Music for all the senses

An experimental Israeli music ensemble, the Givol Choir consists of 15 members from a variety of musical backgrounds.

Nicolas Berggruen, an eccentric billionaire American investor, comes from a rich heritage of blending art and business. His father, Heinz, was an influential German-Jewish art dealer and collector that worked with many prominent painters, including Pablo Picasso. His brother, Olivier, is the curator of an art gallery in Frankfurt and his half-brother, John, is the owner of an exhibit in San Francisco. In many ways, Berggruen incorporates art into his work as well. His private investment company, Berggruen Holdings, recently acquired the historic Ha'adumim Building near the Carmel Market in Tel Aviv. Scheduled for renovation in the near future, he provided the Givol Choir and David Moss with access to the structure for the evening of Saturday, November 22 when they will give three separate shows there at 5, 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. An experimental Israeli music ensemble, the Givol Choir consists of 15 members from a variety of musical backgrounds. The group includes Karni Postel, a flutist who plays Israeli rock in a bikini and Fydor Makarov, a clown that makes classical music on the clarihose (a type of clarinet that he created using tubing). The choir was founded in 2002 by Maya Dunietz, an Israeli musician and composer who has participated in numerous musical collaborations around Israel and the world. After touring regularly for several years the group disbanded in 2005. "This is going to be our big comeback," Dunietz says. Although it focuses on singing, the Choir also integrates instrumentation, performance art and installations into its work. Dunietz explains, "Most of us are trained as instrumentalists rather than vocalists, so we improvise around the aesthetics of our voices instead of trying to conform to a specific sound. The result is very rich and exciting." David Moss is an innovative American singer and percussionist. He has lived in Berlin for over a decade and has performed internationally. In addition to his solo work, he has been involved in many ensembles, musicals, operas and orchestral concerts. In 2003, he sang with the American Composers Orchestra in Carnegie Hall. "I am a performer of extreme voice. I use the full capacity of human vocality, both with and without words, to create a dynamic story," says Moss. During his shows he augments his singing with primitive percussive instruments and layers the sounds with looping equipment. The two met in Berlin earlier this year and have since designed the upcoming production together. They plan to disperse the performance throughout the living rooms, kitchens, bathrooms and closets of the space. Audience members will be given maps to help them navigate the more than a dozen rooms in which the hour-long performances takes place. According to Dunietz, the show is intended to be interactive. "The guests will not be alienated from the performers. They will intermingle in a home-like environment and will even be able to play with certain sound and video exhibits," she says. Levontin 7, a superb local music venue, will provide a provisional bar where people can socialize. Moss hopes that by experiencing music in the context of their daily lives, visitors will be more fully engaged in the act. He says, "They will have to make decisions and they will be surprised. I think it will be a memorable experience that people will be thinking and talking about. Not just the next day, but a week from next Tuesday." Located at 46 Hatavor St. on the corner of Rambam St. just off the Nahalat Binyamin pedestrian mall. Tickets cost NIS 50 and can be ordered at (03) 560-5084.