Close to 250 pupils from seven TALI schools took part in the first installment of the 7th annual music festival “Shirat Halev” (Song of the Heart) this week. The festival, in which the children perform classic Jewish-Israeli-Land of Israel songs, was held at the Masorti School in Jerusalem.
The event opened a series of festivals, held in May of each year, with a total of 1,250 children participating, from 35 TALI schools throughout Israel.
The TALI Education Fund is marking the 50th anniversary of the unification of Jerusalem with this month-long festival, following classroom study of curricula on Jerusalem. The songs performed are from the finest tradition of Hebrew songs as well as from traditional texts. The groups performing include choirs, orchestras, dance groups and musical ensembles.
There are five festival days this year, all held in May. The first one was on May 3, at the Masorti School in Jerusalem, attended by 250 pupils from 7 TALI schools: Cramim in Modi’in, Hadror in Mevasseret, Rabin in Dimona, Adam V’olamo in Adam (Geva Binyamin), and Ilan Ramon, Geulim and Pisgat Ze’ev North in Jerusalem. The festival continues on May 10 at Kibbutz Hazorea, May 21 in Ashdod, May 22 at Kfar Yona, and a dance festival on May 25 in Modi’in.
The tradition of TALI choirs from all over the country getting together, to sing songs based on Jewish sources and Israeli folksongs, is continuing this year. The Shirat Halev festival marks the end of the school year for TALI schools. The festival serves to support and encourage the musical experience in the schools, and to enrich pupils by expanding their repertoire of songs from Jewish and Israeli tradition. They also provide points of connection between TALI schools throughout the country and emphasize the importance of experiential education through artistic and musical enrichment.
“The idea behind the project is to create a musical learning experience that fosters solidarity and pride in being part of the TALI family,” says TALI music specialist Bat Ela Birnbaum, who initiated and directs the project. “Each year we have veteran schools and new schools, and the goal is to allow the pupils to take part in a non-competitive experience. I believe that music is the best way to connect people and that children can learn a great deal even without books.”