LONG BEFORE Yehoram Gaon or Yigal Bashan began to philosophize about news-related issues on Israel Radio on Friday afternoons, popular prize-winning singer, composer and musician Shlomo Artzi was doing so on Army Radio with his seasonal program It's Not Yet Shabbat. It's something he's being doing for 28 years, and he's not tired of it yet. Artzi, who celebrated his 60th birthday on November 26, may be willing to slow down a little on the concert circuit, but he's committed to continuing with his radio show, which he revived last Friday.
ISRAEL PRIZE laureate Lia Koenig also celebrated her birthday recently - but since a lady doesn't tell her age, suffice to say that the stage and screen actress - who is a Holocaust survivor - has no intention of retiring. Some of her friends got together to give her a surprise party at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Tel Aviv, which is one of her favorite hangouts. The staff was already familiar with her favorite snacks and health food requirements. Most of the guests were entertainment personalities; actor Oshri Cohen was among the youngest and Shlomo Bar Shavit was among the representatives of Koenig's generation. Also present were Itzik Weingarten, Hila Ben Dor and polling queen Mina Tzemach.
ALSO CELEBRATING a birthday is Adi Himmelbleu, one of the stars in the Hebrew version of Treasure Island. Himmelbleu was feted by her parents and friends at a surprise party in Yarkon Park to mark her 24th birthday. She will take time out during Hanukka for a more romantic celebration with her significant other, Oren Maor. Perhaps they will go to Eilat, where she can show of some of the swimwear she's been modeling for Pilpel.
AN EXHIBITION that opened at Yad Vashem in April of this year dedicated to Holocaust survivors who had contributed to the development of the State of Israel featured Gottex founder Lea Gottlieb, who is credited with putting Israel on the world fashion map. Among the other Holocaust survivors who made a fashion impact was Bulgarian-born Rojy Ben-Joseph, who died earlier this year. A look that she created around quarter of a century earlier was being emulated in the first decade of the second millennium. Long before contemporary designers were inspired to use the keffiyeh as a fashion symbol, Ben-Joseph recognized its potential and created marvelous caftans which graced the covers of international fashion publications. Last week, Shenkar College of Fashion and Textile Technology opened a tribute exhibition to her creativity.
IN A cover story in the current issue of the women's magazine La'isha, singer and television personality Orna Datz discusses her separation from Moshe Datz, who was not only her husband, but also her onstage and onscreen partner. Though the separation was painful, Orna was convinced that they would both get past it and remain friends, because the bottom line is that with shared children, they remain family.
WANTED: A Ninette Tayeb lookalike to star in a new YES drama series about what goes on backstage in shows such as A Star is Born. Some of the people who actually appeared in A Star is Born will feature in the series, where the behind-the-scenes tensions which may have been captured by the camera were not shown on TV. This includes the rivalry between Tayeb and Shiri Maimon, which will get a good airing in the drama series. Apropos Tayeb, who earned a pretty penny from Pelephone for shearing her tresses for a commercial: She may not be the face behind the phone for much longer. Rumor has it that although she may wow the crowds when she's onstage, her starring role in the commercial did little if anything to boost Pelephone's sales.
NOW LIVING in Los Angeles, former football star Haim Revivo and his wife Sagit were back in Ashdod recently for a family wedding. They'll be back again in March, if not before, to celebrate the bar mitzva of their son Bar at the Tel Aviv Hilton.