself and talk about things I can't talk about anywhere else. You can say it's my place of release. I really love coming to the Ensamble because it really is a place that can change you any many ways, can get you to open up, to take you out of the box, and it's just an active place which makes you move a lot instead of sitting and doing nothing. Through the Ensamble I've understood what my dream is, which is to be a psychologist who helps people with the aid of theater like the Ensamble :) and I believe I'll be successful.

Nur

Kuasma

Liam

Ezra

My dream is to be known for myself. I want to be candid, real, and not as someone crazy. I've found my place in the Jaffa Youth Ensemble, it's the place to make my dreams real, it's my second home.

The ensemble is a place where everyone accepts each other for who they are, the most empathic place in the world. It has changed me - my religion, my knowledge of theatre my confidence to differentiate dreams and reality.

Here I can fulfill myself among a group of boys and girls who dream of acting on stage.

Racheli, 17 

My name is Laliv, I'm 16 years old, first year in the Ensemble.

At the beginning when I joined I was a bit scared because it's was new, but it didn't take more than 30 minutes for me to understand what an amazing place I've come to.

The Ensemble is filled with opinions, cultures, and stories, each one light years apart from the other. And the most beautiful part is that when class begins nothing stops anyone from just acting.

From the moment you step through the Ensemble's door you are equal among equals. I even feel very welcome and wanted there, and it's very difficult to get me to feel this way.

The Ensemble gives me a place to free myself. I can let my feelings set free during scenes and there's nothing I love more.

This amazing place allows me to prove to myself that with all the craziness of life I can calm down, put everything aside, and do what makes me feel best which is acting.

All my dreams of fulfilling myself in theater/TV in Israel and then move on to the rest of the world were very small before. Now I believe I can do anything.

The Ensemble gave me the most important gift you can give a person which is the knowledge that I can, and not matter how many things stand in my way, I will achieve my goals.

There is no place more amazing, each kid is a magic of different color.

Laliv

16

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