Grapevine: Wrapping up the show

You can't expect lemons to taste like cherries. Matisyahu expresses less than insightful opinions on the future generations of Jews.

Matisyahu no hat 311 (photo credit: REUTERS)
Matisyahu no hat 311
(photo credit: REUTERS)
■ JUST OVER six months ago, popular Channel 10 News anchor Miki Haimovich shocked the broadcast industry when she announced that she was quitting. It was a bigger shock than the announcement by veteran Channel 1 news presenter and anchor of an economics program Dalia Mazor that she too was leaving. Mazor was not too far from retirement age, and given the attractive severance package offered by the Israel Broadcasting Authority, it was worth her while. As far as doing something out of character was concerned, she’d aroused quite a lot of media attention when, at age 60, she competed in Dancing with the Stars, so she more or less went out with a bang. But she hasn’t left the microphone entirely. She’s picking up extra income by doing commercials, in which the opening line is “Hi, this is Dalia Mazor.”
But Haimovich was a different ball game. She celebrated her 49th birthday on June 15, indicating that she still had a long way to go before she would have to step down. But she was tired, she said, though she certainly didn’t look it at her farewell party last week at Kastiel in Jaffa. There was no reason that she should look tired. She’d just returned from a romantic vacation in Paris with her husband, television host Eli Ildis, who celebrated his 45th birthday on May 26.
The party looked like a broadcasters’ convention. Guests included Yaacov Eilon, with whom Haimovich has been co-anchoring the news almost since the start of commercial television – first on Channel 2, and then on Channel 10. Also among the merrymakers were her successor Tamar Ish Shalom, weatherman Danny Roup, Gadi Sukenik, Ilana Dayan, Shalom Kital, Emanuel Rosen, Yohanan Tsangan, and many others, who hung around till the small hours. There’s no immediate danger of Haimovitch dropping out of the social loop of the industry.
She’ll just tag along with Ildis to wherever he’s invited.
■ YOU CAN’T expect lemons to taste like cherries. Similarly, you can’t expect hassidic rap and reggae performer Matisyahu (a.k.a. Matthew Paul Miller), who found fame after he found religion, to be an expert on how to keep the next generation within the fold just because he happens to be popular with young people. Matisyahu, who came to Israel for a series of performances with Hadag Nahash, reportedly flopped when appearing with Sarah Silverman at the Presidential Facing Tomorrow Conference.
Maybe it had something to do with the fact that he was contemplating his 32nd birthday, which was yesterday, June 30. Maybe he was worried that he was getting old – or at least older, all things being relative. While in Israel, Matisyahu performed both in Kikar Safra in Jerusalem and at Zappa in Tel Aviv. It’s uncertain whether he got a large discount or a freebie from the Crowne Plaza in Tel Aviv, where he occupied the luxurious Presidential Suite and also posed in front of the hotel’s logo screen, which will serve the hotel as an endorsement for a long time to come.
Nearly all three- to five-star hotels in Israel place such screens behind speakers’ podiums and prominent personalities who are among their guests – a factor that enables them to advertise their prestige on the backs of dignitaries and celebrities, without having to pay them.
■ NUMEROUS CELEBRITIES of Iraqi background could be seen among the 500 people who crowded into the Diamond Theater in the Ramat Gan Diamond Exchange complex for the premiere of the new Iraqi comedy Beit El Jiran, directed by actress Sigal Shaul. Included among the well-known personalities in the audience were cosmetics queen Pnina Rosenblum, actor Uri Gavriel, actress Lilit Najar, lawyer Sassi Gez and Prof. Sasson Somech, to name just a few.
■ OVER THE past year, Israel’s business tycoons have been playing musical chairs, traveling around the country to the weddings of each other’s offspring. After attending a goodly number of such weddings in recent months, Nochi Dankner will soon have his turn to play father of the bride. Dankner and his wife, Orly, are marrying off their daughter Rona on September 1, and have already purchased a luxury apartment for her and their prospective son-in-law, Talor Ardan, in a new prestige building where the neighbors of the newlyweds will include Bank Leumi CEO Galia Maor. The selling price of apartments in the building is $6,000 per sq.m.
Although Dankner recently received many accolades for his philanthropic work, there’s a move afoot to force him out of some of his businesses because some people in the Knesset, as well as a number of leading economists, think that the interaction of these diverse ventures has resulted in a conflict of interests. Some MKs want to introduce legislation whereby Dankner will have to decide which category of business appeals to him most, and, in so doing, will almost automatically discard another.