On Thursday, March 22nd, Heartbeat's All-Star Band performed at the Brigham Young University Jerusalem Center's grand auditorium. Other performers included folk legend Peter Yarrow, David Broza, The Jerusalem School's band, and The Arab-Jewish Center in Yafo's: Voices of Peace. Every group brought something special to this dazzling show of music and cooperation.
Peter Yarrow, of the iconic Peter, Paul and Mary, known for songs like Puff the Magic Dragon and other timeless American folk classics, was the featured musician of the night. He founded the non-profit Operation Respect, whose mission is to, "... assure each child and youth a respectful, safe and compassionate climate of learning where their academic, social and emotional development can take place free of bullying, ridicule and violence." Peter has brought this program from the U.S. to different schools in Israel/Palestine, including the Jerusalem School.
David Broza the renowned, multi-platinum album selling, Israeli singer-
The Jerusalem School is a special place where, "... we desire to create students who are balanced, secure, and maturing...and who are academically and socially prepared to succeed wherever they go." The school serves students from the Palestinian community in Jerusalem, Beit Jala, and Bethlehem. Their band, in their first ever live performance, played some original music, and some classic Western songs like "Imagine." They performed a great rendition of 'This Land is Your Land' adapted to Israel/Palestine.
Voices of Peace, the Arab Jewish Community Center’s unique youth choir conducted by Idan Toledano, is comprised of Jewish, Muslim and Christian youth from Tel Aviv-Jaffa singing in English, Hebrew and Arabic. It was made up almost entirely of young women with one young man on percussion and singing baritone, and Idan on guitar and oud.
Heartbeat rocked out, playing original tunes such as Inta Omrak, I Said, and Bukra Fi Mish Mish, as well as Richie Haven's 1960's classic Freedom. The song was perfectly fitting for a joint show with Peter Yarrow, whose iconic Peter, Paul and Mary played Woodstock; Freedom was the opening piece of the legendary festival. While the audience included many young Palestinians, most likely friends of the performers from the Jerusalem school, it was largely comprised of Americans and Israelis. One could see the delight and surprise on the audience's faces when they heard a song with a rock groove, English and Hebrew lyrics, and a fiery Arabic rap breakdown. Heartbeat then played Ami Yares's hit song, Jerusalem. The crowd enjoyed each song, clapping and even dancing along.
It was a great night all around, and we are deeply thankful to have been included on this spectacular concert bill.