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David Zinder

A Full Professor at the Theatre Arts Department of Tel Aviv University, and an internationally acclaimed director and acting teacher, David served for many years as Head of Acting and Directing at Tel Aviv U. and as the first Artistic Director of the University Theatre. In this capacity David created extensive international relations and a major international reputation for the department. At the same time David pursued a world-wide career as a director and a highly sought-after acting teacher. In 2004, after years of balancing his academic and professional careers, David took early retirement from Tel Aviv University in order to focus primarily on his first love: directing.
David’s professional training began at the fledgling Theatre Arts Department of Tel Aviv University, followed by a BA in Drama at Manchester University in England. In Israel David pursued a career as a professional actor for five years, working in most of Israel’s major theatre companies. Two out of these five were spent with an enormously successful English-language improvisation group based in Jerusalem, under the tutelage of Jackie Kronberg - from the famous Second City Improvisation group. This intensive training in Improvisation Technique laid the groundwork for most of his later work as a director and teacher. In 1972 David went back to university and in 1976 he completed his PhD. Summa Cum Laude at the Drama Dept. of the University of California at Berkeley (The Surrealist Connection: Towards A Surrealist Aesthetic of Theatre) That same year he joined the faculty of the Theatre Arts Department at Tel Aviv. Later David was deeply influenced by the work of Eugenio Barba and Joseph Chaikin, with both of whom he became acquainted in the late 70's. The work he did with all of these mentors formed the basis for the development of his own unique system of actor training: ImageWork Training.

The discovery, In the early 90's, of a deep, intuitive connection between his own independently developed ImageWork Training and the Michael Chekhov Technique, led David into a period of learning that opened up new directions for the further development of his work, giving it a broad context as well as greater depth and amplitude. 

Over the years David's workshop schedule has taken him throughout the United States, the United Kingdom and Europe (both East and West), as well as to the Far East where he has taught extensively at the Theater Training and Research Program (TTRP), at the Practice Performing Arts School (PPAS) in Singapore. This school has recently been reconstituted as the Intercultural Theatre Institute (ITI) and David has been invited back to teach there in 2012-13. 

Most recently, David has begun giving workshops at Hyderabad, India and is due to direct a production there at Samahaara Actors’ Studio, and in the summer of 2012 he will be giving a workshop to the Tainaner Ensemble in Taiwan, one of the top theatre companies in that country.

Since 2002 David has been directing extensively in Romania and recently extended his professional directing engagements to the US as well. It was during that same year – 2002 – that his book on acting training Body Voice Imagination: A Training for the Actor, was published by Routledge in New York. After selling extremely well the book has now been re-published in an expanded and revised second edition, which includes a completely new chapter on the connections between ImageWork Training and the ChekhovTechnique.

David is also currently involved in establishing a School for the Arts which will include Theatre as well as Film &Television studies in a new college in the Tel Aviv area in Israel. The school is due to open in October 2010.

David lives in Tel Aviv with his wife, Leah, a television journalist and media trainer, and has three children and six grandchildren, all living in Israel.