Orna Porat

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Orna Porat
Orna Porat 1957.jpg
Orna Porat (1957)
Native name אורנה פורת
Born Irene Klein
(1924-06-06) June 6, 1924 (age 90)
Cologne, Germany
Citizenship Israeli
Occupation Theater actress
Religion Jewish (originally Christian)
Spouse(s) Joseph Proter

Orna Porat (Hebrew: אורנה פורת‎) (born June 6, 1924) is an Israeli theater actress.


Orna Porat Children's Theater

Irene Klein (later Orna Porat) was born in Cologne, Germany, in 1924. Her father, Willi, was a Catholic, and her mother, Elise, a Protestant, but she chose atheism and socialism in her youth.[1] In 1934 her family moved to Porz, where she attended high school. During these years she was a member of the Hitler Youth, although her family opposed this affiliation.

She attended drama school and began her stage career at a repertory theater in Schleswig.

Porat met her husband, Joseph Proter, in Schleswig. He was an officer from the British Mandate of Palestine in the Jewish Brigade of the British Army. In 1946, she moved to Palestine with Proter, and married him (in a civil ceremony). She converted to Judaism later, in 1957, and they held a Jewish ceremony before adopting two children.

After being refused by the HaBima and Ohel theaters, she was accepted by the Cameri Theater, where she took her Hebrew name. She appeared there for many years, until 1984.

In the early 1960s, she spent three years in France and England studying children’s theater. Upon her return to Israel she founded a children’s theater, under the wing of the Cameri. In 1970, the children’s theater became independent. Porat directed several productions. She retired from managing the Children’s Theater after nineteen years.

She helped establish ASSITEJ, the international children's theater association.[2]

Awards and recognition[edit]

Hanna Meron and Orna Porat, 1949
  • Porat won the Kinor David prize, awarded by Yedioth Ahronoth, on three occasions; in 1970, 1974, and 1980.
  • In 1979, she received the Israel prize for her lifetime achievement in theater. [3]
  • In 1997, she received the Israel Theater Lifetime Achievement award.
  • In 2005, she won the EMET Prize for science, art, and culture, awarded by the prime minister of Israel.[4]
  • Other awards received by her include the Brenner Prize.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ http://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/porat-orna
  2. ^ "The grand woman of Israeli theater". The Jerusalem Post. December 1, 2005. 
  3. ^ "Israel Prize recipients in 1979 (in Hebrew)". Israel Prize Official Site. 
  4. ^ "Orna Porat". EMET Prize website.