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Thursday, 14 July 2011

They Gave Us ‘Fever’!

KDF.03Three days, three nights, more than 5000 dancers in  80 over-lapping  events.

What more could an estimated 30,000 visitors to Karmiel’s annual international Dance Festival desire?

Not only somewhere to sleep  – many camp in the city’s dozens of municipal parks – they      also want artistic passion.



Michaela.HarariWhich is where  Michaela Harari and chums from ’בצעד כפול (Double Step) sashayed in to stomp their stuff.

First keeping a small lunch-time crowd waiting for an unexplained and annoying 20 minutes, US-born Harari (originally ‘Hardy’) and three colleagues then engaged and enchanted during a non-stop 35 minutes of enfevered  flamenco artistry.

Performing on an empty, black stage – occasionally bare-foot - with only their skirts and shawls for props, the women created worlds within worlds, coquettish, fiery, harsh and romantic by turn. Keren.Yohanan.

The performance concluded with a five-minute Q and A in Hebrew. This was understandable but a little disappointing as Harari could easily have translated into English. Perhaps she will consider this courtesy for future performances before international crowds.

Her group  has been going since the early 2000s and she is to be congratulated, not only for forming one of Israel’s leading flamenco bands but, as her website explains, for “trying to spread the art of flamenco in children, the elderly, new immigrants and in development towns.”

Her troupe collaborates with other artistes – including Arabs and Gypsies  - employing various styles. Members also spend months at a time engaged in intense study with experts in Madrid, Seville and Granada. Ole!

  • The pictures below (my copyright) are images from the first night of the festival held at the city’s amphitheatre where crowds were treated to about two hours of slick song and dance and a stupendous fireworks finale. Wow!


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