“You won’t read the famed Yiddish language author the same way again.” – Hollywood Reporter
“‘The Muses of Isaac Bashevis Singer’ differs from the usual hagiography-with-caveats convention that defines the genre…Many of the interviewees are not mere commentators, but subjects of the film themselves.” – Forward
“’Muses’ is most valuable in exploring this connection between Singer’s seduction of translators and his seduction of a worldwide readership.” – Prof. Ruth Wisse, Harvard University, Mosaic
Isaac Bashevis Singer, the famous Yiddish writer and Nobel Prize winner created his worldwide literary reputation with the help of dozens of Yiddish translators at his side. Almost all of them were women. Beyond simple translation, these translators were a vital source of his creativity. The inspiration he drew from them came in many forms—friendship, plot material, critique, cultural guidance, and sometimes romance. Today nine female translators remain to tell his story. Intimate, poignant interviews and exclusive archival footage combine to portray the unknown story of an author who charmed and enchanted his audiences, just like he charmed and enchanted his translators. The Jewish Film Festival in New York called the work “unflinching” as well as “human.”
Asaf Galay has directed and written a number of award-winning documentaries for Israeli television. They include series on Israeli humor (In the Jewish Land, 2005), the history of Tel Aviv-Jaffa (Tel Aviv-Jaffa, 2007); the life and influence of the Zionist hero Joseph Trumpeldor (When the Lion Asked Twice, 2008), and the Israeli national poet Natan Alterman (Sentimentality Allowed, 2012). He has just completed writing, directing, and producing a documentary film on the Yiddish writer Isaac Bashevis Singer titled The Muses of Bashevis Singer. Also premiering in 2015 is a documentary film he directed and produced on how comics reflect Israeli life, entitled The Israeli Superheroes.
Shaul Betser is a well-known director of cultural series programs and documentaries in IBA and Channel 2. He was also the founder of the video channel’s website Nana-NetVision. He has a BFA from the Department of Film and Television at Tel Aviv University.