Carlos Vives on stage. (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) (Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)
Carlos Vives

“Thanks Tel Aviv! It has been a very special night!” Carlos tweeted after the concert. “What an incredible concert, we are very happy to have been here with you to share and learn from here a little more!”

By: United with Israel Staff

Grammy Award-winning Colombian musician Carlos Vives held an extremely successful and enjoyable concert in Tel Aviv at the end of last month, despite facing weeks of intense pressure from supporters of the anti-Israel boycott movement, tweeting soon after that it was a “very special night.”

Over the past month, Carlos has been on a world tour, traveling across the globe to share his music with his fans. He performed in Chile, Costa Rica, Germany, and the United Kingdom without a hitch. When it came to his July 31 concert in Tel Aviv, however, he was attacked by activists attempting to make Israel — and only Israel — off-limits to international artists.

BDS Colombia launched a petition calling on Carlos not to perform in Tel Aviv. It attracted thousands of signatures and was circulated by boycott groups around the world.

In the days and weeks leading up to his Tel Aviv show, boycott activists bombarded his social media accounts with lies about Israel, portraying it as an “apartheid state” and trying to force him to cancel his concert.

Responding to BDS, the Creative Community For Peace (CCFP), an organization comprised of prominent members of the entertainment industry dedicated to promoting the arts as a means to peace and to defending artistic freedom, jumped into action behind the scenes, offering its support to Carlos and his representatives.

Carlos ultimately decided to rebuff the boycott pressure and join the many Latin American artists who have performed in Israel in recent years, including Maluma, Wisin, Daddy Yankee, Bomba Estereo, Ricky Martin, Nicky Jam, and Carlos Santana.

“We’ve traveled to many countries, looked for accordion music in other cultures different to ours,” Carlos said in a video posted to his Instagram account. “Languages and history, politics and culture separate us. But what unites is all is music.”

“Thanks Tel Aviv! It has been a very special night!” Carlos tweeted after the concert. “What an incredible concert, we are very happy to have been here with you to share and learn from here a little more!”

The BDS movement, including anti-Israel activist and musician Roger Waters, consistently calls on artists to cancel events in Israel, a tactic that has worked on a few performers, including Stevie Wonder and Lorde.

Most artists ignore the movement, including Radiohead, which performed in Tel Aviv last  July, Steve Vai, who performed in Israel in March, and Ringo Starr & His All-Starr Band, who performed in June.

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