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Ghetto (Hebrew: גטו‎) is a play by Israeli playwright Joshua Sobol about the experiences of the Jews of the Vilna Ghetto during Nazi occupation in World War II. The play focuses on the Jewish theatre in the ghetto, incorporating live music and including as characters historical figures such as Jacob Gens, the chief of the Jewish Police and later Head of the ghetto. It is part of a triptych of plays about the resistance movement, which also includes Adam and Underground. Ghetto premièred at the Haifa Municipal Theatre in Israel and the Freie Volksbühne, Berlin, in 1984.

Translations and adaptations

Ghetto by Joshua Sobol; in a version by David Lan; with lyrics translated and music arranged by Jeremy Sams. Published by Hern, 1989.

Translated into English from the Hebrew by Alan Swerdlow.

Performance history in South Africa

1987: Adapted by Rudy Nadler-Nir (of the Habimah Theatre, Israel) and directed by him for the CAPAB production presented at the Nico Malan Theatre 20 August-12 September 1987. Arrangements and musical direction by Péter Louis van Dijk, designed by Peter Cazalet assisted by Jenny Gillis, lighting by Malcolm Hurrell. The cast: Marthinus Basson, Mark Hoeben, Gys de Villiers, David Dennis, André Roothman, Aviva Pelham, Claire Berlein, Russell Copley, David Butler, Belinda Richardson, Edward Turner, Fiona Coyne.

1991: The translation by Alan Swerdlow was used for the production by Moira Blumenthal in collaboration with PACT in 1991. The cast were Jacqui Singer (AA Life Vita Award Best Supporting Actress, 1991), Dale Cutts, Anthony Fridjhon, Danny Keogh, Terrence Shank, Jenny de Lenta, Mark Hoeben.


Ghetto theatre programme, CAPAB, 1987.

Tucker, 1997. 502.

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