Exclusive: Tricycle apologises for film festival boycott


The chairman of the Tricycle Theatre has apologised for boycotting the UK Jewish Film Festival and admitted that the venue made “the wrong decision”.

Last summer, the north London theatre responded to the Gaza conflict by calling on the UKJFF to drop the £1,400 funding it received from the Israeli embassy.

The festival refused and withdrew from the venue.

Writing in the JC this week, Tricycle chairman Jonathan Levy, who is Jewish, says: “The intention behind this request was for the Tricycle to maintain its political neutrality at a time of great national and international political tension. When the UKJFF withdrew in response, many in the Jewish community felt let down by the decision the Tricycle had taken, believing the theatre to be conducting a cultural boycott and taking an antisemitic stance. Neither were ever intended. Many saw the Tricycle’s actions as being directly critical of Israel. Very sadly this alienated part of the Jewish community, with whom the Tricycle has always held a close, long-standing and much-valued relationship.”

Mr Levy continues: “All of us involved with the Tricycle are sorry for our initial decision and its unintended consequences.”

He adds that he is now hoping to build bridges with the community.

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