500 people of all faiths came to central London on Thursday 9 May to celebrate Israel’s 71st birthday and celebrate they did. Speaking after the event Paul Charney commented, “An audience of Israelis and Brits, Jews, Christians and Muslims, all different cultures, colours and creeds, came together and created what can only be described as an electric atmosphere.”
ZF and JNF UK bring people of all faiths together to celebrate London’s biggest Yom Ha’atzmaut event
The concert, sponsored by Masa, commenced with a welcome from ZF Chairman Paul Charney, followed by an address by His Excellency Mark Regev, Israel’s Ambassador to the UK, Israeli Minister for Jerusalem Affairs and Environmental Protection Ze’ev Elkin and JNF UK trustee Gary Mond. All spoke passionately and excitedly about Israel’s momentous achievements and contributions to the world in just 71 years. Speaking on behalf of JNF UK Chairman Samuel Hayek, Gary Mond said “We are proud to stand together with Israel, through the hard times as well as the good; to celebrate her incredible achievements and to support her in her times of need.”
The show kicked off with the angelic voices of the Naima JPS choir, followed by the twists and twirls from dancers of the Israeli Dance Institute. Then came Guy Barzily who sang a medley of Israeli Eurovision-winning songs which literally brought the entire audience to their feet, singing, dancing and waving their flags to the iconic tunes.
Magician Nick Crown brought an air of mystery and wonder to the evening, demonstrating his mind reading and memory capabilities to members of the audience, even allowing one audience member to control the beating of his heart!
And then came the headline act. Café Shachor Hazak, a hip-hop duo of Ethiopian descent who burst onto the stage, electrifying the audience with their energy and beats. Café Shachor Hazak closed their performance with their hit song, Ha’kol ihiyeh beseder (Everything will be ok). And it sure had been. A wonderful audience entertained by wonderful performers, all in celebration of a wonderful country, Israel.