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During her week in Israel for a series of performances, the Argentinean singer Teresa Parodi made a point of taking one morning to plant a tree in memory of the legendary Mercedes Sosa.
Mercedes Sosa, who passed away at the start of the month, was a daughter of Argentina, whose fame was world-wide. Her songs were derived from the people of her native country and from the very start of her career she was recognized for the songs of protest and freedom that she sang. She became known internationally as "The voice of South America," "The voice of the silent majority" and also as "La Negra" because of her long, black hair.
For Parodi, planting the tree in Sosa's memory was the closing of a circle. In 2000 Parodi appeared in joint performances with Sosa in Israel and during their time here the two planted a tree together in the Mamoriah Forest in Ben Shemen.
Efi Stenzler, KKL-JNF World Chairman: "The tree that this wonderful singer, Teresa Parodi, has planted in the Ben Shemen forest is only a part of the tribute that is planned to commemorate Mercedes Sosa's memory. KKL-JNF intends, in partnership with the Jewish community of Argentina, to plant a forest in her name in the near future."
Teresa Parodi was moved to tears during the ceremony as she sang a song in memory of her friend and colleague. She explained, "I am so excited to be in Israel and see how people care for nature here especially knowing how most of this land was formerly barren waste and now I see trees flowering at the height of their beauty." She added that she also has a Jewish connection with Israel. "I have had many Jewish students in Argentina and they have even taught me to sing in Hebrew." As proof, she then sang "Oseh shalom aleinu ve'al kol Yisrael" â€¦He makes peace for us and for all Israel.
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