A fund-raising event in Athens, intended to benefit Palestinian hospitals and featuring leading Greek stage performers who are popular in Israel, was canceled after Israeli media outlets depicted the event as anti-Israeli, according to impresario Moshe Yosef.
A leading impresario who specializes in performances of Mediterranean music, Yosef blamed Israeli media interest for the cancellation, as well as "quarrels between Israeli impresarios."
"There was nothing political in the event. It was about buying prosthetics and hospital equipment and received support from the right and left and the UN and the World Health Organization," he said.
Artists' cancellations began when the highly popular Glikeria, represented in Israel by Zion Kedem, decided not to appear because of what she considered the political nature of the event, according to Kedem. "She's convinced the artists didn't know what they were being enlisted to support. When they found out, they pulled out." George Dalaras and Haris Alexioy were among those who decided not to appear.
Kedem brought what he called "the political nature" of the event to the attention of the press after he saw a poster in Athens. In it, a Palestinian youth with a slingshot is seen facing down an Israeli tank. "The poster speaks for itself," he said.
"Zion Kedem brought the poster here to get everybody hot and bothered, and it bothers me because Alexioy and Dalaras are artists who care deeply about Israel," said Yosef. "They appear in many pro-peace events and that event was supposed to be pro-peace."
Kedem retorts that "The minute the event calls for an end to the occupation, it becomes political. The poster was all over Athens and understandably resulted in protests." Indeed, he added, the advertisement's design was changed, but by then the event had been canceled.
Want to enjoy 'Zen' reading - with no ads and just the article? Subscribe todaySubscribe now