Ariel Efraim Ashbel (*1982, Tel Aviv) is a Berlin based performance maker. He makes aesthetic spectacles weaving together a wide array of historical, political, theoretical, and pop-cultural references. Through composing and sampling, he collaborates with his transdisciplinary, international team of friends to make compositions at the intersection of theater, visual art, dance, music, and installation.
In Israel, he showed his work regularly at Tmuna Theater (Tel Aviv), Hazira Performance Center (Jerusalem), the Akko Festival, the Center for Contemporary Art and more. Since 2011, he's based in Germany, where his work is presented in HAU Hebbel am Ufer Berlin, Kampnagel Hamburg, FFT Düsseldorf, as well as the festivals Impulse (NRW), Spielart (Munich) steirischer herbst (Graz) donaufestival (Krems) and more.
In 2013, his first German-produced piece “All white people look the same to me” premiered at HAU Hebbel am Ufer, followed by “THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK" (2015) , “DO THE RIGHT THING” (2018), and most recently “no apocalypse not now” (2019). In 2016 he founded “the Wedding orchestra for Middle Eastern Music”, a performance/music project that toured around Germany between 2016-2019.
Since 2019 he’s been on tour as a light designer for the project “Sénsa”, a collaboration with artist Paul Maheke and musician Nkisi which premiered in performa NYC and was shown at the Venice biennale performance program. Further recent collaborators include Alona Rodeh, Ligia Lewis, Showcase Beat Le Mot, Constanza Macras, Apparatus, Wojtek Blecharz, Melanie-Jame Wolf and more.
Ashbel is a graduate of the School of Visual Theater, Jerusalem (2006) and holds a BA in History and Philosophy from Tel Aviv University (2010). He won the Akko Festival prize in 2003, annual scholarships from the America-Israel Cultural Foundation (2003-2007), the Mayor of Jerusalem prize in 2006, and participated in Goethe Institute and International Theater Institution's residency program for young theater directors in 2011.