Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality has partnered with Tel Aviv Cinematheque to reopen a former drive-in theatre in Tel Aviv, Israel, to celebrate Tu B’Av – also known as ‘Jewish Valentine’s Day’. Two romantic movies – La Belle Époque and Zero Motivation – were screened on 5-6 August 2020, exclusively for DigiTel Resident Card holders.
The screenings were held in the Shlomo Group Arena parking lot, the location of Tel Aviv’s former drive-in theatre. Launched in March 1973, Tel Aviv’s first drive-in complex was closed in 2000. The multipurpose Drive-In Arena, subsequently renamed the Shlomo Group Arena, was inaugurated at the site in December 2014.
“Tel Aviv is the ‘non-stop city’ but the coronavirus outbreak understandably halted a large share of cultural and leisure activity,” said Ron Huldai, mayor of Tel Aviv-Yafo. “Nevertheless, we constantly searched for creative ways to grant residents access to culture. The return of the drive-in is another creative way to pass the hot August days, in accordance with Health Ministry guidelines.”
Tickets had to be purchased ahead of time via the municipality website. Each screening had capacity for 200 vehicles, strictly in accordance with Health Ministry guidelines and ‘purple badge’ public health standards. Movie audio was transmitted via an FM radio frequency.
The screenings were organised by Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality’s Arts and Culture Division (Performance Department), in partnership with municipal companies Tel Aviv Cinematheque, Expo Tel Aviv and Sport Palaces of Tel Aviv-Yafo. Other municipal initiatives launched to support cultural activity in the city include providing support to artists and cultural organisations facing difficulties resulting from the crisis; subsidising intimate outdoor performances in restaurants and cafes; funding street performances in central locations; and offering hundreds of outdoor activities for families and elderly residents every month.
Photos: Amir Yakoby