Donovan Cancels Jaffa Peace Concert

Scottish singer's managers claim dispute over contract led to last-minute cancelation, but local producers say otherwise.

Donovan
Gene Carl Feldman

The Scottish singer Donovan has canceled his planned performance in Jaffa this Wednesday.

In a post on Donovan’s Facebook page, a representative of the singer said he “is definitely not going to Israel to play” because “the contract arrangements for a Donovan concert have not been completed.”

But ProgStage, the event’s Israeli producer, denied the claim: “Contrary to the statement by Donovan’s manager, there is not and never was any contractual problem between the parties,” it said in a statement. “We were told last week that Donovan was ill with the flu, and now he has announced he isn’t coming.”

Donovan was originally supposed to perform in Israel on January 11, but about a week beforehand, the concert was postponed to January 27. The plan was for him to host Ukuleles for Peace, a Jewish-Arab youth orchestra whose participants come from Hod Hasharon and Tira. The orchestra was founded by Paul Moore, a longtime Donovan fan, and when he invited Donovan to perform with the group, the Scottish singer said he would do so with pleasure. But now, that evidently won’t be happening.

“This is sad for me and for all Donovan’s fans in Israel,” said Moore. “We were told he was ill with the flu. I hope it’s not because of a boycott of Israel. He’s a man of peace, not a politician. I hope he’ll get better and come in the future.”

Last month, several events produced by ProgStage were canceled, including performances by Henry Rollins and the band Manfred Mann. Rollins said he canceled because of a dispute between his own production company and ProgStage.