Celebrity Grapevine

Actress and model Smadar Kilchinsky is trying her hand at makeup art.

ICONS OF the culture and entertainment scene gathered at Villa Sokolov in Tel Aviv last week to join Cellcom CEO Amos Shapira in saluting "something small but good in Israeli culture." Cellcom was a local pioneer in bringing popular music and culture to the masses via cell phones, said Shapira. Among the celebrities who have partnered with Cellcom in its current cultural celebration are: Beit Lessin director Tzipi Pines, Cameri Theater director Noam Semel, Gesher Theater director Lena Kreindlin, Globus Group CEO Yoram Globus, plus dramatists, singers, actors and actresses including Yona Elian, Yonatan Gefen, Ephraim Sidon, Oded Kotler, Israel Gurion, Amos Kollek, Harel Skaat, Miri Mesika, Keren Peles, Sarit Hadad and Ran Danker. THE POPULAR saying is that you can't go home again, but rock musician Ephraim Shamir discovered otherwise. Expelled from his native Poland in his mid-teens, Shamir - already climbing the musical ladder back then - was a reluctant immigrant to Israel, but he eventually found his place here. Among other accomplishments, he was a member of Danny Sanderson's highly acclaimed band Kaveret. Shamir also spent time abroad, but until recently he did not go back to Poland. Nonetheless, with Poland's current pro-Israel, pro-Jewish stance, Shamir found himself drawn back to the land of his birth in a quest to discover his roots. Not only did he receive red-carpet treatment, but in an interview that he gave to Yediot Aharonot, Shamir said that his Polish citizenship was restored and that the mayor of his hometown apologized for the anti-Semitic policies of the regime 40 years ago. Ironically, Shamir is perceived by Poland's media as a Pole who succeeded in Israel. Moreover, he received numerous requests from Polish musicians who wanted to work with him. VETERAN COMEDIENNE, singer, dancer, stage and screen actress, radio and television hostess and song festival emcee Rivka Michaeli will receive a lifetime achievement award at the annual Israeli Television Academy awards ceremony in July. She already received a lifetime achievement award in 2001 at the Golden Screen ceremony run by the leisure magazine P'nai Plus. Michaeli was a member of the Nikui Rosh team that long ago set the pace for shows such as The Cameri Quintet and Eretz Nehederet (Wonderful Country). Almost anyone who had a television set in those days was au fait with Nikui Rosh, whose satirical skits were conversation points for a whole week. Michaeli frequently partnered the late Yossi Banai in comedy acts onscreen and onstage. Another frequent partner was Tuvia Tsafir. In recent years, Michaeli has concentrated more on the stage than on the small screen, but she has remained in the public eye. ACTRESS AND model Smadar Kilchinsky, who was in the prime of her career in the 1980s and 1990s, has added another string to her professional bow. Aware that her modeling days could not last indefinitely and that many of her acting roles were related to her exotic appearance, Kilchinsky has found another means of income. She took a professional makeup course with master makeup artist Boaz Stein, who taught the ex-wife of Assi Dayan and Sharon Alexander how to camouflage flaws and produce the best results for people appearing on high-resolution television. That doesn't mean that Kilchinsky will abandon her other professions, but she wants to give Stein's lessons a go as well. THE ANNUAL Crossroads Comedy Tour is fast approaching. Crossroads Comedy, founded by Israeli-born Hollywood comedian Avi Liberman was conceived as means of relieving tension during the second intifada. Liberman and his childhood friend Caryn Green, director of the Crossroads Center in Jerusalem, came up with a benefit event that would attract popular American comedians to Israel for a good cause. The Crossroads Center caters to English-speaking teens-at-risk with an outreach program to help with rehabilitation. Since the inception of the comedy tour, Liberman has recruited well-known figures from the American comedy circuit to perform. When he comes back next month, he will be accompanied by Harland Williams, Dan Naturman and Lowell Sanders. This will be Williams's first trip to Israel; he is well-known on the Hollywood scene for numerous film, stage and TV performances including Dumb and Dumber, There's Something About Mary and appearances on The Tonight Show and Late Night with Conan O'Brien. Naturman was a favorite of judges and fans on the NBC hit reality show Last Comic Standing and also featured on the David Letterman Show. Sanders, making his Israeli debut, has appeared on comedy stages all over the world and on TV shows like Home Improvement and The Drew Carey Show. This year's tour begins on June 17 in Ra'anana, then hits Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Beit Shemesh. ONE OF Israel's most effective tourism slogans is: "Follow the sun to Israel." As tourist figures continue to rise, hotel operators expect the coming summer to be a good season. In anticipation, Fattal hotels are investing heavily in summer entertainment throughout the chain. The NIS 10-million budget will provide entertainers to perform for the hotels' clientele, among them Shiri Maimon, Ilan Golan, Yaacov Cohen and Shalom Asayag, who will each give around 40 performances during the season. The performances will take place at Club Med in Eilat, but all Fattal hotel guests will be permitted to enter gratis.