Jazz in Jerusalem

Jazz In Jerusalem 1


Jerusalem is a city of paradoxes: ancient yet modern, religious yet secular. As Yonatan Razel sang on Thursday night at the Yellow Submarine’s “Not Standard” performance series, the city might seem “torn” but in fact, it’s different elements add up to a type of “harmony”. As such, Jerusalem represents the microcosm of creative conflict that is etched on each individual soul.


That creative conflict was extremely apparent on Thursday night, from the moment that one walked into the Yellow Submarine, a Jerusalem Foundation initiative that’s become an essential part of Jerusalem’s cultural scene: Men clad in traditional ultra-Orthodox gear mingled with women in tank tops; grandfathers sat next to young couples who stared lovingly into each other’s eyes. Spanish, English, and Hebrew speakers all vied for the best seats in the house, with some being grumpily relegated to the back corners. The performance venue provided an opportunity for members of Jerusalem’s different communities to mingle, and partake of a shared musical experience.


Yonatan Razel’s songs draw inspiration from traditional Jewish sources, and he has a stellar reputation in the Orthodox Jewish world. Thursday night however, was about transcending cultural boundaries, as Razel, a resident of Jerusalem’s Nahlaot neighborhood, collaborated with a local jazz trio to form new melodic arrangements for his previous works, using the genre of jazz to give new meaning to his songs. The jazz trio, consisting of Yorai Oron on bass, Tomer Bar on piano and Aviv Cohen on percussion, provided a virtuoso performance. Yonatan Razel treated the audience to their fair share of scatting, while demonstrating his wide vocal range, as well as his cello and piano-playing abilities.


Jazz In Jerusalem 2


The concert was only the beginning of what will be an extremely robust winter jazz season in Jerusalem: From December 2 to 4th, the city will host the Jerusalem Jazz Festival, supported by the Jerusalem Foundation. The festival will showcase both local and international jazz talent, providing opportunities for unique cross-cultural musical collaborations and for both Jerusalemites and tourists to enjoy some of the world’s finest jazz musicians. The festival will also provide performance opportunities and international exposure for local artists, making both visitors and local residents more aware of Jerusalem’s vibrant jazz community. Most of the concerts will take place at the Israel Museum, creating a platform for modern music to interact with ancient heritage. The Jerusalem Jazz Festival will create opportunities for audience members from different segments of Jerusalem society to interact with each other and to form bonds through shared cultural experiences, laying the foundations for a shared community.


For more on the Jerusalem Jazz Festival, or to buy tickets, please visit: http://www.jerusalemjazzfestival.org.il/?lang=en