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Israel

 
 

Israel Main Page

 

Music and dance

Israeli music contains musical influences from all over the world; Sephardic music, Hasidic melodies, Belly dancing music, Greek music, jazz, and pop rock are all part of the music scene.

Several dozen musicians in formal dress, holding their instruments, behind a conductor
Israel Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Zubin Mehta

The nation's canonical folk songs, known as "Songs of the Land of Israel," deal with the experiences of the pioneers in building the Jewish homeland.

Among Israel's world-renowned orchestras is the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, which has been in operation for over seventy years and today performs more than two hundred concerts each year. Israel has also produced many musicians of note, some achieving international stardom. Itzhak Perlman, Pinchas Zukerman and Ofra Haza are among the internationally acclaimed musicians born in Israel.

Israel has participated in the Eurovision Song Contest nearly every year since 1973, winning the competition three times and hosting it twice.Eilat has hosted its own international music festival, the Red Sea Jazz Festival, every summer since 1987.

Modern dance in Israel is a flourishing field, and several Israeli choreographers such as Ohad Naharin, Rami Beer, Barak Marshall and many others, are considered to be among the most versatile and original international creators working today. Famous Israeli companies include the Batsheva Dance Company and the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company.

Israel is home to many Palestinian musicians, including internationally acclaimed oud and violin virtuoso Taiseer Elias, singer Amal Murkus, and brothers Samir and Wissam Joubran. Israeli Arab musicians have achieved fame beyond Israel's borders: Elias and Murkus frequently play to audiences in Europe and America, and oud player Darwish Darwish (Prof. Elias's student) was awarded first prize in the all-Arab oud contest in Egypt in 2003. The Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance has an advanced degree program, headed by Taiseer Elias, in Arabic music.

 


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