ONE CITY, ONE CD
A holistic approach to Israeli performing arts in the community, with a clear plan of action
What’s the issue?
The ambitious arts presenter will always look for fascinating contemporary Israeli artists to program, yet will always struggle with the financial implications of presenting an expensive unknown.
The cultural enthusiasts in the Jewish community will rarely be drawn to an Israeli performing artist, since Hebrew is not a language easily grasped, and Israeli references fly over the head of the local audience.
Invariably a more famous, more established Israeli name will be an easier decision, despite the chance it will draw only ex-pat Israelis and few locals.
As a result, since the only live events on offer in the community say little to their students, Israel educators can only present content-full challenging contemporary Israeli arts in the classroom, entirely disconnected from the experience of a live performance.
How can education, culture, and finance, be married for the good of all?
We at Makom suggest adopting the model of One City, One CD.
How would it work?
Similar to the way in which One City One Book projects work around the country, we suggest that a community adopts one CD. The schools, the community centers, the campuses will then study, listen to, discuss, and arrange events inspired by the lyrics and music of the disc. Towards the end of this process, the arts center will program a live performance of the band. Due to the broad and deep exploration of the material that has gone on throughout the community, the performance will ‘sell itself’. All the educational and social interaction with the music will form the basis of a deep ‘marketing campaign’.
Which disc to start with? Kobi Oz’ Psalms for the Perplexed
- Displays top quality musicianship
- Talks of a complex, creative and challenging Israeli society
- Offers energetic entertainment burning with a social conscience
- Speaks to ancient Jewish texts and religion in the language of today, attracting both orthodox, progressive, and secular Jews
- Wit and humor blend with deep thinking
- Capable of drawing Israelis without alienating locals
- Ready for an English-speaking non-Hebrew-understanding audience
- Open to educational work with little time investment
The website – your ideal resource center
At www.makomkobioz.wordpress.com , Makom has created the ideal guide for working with Kobi Oz in this One City, One CD project. This free online resource contains video-translations of every one of the songs on the album. It footnotes every song, explaining references and contexts. There are educational guiding questions on the site, together with downloadable pdfs for teachers to work with. There is even a specially-recorded interview with Kobi Oz himself, talking in English about the creation of the album.
This website would be the ‘accompanying guide’ to the One City One CD project, and also the key forum for coordination and exchanging ideas.
Use of the website is absolutely free – thanks to Makom’s sponsors, The Jewish Agency for Israel, and thanks to Kobi Oz and his publishing company Anana Ltd.