The Mixer

Manofim Festival's Musical Performance Series

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In times of crisis we sometimes tend to think that we must choose the instinct of survival, which reduces and streamlines, and in doing so, perhaps give up art. Supposedly, it seems that we cannot afford to waste resources on that which is considered a luxury. However, time and time again history confronts us with the fact that man cannot be reduced to a purely rational and survivalist machine, and that it is possible that in choosing art lies the profound difference between mere existing and actually living and that it is the only thing that allows us to develop, progress and contain the complexity as well.

This year we chose to take apart and reassemble everything that seemed obvious to us. This is also how the musical spaces of the Mixer series at the festival were created. Three gatherings of music and spirit, manifesting multiple questions about and examining different dimensions of faith, shared destiny, devotion and harmony, and the ability to imagine today’s tomorrow. 

All performances will take place at the main stage on the roof of the Art Cube Artists’ Studios in Jerusalem

Artistic director of the Mixer: Itamar Bernstein

Artistic director of Manofim festival: Rinat Edelstein

Producer: Shir Wiesel 

Stage design, lighting and sound: OFFBiT Collective


“Devotion” - the Blind Orchestra rolls down an invisible path

20:30 – doors open | 21:00 – curtain-upstanding concert
Rooftop of the Art Cube Artists' Studios, Ha’Oman 26 st., Jerusalem

With: Yael Deckelbaum, Jenny Penkin, Alon Neuman, Eyal Talmudi, Dor Levin, Yair “Nabi” Bar-Maoz, Nahdi Lazar and Dov “Balu” Rosen

There are many moments at which we close our eyes, sometimes almost without noticing. During deep prayer, a surprising feeling of fear, or even just sneezing, the eyes close by themselves, regulating and turning off the sense of sight. Perhaps this is how we allow ourselves to be less overwhelmed with information, to deal with and take control of the intensity of feelings. In our dynamic and turbulent lives, closing one’s eyes by choice can also be a particularly powerful tool. A tool that allows us to discern the reality that takes shape within us, and to try to imagine a world that is beyond what is offered to us through external vision.

This is the action around which the Blind Orchestra is built, a momentary and evolving concept founded by musician Dov “Balu” Rosen, which brings together a variety of gifted musicians who for one evening choose to devote themselves to the depths of blindness. For our festival, eight unique musical talents join on this one-time journey – Yael Deckelbaum, Jenny Penkin, Alon Neuman, Eyal Talmudi, Dor Levin, Yair “Nabi” Bar-Maoz, Nahdi Lazar and Dov “Balu” Rosen.

Throughout the performance, with a variety of musical instruments scattered around them, the musicians will improvise and be operated by a conductor’s baton over several sessions that will be woven on the spot and invented according to the dictates of the moment. With a touch on the head – start singing or stop. With a touch on the hand – start playing or stop. And the way? It winds with our breathing. The pieces are improvised and develop organically and associatively, in front of the audience and sometimes even with its participation, and are filled with adventure, groove, creativity and humor.

Yael Deckelbaum – Vocals

Eyal Talmudi – Reeds

Dov Balu – Drums

Jenny Penkin – Vocals

Alon Neuman – Drums, spoken word, vocals

Yair “Nabi” Bar-Maoz – Guitar and vocals

Dor Levin – Keyboards, bouzouki, drums

Nahdi Lazar – Bass, keyboards

"In Partner" - an exposed performance for an equilateral triad

18:00 doors open | 19:00 curtain-upseated concert
Rooftop of the Art Cube Artists' Studios, Ha’Oman 26 st., Jerusalem

With: Ella Ronen, Ruth Dolores Weiss, Yehu Yaron

In a time characterized by a great deal of confusion, after many institutions, conventions and structures collapsed on all of us, it seems that we have a need to go back to the basics. What is the source of the human need for music? How can one return to experiencing it in a more direct and primal way? When we were born, we produced sounds and listened to them. There was no separation between artist and audience, we all created, and that’s where we want to go back, even if for one evening. Be together. In partner.

Ruth Dolores Weiss, Yehu Yaron and Ella Ronen, three songwriters, offer a meeting that is a new creature – a hybrid between a performance, a workshop and an open rehearsal; An exposed performance, where everyone sits together as people, without any separation, and creates music together. Whether in singing, in a rhythmic element, or in any other way, the artists will perform songs of all three of them, and also songs that they particularly like, together with you, with the continual reminder to leave room for conversation, emotion and the unexpected.

Ella Ronen – Vocals

Ruth Dolores Weiss – Piano and vocals

Yehu Yaron – Bass and vocals

"Pictures at an Exhibition" - musical paintings and open questions about undefined thoughts

20:30 – doors open | 21:00 curtain-upseated concert
Rooftop of the Art Cube Artists' Studios, Ha’Oman 26 st., Jerusalem

With: Shalosh / guest artists: Maya Belsitzman, Daniella Tourgeman, Rebel Sun and Tula Ben Ari

In the winter of 1874, after the death of the painter Viktor Hartmann, the Russian musician Mussorgsky composed a ten-part work, dedicated to the memory of his painter friend, called “Pictures at an Exhibition”. The movements he wrote simulated the feeling of observing the paintings of the deceased, and interwoven between them were interludes which described the feeling of the visitor passing through the paintings in the exhibition.

While words have the power to convey a precise and poignant message, music actually has the ability to hold multiple messages at once, to hold a wonderful complexity between us, and to send each of us to a completely different place. For the concert that closes the Manofim Festival of 2024, the international jazz band Shalosh will be joined by the colorful musicians Maya Belsitzman, Daniella Turgeman, Rebel Sun and Tula Ben Ari, and together with them we will embark on a journey between images that might have not yet been created or are already embedded in our collective consciousness for entire generations. During the concert, we will move between the realm of abstract improvisation and songs which were chosen specially for its decoration, and which will try to guide us through the exhibition in our pulsating imagination.

Gadi Stern – Piano

David Michaeli – Double bass

Matan Assayag – Drums

Maya Belsitzman – Cello and vocals

Daniella Tourgeman – Vocals

Tal TULA Ben Ari – Vocals

Rebel Sun – Rap

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