web analytics
May 4, 2015 / 15 Iyar, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Thank You, Amir Benayoun

A few months ago we decided to add another musical event to our annual agenda in Hebron.
Amir Benayoun

Amir Benayoun
Photo Credit: Hebron

An interesting thing happened last night on the way to Ma’arat HaMachpela. I just happened to bump into 2,500 people.

Actually, it wasn’t a chance accident. It was, rather, intentional.

In Hebron we have two annual music festivals: one during the Passover holiday and the other during Succot. Usually we host numerous performers, finishing off the event with a ‘big-name’ singing star.  These events can attract from the thousands to the tens of thousands, depending on the show.  The crowd is usually ‘chasidic’ – young, religious men and women who come into Hebron for a free, fun day.

A few months ago we decided to add another musical event to our annual agenda. However, rather than cater to the ‘normal’ Hebron crowd, we opted to reach out to others, who don’t necessarily care for ‘chasidic’ religious music. We also decided to charge admission. There are many people, religious and secular, who live all over Israel, who have, for one reason or another, never been to Hebron.  We chose to give them a good reason to visit our holy city.

Amir Benayoun , not yet forty, has released over 12 albums since 1999. A native of Beer Sheva, Benayaoun , today living in Modi’in, started on a path to religious Judaism over ten years ago. His musical style, much closer to ‘Mizrachi’ that is, ‘oriental’ Jewish music, as opposed to Chasidic, Ashkenazi tunes. Over the years he became extremely popular, especially amongst younger audiences, spread out throughout Israel.

When approached to perform in Hebron, Amir became quite excited, saying that he’d never yet been here. A date was set, and a couple of weeks ago, tickets were put on sale. It was apparent, almost immediately, that the show would be sold out. Many times, tickets go slowly, with a surge towards the last day or so before the show. Not so with these tickets, with this performance. The show was going to be held across the street from Ma’arat HaMachpela, in the area of the ‘Chicago Square’ garden. We figured we’d have room for about 1,700 people. That was our target number. Last night, some 2,500 people viewed the concert. It really was an amazing show. Amir arrived in Hebron at about six o’clock. After a brief stage rehearsal he visited Ma’arat HaMachpela for the first time in his life. I spoke to him as he was leaving, asking him for his feelings. He had difficulty expressing himself, saying that it would take a few days for him to actually digest the fact that he’d visited the tomb of our Patriarchs and Matriarchs.

The show started at about 8:30, with an opening by Amir’s brother Avi, a talented musician in his own right. After a few songs, Amir came on stage. The entire area crackled with electricity of expectation. Benayoun didn’t let anyone down. His powerful voice, and even more powerful lyrics, filled the air for well over an hour. As with such performances, the crowd didn’t want to let him go. But this affair was really special, as behind Amir Benayoun, we could see, towering above us all, Ma’arat HaMachpela. The spirituality of that site, combined with the spirituality of many of Amir’s lyrics, filled the air with a unique expression of Jewish faith and music.

The fact that he’d never yet been in Hebron didn’t prevent Amir from producing a special song about Hebron and Ma’arat HaMachpela. Together with Moshe Klughoft , he wrote ‘Mother, look’ – ‘Mother, look, so much time has passed, I’ve returned to you…’. Truthfully, I didn’t know if I’d really enjoy the evening. Such events are always exciting. Seeing so many people in Hebron, knowing that for many of them this was their ‘first time,’ leaves you with a  thrilling sensation. But I wasn’t sure how I’d deal with the music. But, boy, was I in for a surprise. It was out of this world. I guess that’s really not strange, being that we are situated at the entrance to the Garden of Eden.

Amir’s music really is true ‘soul music,’ delving into the deepest layers of a person’s being, his voice soul-piercing, together with words and music, penetrating unfathomable depths. In other words, it was really something else. A night to be remembered.

About the Author: David Wilder is the spokesperson for the Hebron Community.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Thank You, Amir Benayoun”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
A Gaza building, reportedly used by Hamas, destroyed by the IDF on August 26, 2014.
NGO Monitor: Negative Testimony from ‘Breaking the Silence’ Meets Quota for Grant Makers
Latest Indepth Stories
Discovery of Jewish artifacts at base of Temple Mount
dating to period before creation of Islam

Israel promotes coexistence and peace, providing freedom for all religions on the Temple Mount.

Dollars

The Jewish vote won’t impact polls as much as it will the coffers of candidates and their Super PACs

The Maersk Tigris

Iran stands unopposed by the “international community” and is racing to assert regional dominance.

Hundreds of Israeli-Ethiopians clash with police in a protest in Jerusalem against  police brutality and alleged racism.

If some Israeli cops got a Jewish education & learned to love Jews, Israel would be a better place

No where in the world is there the level of intervention by foreign countries as exists in Israel.

The Ravens’ Ray Lewis screamed that violence is never the answer.” Unfortunately, he is wrong.

Obama is the latest incarnation of our ancient enemies who arise every generation with a new face

Why do Jews, then, sometimes feel more intensely about Polish anti-Semitism than they do about German anti-Semitism?

The president is unwilling to cede any of what he considers his exclusive powers in the area of foreign policy and has struggled mightily to keep the Senate away from any role in the kind of deal to be negotiated.

Jews thank Hashem at every step. We thank Him for our most basic physical existence. We thank Hashem for every step, for every breath, for every aspect of our elevation from the dust.

Jewish settlement of the land and the resulting employment opportunities drew the Arabs to Palestine

Mon. May 11, 2015@5 PM, history’s largest Shofar blowing will occur outside the UJA-Fed. Building

More Articles from David Wilder
He was my friend. He was also a doctor. A very good one. He treated both Arabs and Jews. His trauma treatment was legendary in Israeli medical circles. His on-the-spot diagnoses were, after weeks of hospital tests, found to be 100% on the mark.

The agenda of articles appearing 20 years after the Goldstein episode has nothing to do with human rights or suffering.

Netanyahu shaking hands with Arafat in Hebron.

Seventeen years ago today, the ‘Hebron Accords were implemented.

A few days ago Hebron joyfully greeted back the archaeologists.

Ariel Sharon. He had many positions, and many titles. I will remember him as a monster.

Tomorrow, together with literally tens of thousands here in Hebron and Kiryat Arba, we will read in the Torah how Abraham, almost 4,000 years ago, purchased the Caves of Machpela for us, his children.

A few hours after the murder, the Prime Minister issued a directive to allow Jews back into Beit HaMachpela immediately.

People here develop “antennas” which pick up vibrations in the air, and the vibes were definitely there.

The first time was many years ago. I had just concluded explanations about Yeshivat Knesset Yisrael” which arrived in Hebron from Slobodka, in Lithuania in 1924. The Hebron Heritage Museum at Beit Hadassah features an exhibit about this illustrious Torah-learning academy, nicknamed the ‘Hebron Yeshiva,’ which includes a ‘class picture’ from 1928. As I finished […]

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/personal/thank-you-amir-benayoun/2013/06/25/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: