Over four and a half thousand households tuned in to the final of Song Ha’atzmaut – JNF UK’s song contest for Yom Ha’atzmaut.
Organised to help the community celebrate Israel’s Independence Day despite the national lockdown, Song Ha’atzmaut saw over one hundred entries submitted. Songs included covers and originals, in Hebrew and English, performed by singers of all ages.
A wide range of communal bodies, organisations, synagogues and schools partnered with JNF UK and promoted the event, with many helping to choose the top eight who made it through to the final.
The final itself was hosted by comedian Ashley Blaker, and judged by Robert “Judge” Rinder, Maureen Lipman and Rosalyn Miller, winner of the 2020 ‘Jews Got Talent’ contest.
The winning entry – “This Land” – was an original composition by Stephen Melzack, with additional vocals by his two daughters Louise and Cara. In keeping with social distancing rules, all three singers were physically separate at the time of their recording – with Louise performing from Tel Aviv!
Stephen Melzack commented:
“I’m excited and delighted to have won with my daughters Louise and Cara, and to have contributed to Israel’s amazing achievement of its 72nd anniversary celebration and JNF UK’s continued work.”
Yonatan Galon, CEO of JNF UK, commented:
“With thousands of viewers and hundreds of entries, Song Ha’atzmaut was a roaring success; testament not only to the creativity of our community and their abiding connection to Israel, but also to the commitment and generosity of the many partner organisations and bodies who came together to support the event.”