JTA NEWS
23 April 2018 - 9 Iyyar 5778 - ט' אייר ה' אלפים תשע"ח
JTA NEWS :
Arts & Culture
Sounds of the Old City festival brings musical cultures together E-mail

Now in its sixth consecutive year, Jerusalem’s Sounds of the Old City festival was held from 12 to 15 March. This festival of international music is inspired by the Old City quarters, which are a focal point of Jerusalem’s culture and tourism.

The highlights of the fourday event included concerts, shows and special tours. It offered visitors an experience of the musical traditions found in the Old City of Jerusalem, where many ensembles played melodies both ancient and modern on a range of instruments, creating a collage of beautiful music.

The festival also strengthened the different quarters and religions through its focus on the uniqueness of each group and the connection between them all. The sounds were varied and rich, and connected to the stones, the alleyways and the people of Jerusalem. The musicians were spread out along a circular path, beginning by Jaffa Gate, moving through the Armenian Quarter, then the Jewish Quarter, then the Muslim Quarter and finishing in the Christian Quarter.

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Holocaust film and exhibition presented in the Philippines E-mail

In an event in March at the Lyceum of the Philippines in Manila, Israel’s Embassy in the Philippines, in co-operation with the Embassy of Hungary, presented Son of Saul, the Oscar-winning best foreign movie for 2016, and “Beyond Duty”, an exhibition and forum acknowledging the Righteous Among the Nations and Holocaust survivors.

The two embassies, together with the University of the Philippines (UP) Film Institute, showcased Son of Saul on 12 March at Cine Adarna in Quezon City. They also hosted two separate by-invitation-only screening events in partnership with the Film Development Council of the Philippines and the University of Santo Tomas.

Set in Auschwitz-Birkenau in 1944, Son of Saul tells the story of Saul Ausländer, a Hungarian member of the Sonderkommando, the group of Jewish prisoners isolated from the camp and forced to assist the Nazis in the machinery of largescale extermination. While working in one of the crematoriums, Saul discovers the body of a boy he takes for his son. As the Sonderkommando plans a rebellion, Saul decides to carry out an impossible task: save the child’s body from the flames, find a rabbi to recite the mourner’s Kaddish, and offer the boy a proper burial.

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Jerusalem Arts Festival 2018 E-mail

Well over 40 cultural activities, including plays, dance shows and concerts by professional and semi-professional artists, took place as part of the Jerusalem Art Festival from 5 to 12 March in Jerusalem’s major concert halls and theatres.

The venues included the Jerusalem Theater, the Gerard Behar Center, the Khan Theater, the YMCA auditorium, Beit Shmuel and St. Andrew’s Church. Free performances were held every evening before and after the main performances at the Jerusalem Theater. The festival, which has been produced annually by the Culture and Arts Department of the Jerusalem Municipality since 2002, has become a cultural tradition in the city, with hundreds of artists participating in dozens of performances.

This year’s opening event was Kalimat by Incubator Theater, featuring Arabic music, rock, rap and spoken word all in one. This new show celebrated the union between traditional Arabic music and modern Western tunes. Born out of a collaboration between Firqat Al-Nur orchestra and the Bedibur label, the concert presented authentic Arabic music that preserves the beauty of the Hebrew language. The result was a fascinating and intelligent performance with traditional melodies and puns, spiced with occasional criticism and nostalgia.

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