Music Drowns Out the Hate at a Noa Concert

04/04/2017

Liberal ideals and individuals face tough times in Israel these days. But when you bring us together, we know how to drown out the opposition.

This is what happened for Israeli singer and NIF board member Noa, also known as Achinoam Nini, at a concert last week in Mitzpeh Ramon. Rightwing groups opposed to her performance with her music partner Gil Dor tried to cancel it, whistling and bothering as concert-goers entered the hall. One even dressed up as Superman wrapped in an Israeli flag, calling Noa an “Arab lover.”

But the New Israel Fund and other Noa fans had organised beforehand, bringing hundreds to ensure Noa could speak, and sing, her mind.

At nine o’clock, right on schedule, Noa’s clear voice filled the auditorium where her supporters had gathered to hear her. Once again, music outdid hate.

“I didn’t intend on coming. It’s a question of musical taste. But I came to blow my whistle against repression of freedom of speech — I know it sounds extreme, to support the jazz club and also Achinoam Nini,” wrote Ilanit Ben-Yaakov on her Facebook page.

Noa herself wrote on her Facebook page that she came away empowered by the “wonderful crowd that crammed the hall.”

Noa performs around the world and can sing in six different languages including Yeminite, her family’s native tongue. Dor and Noa share a 24-year career together and have collaborated on three albums.

Photograph by Gilad Kavalerchik

April 2017