Arts in Brief: June 2

Jello Biafra to bring anarchy to Tel Aviv; Cinematheque to honor Mer Khamis; Leonard Cohen wins Spanish award

June 1, 2011 22:24
3 minute read.
Jello Biafra

Jello Biafra 311. (photo credit: Courtesy)


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Jello Biafra to bring anarchy to Tel Aviv

Jello Biafra, the enigmatic frontman for San Francisco punk anarchists The Dead Kennedys, will be coming to Israel in July with his new band the Guantanamo School of Medicine.

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Best known for their scathing punk era hit, “Holiday in Cambodia” from their 1978 debut album Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables, the Dead Kennedys were confrontational from their provocative name to their menacing music. Biafra went to form an independent record label Alternative Tentacles and has also developed a career as a spoken word artist and left wing political activist in addition to his musical adventures. Biafra is a vocal member of the US Green Party and in 2000, ran for the party’s presidential nomination coming in second to Ralph Nader.

The singer/poet formed the Guantanamo School of Medicine three years ago, combining his outspoken lyrics and stage persona with a psychedelic surf/punk/metal beat. The band also includes Andrew Weiss, formerly of Los Angeles punk pioneers the Rollins Band and The Butthole Surfers. Their Israel debut will take place on July 2 at the Barby Club.

David Brinn

Cinematheque to honor Mer Khamis

Juliano Mer Khamis, the renowned actor, director and activist who was murdered in April, will be honored in a special tribute ceremony this evening (7:15) at the Jerusalem Cinematheque. Mer Khamis, the son of a Jewish Israeli mother and a Palestinian father, was gunned down by a masked assailant in Jenin, where he was working at the Freedom Theater, which he helped found.


The evening will feature reminiscences by his friends and colleagues, including George Khalifa, Amnon Raz- Krakotzkin and Osnat Trabelski. There will also be a screening of his 2009 short film, The Clearing, about a father and daughter living on the West Bank.

Hannah Brown

Leonard Cohen wins Spanish award

MADRID (Reuters) – Canadian singer and poet Leonard Cohen won Spain’s prestigious Prince of Asturias literature award on Wednesday for a body of work of “immutable merit,” the jury said.

The jury decided by majority vote to confer the 2011 award for letters on 77-year-old Cohen for his writings.

Cohen’s writing “has influenced three generations of people worldwide through his creation of emotional imagery in which poetry and music are fused in an oeuvre of immutable merit,” the jury said in a statement.

Cohen left music in the 1990s and spent years in a Buddhist monastery in California, where he became a monk and took the name Jikan, which means “silence.”

But the musical and literary giant known for songs such as “So Long, Marianne,” “Suzanne” and “First We Take Manhattan” returned to the stage in May 2008.

Israel in Prague theater contest

From June 16-26, Israel will be represented for the sixth time at the Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space, one of the largest world theater events held in Prague every four years since 1967. The Israeli exhibition, Hanoch Levin - Worlds Created by Words will compete with a record number of 62 countries for the Golden Triga and other medals. The exhibition, aiming to look at the uniqueness of spaces, places, characters, and stage images created by and for Levin, the great theater innovator, is realized by Tali Itzhaki in collaboration with Gadi Dagon, Gotfried Helnwein, Michael Kramenko and Rakefet Levi. Israel will also participate in the Student section with The Chair Project, curated by Shani Tur. •

Jerusalem Post Staff

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