Tourist Tip #370 / Annual Piano Festival: 180 Performers Over Five Days

15th festival has nearly 50 performances, including 'Things that can be done with a piano and things that can be done against it'

This week Tel Aviv pays tribute to the 88-key percussion instrument with its annual Piano Festival, now in its 15th year. This year's festival, from November 5-9, showcases some of the most famous names in Israeli music and also spotlights a handful of up-and-coming indie artists from across Israel.

Nearly 50 performances by 180 artists will take place over five days. Most of the performances will be at the Suzanne Dellal Center, in the seaside neighborhood of Neve Tzedek. A few performances will be held in other spots around Tel Aviv - make sure to ask about venue when ordering tickets - and some will take place at Beit Avi Chai in Jerusalem.

Highlights of the festival include a performance by HaBiluim, a polka-rock band known for political satire. The band features the avant garde pianist Maya Duneitz in a concert entitled: "Things that can be done with a piano and things that can be done against it."

Another show to look out for is by pianist and singer-songwriter Assaf Shatil, launching his debut album "Pine" - of songs in English. Shatil will be appearing with his indie-jazz-based trio, and will be a special guest, the actress and singer Efrat Ben Zur, with whom he performed at the festival three years ago on her album of Emily Dickinson poems, "Robin."

The Piano Festival's lineup is available in Hebrew. Tickets can be purchased via Zappa http://www.zappa-club.co.il/ or by calling 03 762 6677.

Susan Dellal Center: 50 Shabazi Street, Neve Tzedek, Tel Aviv. Phone number 03-510-5656 (but you can't buy tickets through this number, only through Zappa).

Brodet Center for Jewish Culture, 22 Zeitlin St., Tel Aviv, 03-695432

Beit Avi Chai, 44 King George Street, central Jerusalem, tel. 02-6215300.

Parking at Susan Dellal: Good luck with that. Available (legal) parking by sidewalks is rare as the hoopoe in Neve Tzedek. The neighborhood sports several tiny parking lots that may or may not have space but probably won't. There is a large parking lot at the end of the street, "Hamitkham", but you can't reach it from Neve Tzedek. To get there you have to take the coastal road, Koifman Street, and turn onto Hamered Street. Check a map first. Or take a cab.

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Dan Keinan