Tuvia Tzafir

Tuvia Tzafir, born on December 31, 1945, is an Israeli actor, comedian, mimic, singer, voice actor, children's entertainer, and television host. He is widely known by his stage persona, Saba Tuvia (Grandpa Tuvia).

Tuvia Tzafir was born to Moshe and Zehava Kozlovski (in Polish, Kozioł means goat, hence the origin of his surname). He grew up and was educated in the Florentin neighborhood of Tel Aviv in a traditional Jewish family of Polish descent.

In the early 1960s, he served in the Nahal Band and excelled as a soloist, performing songs like "Echad Cholamani" (a duet with Shula Chen). Since then, he has become one of the leading figures in Israeli television, film, and theater. In his youth, Tuvia Tzafir had a passion for cooking, which he learned from his mother. For a brief period, he even considered becoming a professional chef.

On television, Tuvia Tzafir gained fame in the 1970s through satirical programs such as "Lo Hakol Over" (Not Everything Passes) and "Nikuy Rosh" (Head Cleaning). In these shows, he portrayed caricatures of politicians, including Yitzhak Rabin, Menachem Begin, and others. He also hosted the television game show "Zeh HaSod Sheli" (That's My Secret) after Uri Zohar's retirement.

In the 1980s, Tuvia Tzafir appeared frequently on the comedy program "Siba LaMasiba" (Reason for a Party), where he often impersonated politicians in various sketches. He also had guest roles in the sitcom "Krovim Krovim" (Close Relatives).

During the 1990s, he provided the voices for political puppets in the satirical show "HaCharzufim" (The Impudent Ones) and participated in the sketch comedy program "HaAgaf HaSagur" (The Closed Roof). Between 1993 and 1994, he had his own show, "Tzafir HaNefesh" (Tzafir's Soul), which was written by Ephraim Sidon.

In 2000, Tuvia Tzafir made several television appearances, including on the talk show "Yair Lapid." From 2004 to 2005, he hosted the daily show "HaShir Shelanu" (Our Song).

In 2005, he acted in the drama series "Tel Novala Ltd." In August of the same year, he faced charges of assault and threats against a studio employee during the filming of the series. In January 2006, the Jerusalem Magistrate's Court approved an agreement between Tzafir and the state prosecutor's office, according to which he would perform 120 hours of community service for the benefit of the public without being convicted.

Tuvia Tzafir has also appeared in various stage productions and children's shows. One of his successful children's shows was "Sipur HaJungle" (Jungle Book) in 1996, where he played Baloo the Bear. In 1999, he starred in the children's play "Pam Pam Pa" as the Giant.

He gained recognition for his character "Saba Tuvia" (Grandpa Tuvia) in children's shows. The success of his first show, "Misiba BaYa'ar Im Saba Tuvia" (A Party in the Forest with Grandpa Tuvia), led to video releases and subsequent shows, including "Saba Tuvia - Stories from the King's Hand," "The Magic Coat of Saba Tuvia," "Bible Stories with Saba Tuvia," and "The Story of a Nation with Saba Tuvia." In 2000, he appeared on the children's program "Sipurim LeNimi."

Tuvia Tzafir also provided the Hebrew dubbing for the character Genie in Disney's "Aladdin" in 1993 and later in its sequels and TV series. He also voiced characters in the movies "Ice Age" (2002) and "Robots" (2005).

In 2008, he appeared in the drama series "Danny Hollywood" as the friend of Lola Bem. In the same year, he joined the "Matak Shel Festival" (Festival's Sweetness) series of children's shows.

Tuvia Tzafir continued to participate in "Matak Shel Festival" in subsequent years, including 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, and 2016. In total, he performed in the show seven times. Starting in 2012, he also starred in "Memlechet Tuviahu" (Tuviahu's Kingdom).

To celebrate his 70th birthday, Tuvia Tzafir created a new series called "Chibuk Shel Shabbat" (A Friday Hug), which aired on the Hop! channel. In 2016, he participated in "Matak Shel Festival 9."

In 2017, he appeared in the series "Shirim Me'Beit Saba" (Songs from Grandpa's House), broadcast on the Hop! channel. In 2019, he joined the series "Saba Doolittle," also aired on the Hop! channel. In the same year, he began participating in a new and classic children's show, "Sipurim HaChayot Shel Saba Tuvia" (The Animal Stories of Grandpa Tuvia), in honor of the 20th anniversary of his character Saba Tuvia.

In addition to his artistic career, Tuvia Tzafir has been married to Yael, a native of Poland, since 1966, whom he met in elementary school, and she serves as a producer for his shows. They live in Ramat Hasharon and have three children, including the television producer and director Yoav Tzafir.

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