(photo credit: Courtesy)
If you fancy something slightly off the beaten track over the Succot break, and don't mind getting your hands dirty, the annual Muses Festival could be just the ticket.
Now in its eighth year, Muses, which takes place in Shoham's Hahevel Park, offers a wide range of artistic hands-on entertainment on Sunday and Monday, from 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. each day. All events are free of charge.
The event organizers are keen to highlight the hospitality aspect of the holiday, describing the various artistic sections of the festival site as 'succot,' inviting participants to enter a world of dance workshops, world music, plastic arts activities, circus acts and movement workshops for parents and kids alike.
As befitting an outdoor event of this nature, there are also some eco-friendly slots in the two-day program. Hanokh Fiben and Aya Bernhard, for example, will invite patrons in to their succa, built entirely of recycled materials. The site will display new sculptures, made by Fiben especially for Muses, and works of art made by high school students. Fiben and Bernhard will also share some of the secrets of their trade with visitors at creativity workshops.
The Vertigo dance troupe's EstherChildren's Games focuses on comical situations in the children's world and combines painting, dance and game playing to convey its message.
The circus succa will host a performance by the Reaction Cabaret featuring clowns and acrobats performing daredevil stunts laced with a heavy dose of theatrical comic antics. The theme of the show is the relationships between the performers and their rapport with the audience.
The visitors will also get an opportunity to get in on the act with stilt walking and angled ladder climbing, to be taught at the circus skills workshop. And those with good coordination, or others who want to sharpen theirs, can do so at the juggling workshop to be held on site.
Naturally, there will also be musical entertainment, with the World Music succa hosting the Congas percussion duo, and the Nomay Concept acoustic trio performing popular items from the Israeli songbook.
One of the main events over the two days will be the "The Never Ending Dance" theatrical ballet show, courtesy of the Panov company from Ashdod. The comic performance centers on the story of a dancer who becomes obsessed with his craft.
Local artisans will also be setting up jewelry, painting, pottery and sculpture stalls at the Shoham festival site.
October 1 and 2. Details: www.shoham.muni.il