|Native name||נסים אלוני|
|Born||24 August 1926
Florentin, south Tel Aviv, Mandate Palestine
|Died||13 June 1998
Tel Aviv, Israel
|Alma mater||The Hebrew University of Jerusalem|
|Occupation||Playwright and translator|
Aloni was born Nissim Levi to poor Bulgarian Jewish immigrant parents in Mandate Palestine. His family lived in Florentin, a low-income neighborhood in south Tel Aviv, which later became an inspiration for his work.
After graduating from high school, Aloni enlisted in the Notrut, a Jewish militia operating as an auxiliary police alongside the British. He wrote for the weekly BaMahane, and fought in the 1948 Arab-Israeli War. Following his military service, he was appointed to the editorial board of the periodical B'Ayin and served as literary editor of Ashmoret. He studied history and French at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
In 1953, his first play, Most Cruel the King, was produced at the national Habima Theater, creating a stir amongst theatre goers. The play focuses on the figure of Jeroboam. In 1961, Habima produced his play "The King's Clothes", which established him as one of the country's leading playwrights. In 1963, Aloni teamed up with Yossi Banai and Avner Hezkyahu to create the "Seasons Theater", for which Aloni wrote and produced the play The American Princess. From that point onward, Aloni produced all his plays. He also began writing skits for the comedy troupe Hagashash Hachiver, and produced some of their programs, such as Cinema Gashash and Cantata for Shawarma.
Many of his plays involve royalty, such as The King's Clothes, The American Princess, The Bride and the Hunter of Butterflies (adapted for television by Ram Loevy), Edi King. His other plays include The Gypsies of Jaffa, The Revolution and the Chicken, Lukas the Coward, The Raucous Dying, Napoleon Dead or Alive.
Aloni highly esteemed the actress Hanna Rovina, and wrote a play, Aunt Liza, specifically for her to act the lead part.
He has also published a collection of prose, Notes of a Stray Cat
Awards and critical acclaim
- In 1983, Aloni was a co-recipient (jointly with Ozer Rabin) of the Bialik Prize for literature.
- In 1992, he became honorary fellow of the The Sam Spiegel Film and Television School, Jerusalem.
- In 1996, he was awarded the Israel Prize for stage arts – dramatics.
Works outside of Israel
"The American princess" was translated from Hebrew to Swedish by Viveka Heiman and then from Swedish to Norwegian by Jens Bjorneboe. It was produced by Oslo city theater Den Nye Theater, Directed by Izzy Abrahami. Abrahami convinced the Israeli consul in Oslo to invite Aloni to the premier. Nissim Aloni came and was thrilled to sit next to the Norwegian King. Nissim brought to Izzy Abrahami an original painting by Yosel Bregner as a big hug and since then they became the best of friends.
In November 2009, a street was named for him in Tel Aviv.
- Nesikhah ha-Ameriḳaʾit (Tel Aviv, 1963) translated as "The American princess" by Richard Flantz (ISBN 965-255-011-6)
- Akhzar mi-kol ha-melekh (Tel Aviv, 1968)
- Edi King, a play in two acts (Tel Aviv, 1975)
- Ha-Kalah ṿe-tsayad ha-parparim (Tel Aviv, 1980)
- Napolyon, ḥai o met! (Tel Aviv, 1993)
- Dodah Lizah (Tel Aviv, 2000)
- Ha-Tsoʻanim shel Yafo (Tel Aviv, 2000)
- Bigde ha-melekh (Tel Aviv, 2004)
- Reshimot shel ḥatul reḥov (Tel Aviv, 1996)
- "Nissim Aloni – Curriculum Vitae". Ben-Gurion University of Negev – Hebrew Literacy Archives. 27 January 2009. Retrieved 28 July 2009.
- "Nissim Aloni, 72, Author and Playwright". New York Times. 21 June 1998. pp. 35 (section 1, NY edition_. Retrieved 28 July 2009.
- "List of Bialik Prize recipients 1933–2004 (in Hebrew), Tel Aviv Municipality website" (PDF).
- "Israel Prize Official Site – Recipients in 1996 (in Hebrew)".
- Tel Aviv to name street after playwright Aloni
- ʻAl melakhim, śaḥḳanim ṿe-tsoʻanim : meḥḳarim be-yetsirato ha-teʾaṭronit shel Nisim Aloni edited by Nurit Yaʻari.
- Nissim Aloni at the Institute for the Translation of Hebrew Literature