Banai, Yosef (Yossi)

(1932-2006)
   An Israeli cultural icon, he was a multidisciplinary artist in stage managing, playwriting, satire, cinema, and singing. Born in Jerusalem, he joined the Habimah Theater in the mid-1950s, where he worked most of his career. He quickly achieved fame as a talented writer of satire, comedian, and musician. In the 1970s, he branched out into a musical career, often involving the translation of French chansons into Hebrew. He also wrote books, including I Sing to Pass Away the Time, When My Mother Was Queen, and Letters in the Wind, as well as two books for children. He received the artists union's Lifetime Achievement Prize in 1993 and the Israel Prize for theater in 1998. Banai died of cancer on 11 May 2006 and was buried at Kibbutz Givat Hashlosha.
   See also Theater.

Historical Dictionary of Israel. .

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