THIS WEEK IN JERUSALEM: Peggy Cidor’s round-up of city affairs

Two highlights of the Jerusalem Arts Festival will take place at the Bible Lands Museum: Reshimu, the festival’s closing event; and Memory and Dream, an evening of dance.

April 4, 2019 16:22
2 minute read.
jazz band

The Oved Pinchover jazz trio performs at the Shaon Horf music and arts festival in Jerusalem February 11, 2019. (photo credit: BEN BRESKY)

Shuk and chic

The formation of an ad-hoc committee including three Mahaneh Yehuda merchants and a representative of the shuk’s nightlife scene may mark the beginning of a new era for the famed market. Three months after the resignation of the last committee, headed by Nino Peretz, who was identified with former mayoral candidate Ze'ev Elkin, the provisional committee is seeking to bridge the needs of the merchants with the market’s growing number of restaurants, bars and other night venues. The four will report to Mayor Moshe Lion, while elections for the permanent shuk committee should take place within a few weeks.

Public lane

The plan to develop a bus lane on the Begin Highway seems stuck in bureaucracy. While the municipality, the ministry of transportation and the master plan for mass transit all concur on this as a solution to ease Jerusalem’s traffic jams, nothing seems to be moving to create the right of way.

“Everything is ready” said the source, “but nothing can be done until the transportation minister [Yisrael Katz] signs an approval on the budget. So we wait.”

Meanwhile this week, the municipality approved a budget of NIS 20 million (from the NIS 3 billion budget for large projects and infrastructure for 2019) to extend the train line from Tel Aviv via a tunnel to Davidka Square.

Arts in the Holy City

Two highlights of the Jerusalem Arts Festival will take place at the Bible Lands Museum: Reshimu, the festival’s closing event; and Memory and Dream, an evening of dance.

Reshimu celebrates the cultures of Persia, Morocco, Turkey, Iraq, Kurdistan and Yemen, with several ensembles performing in the museum’s galleries surrounded by ancient artifacts.

The event 4HER will kick off the festival week, as four dance and performance artists take the audience on a journey through the museum galleries in shows combining ancient instruments, contemporary and ethnic dance and a live DJ. April 3 and 8 at 8 p.m. at the Bible Lands Museum.

The Jerusalem Arts Festival has been produced annually by the Culture and Arts Department of the Jerusalem Municipality since 2002. Some three dozen plays, dance shows and concerts by professional and semi-professional artists are taking place April 1 to April 8 at the city’s major concert halls and theaters.

The most do-gooders

Good Deeds Day takes place nationwide, but Jerusalem again this year had the most participants.

On Tuesday, some 95,000 Jerusalem residents turned out to do good deeds and foster goodwill in more than 350 projects.

Activities included a makeover of the community compound in the Shmuel Hanavi neighborhood, a sports day shared by Arab and Jewish schoolchildren, a photo exhibition and preparation of first-aid kits for the aged.

The central event at the First Station attracted thousands of participants.

I spy

Spies of No Country, the latest Matti Friedman book, will be presented and promoted by the author at the Beit Avi Chai center next week, (Wednesday April 10).

Tracing the story of the Israeli Intelligence Services, focusing on a short period in 1948, the book tells the story of four men – Gamliel, Isaac, Havakuk and Yakuba – who became members of the Arab Section, a secret unit led by the Jewish military organizations in the British Mandate period. As Jews from Arab countries, they were especially valued for their linguistic skills and ability to work effectively as spies and saboteurs in enemy territory.

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