A celebration of voice
Vocal music is the focus of the eighth Felicia Blumental Festival from May 22 - 27 mostly at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art with forays to Or Yehuda and Kibbutz Eilon.
"A Gallery of Voices" features French counter-tenor Philippe Jaroussky, young Italian soprano Lucilla Galeazzi, Voces Musicales, a young and prize-winning choir from Estonia and l'Arpegiatta ensemble led by baroque harp virtuoso Christina Pluhar, a choir whose musicians come from all over Europe.
The first concert is Naomi Shemer A Capella with the New Vocal Ensemble. Galeazzi will perform medieval and baroque music with l'Arpeggiata in Al Improvviso (23/5). Jaroussky will perform (24/5) in a program devoted to the "sweetness and torment of love" with music by such as Monteverdi and Uccelini. The Estonian Choir will present the Israeli debut (25/5) of his requiem by Michael Haydn, Josef's younger brother.
Every afternoon there will be The Music Fair, mini-concerts in the museum galleries as well as movies between 5-8 p.m. As always, the festival starts with a free Meet the Artists program at 6:30 pm. - Helen Kaye
Pitching her tent
During the first two weeks of May, French artist Clara Halter will create an installation she calls "Tents of Peace" consisting of a mighty canvas covering the rock of Abu Tor and literal tents on the Talpiot promenade in Jerusalem. The 160 X 70 meter canvas will display the word Peace in French, Hebrew, Arabic, English and various other languages. The 20 tents, conceived in the spirit of the tents of meeting and justice common in the East since Abraham, will each contain a video screen that will broadcast messages of peace from around the world to which the public can contribute by posting their messages on a yet-to-be-activated site on the Internet or by writing on a canvas provided for the purpose in the tent.
Halter, who is Jewish, was born, lives and works in Paris. Previous monumental works include the 2000 Wall for Peace that she and architect Jean-Michel Wilmotte built on the Champs de Mars below the Eiffel Tower, the Peace Tower created for the tricentennial of St. Petersburg and most recently, the Ten Gates of Peace in Hiroshima to commemorate the city's destruction in 1945.
French foreign minister Philippe Douste-Blazy will open the installation on May 17 together with his local counterpart. Part of the French Season in Israel, the installation will go to various municipalities in France where they will be set up permanently. - Helen Kaye
Depeche Mode to record TA concert
Local pop music fans will have more than one opportunity to enjoy Depeche Mode's concert in Israel this summer. While the English hitmakers will perform in Israel just once, fans will have the option to receive a recording of the concert several weeks after the show, sponsors have announced. As is happening at other stops on the band's world tour, promotional booths will be set up outside its Israeli concert venue where interested fans can sign up to receive the recording in the mail.
More than 20,000 tickets have been sold so far for the concert, which is scheduled to take place August 3 at Tel Aviv's Hayarkon Park.
The concert will cap off one of the busiest summer concert schedules in Israeli history, with other international performers including 50 Cent, Ricky Martin and Sting all set to perform in the next few months. - Nathan Burstein