Israel continues to enjoy many appearances by the world’s most famous and talented performing artists, notwithstanding incessant calls by anti-Israel activists for a boycott of the Jewish state, including violent threats against those who disregard those demands.

Most recently, according to media announcements, pop icon Cyndi Lauper plans a show for this coming January 4 at Tel Aviv’s Nokia Arena.

Superstars Beyonce and Justin Timberlake are expected to perform in Israel in 2014, it was reported.

According to the Tourist Israel website, Julio Iglesias, one of the top-10 best-selling music artists in history, will perform at the Mann (Bronfman) Auditorium in Tel Aviv on November 24 for the second time this year. He appeared at Caesarea’s Amphitheater in August, as well as in 2011 and 2009.

Singer and dancer Paula Abdul, a recent judge on American talent shows “American Idol” and “X-Factor,” is now ending a 10-day visit; she met not only with Israeli political leaders, including President Shimon Peres, but also with the Who’s Who in the fields of Israeli fashion, dance and music. At the age of 51, the still-youthful Jewish-born star enjoyed a belated Bat Mitzvah celebration – a coming-of-age rite for girls at the age of 12 marking their ascent into womanhood, including the acceptance of responsibility to act according to Jewish values – in a low-key ceremony in the mystical northern city of Safed.

Six-time Grammy Award winning recording artist Rihanna, 25, entertained more than 55,000 fans last month at Tel Aviv’s Hayarkon Park.

Famous Welsh entertainer Tom Jones – at 73, still energetic and captivating – recently packed Nokia, notwithstanding intense pressure from the Palestine Solidarity Campaign to cancel his stop in Israel during a tour that included a performance in the United Arab Emirates. The anti-Israel group had created an online petition, urging Jones to cancel his Israel tour, which garnered more than 1,200 signatures, and a Facebook page for the same purpose was also created.

In August, Eric Burdon of The Animals, 72, one of the most successful stars of his generation, wowed a huge audience at the Zappa Shuni Amphitheater in the town of Binyamina, near Haifa. His manager had originally cancelled the concert, due to death threats, but after reconsideration, the show went on.

American R&B icon Alicia Keys, 32, ignored similar pressure from BDS activists to nix her Tel Aviv appearance, where 8,000 fans packed Nokia in July. Idan Raichel, the 36-year-old Israeli celebrity known for his Idan Raichel Project – unique with its blend of electronics, traditional Hebrew texts and Ethiopian music – joined her for a number, as did her two-year-old son.

Also in July, British rocker Sir Cliff Richard, 72, who had scored more than 40 Top-20 hits in England in the 1960s, performed twice at Nokia; the second show was arranged due to high demand. It was his fourth visit to the Holy Land; the most recent visit before this past summer was 25 years ago, and he vowed to the Tel Aviv audience not to wait that long again.

Author: Atara Beck, Staff Writer for United with Israel

Date: Nov. 6, 2013