Jewish Journal

One Israeli creation for the weekend

by Noga Gur-Arieh

December 6, 2013 | 12:23 pm

Logo from Festigal 1997/ Wikipedia.

In Israel, there’s no Broadway, and the staged Musicals are considered a small, uncommon genre. That is, until Hanukkah. Once a year, for about a month around the time of Hanukkah, the Israeli public rushes to the theaters for the most musical time of the year. Every year, the curtain rises over new musicals for children or for the entire family, from adaptations of well-known fairy tales to local performers aiming for the younger generation putting on a special act.

Between the changing varieties of musicals, one show stands out as an Israeli Hanukkah tradition: The Festigal.  It is a singing contest, where the most famous stars take the stage and perform an original song, within a storyline that bundles all of the acts together. At the end of the spectacular show, the audience can vote for their favorite performance and a winner is announced at the end of the show’s yearly run.

The first Festigal took place in Haifa in 1981and since then it developed to become the biggest even of Hannukah. Nowadays it is travelling throughout the country, reaching all children of Israel with different storylines and stars every year.


Official clip of Festigal 2013


Shalom Hi Mila Shimushit (Shalom is a useful word). Performed by the "Children's Queen" of the 90's, Michal Yanai, in the 1996 Festigal


Kmo Robin Hood (Like Robin Hood). Performed by Ran Dnaker in the 2004 Festigal


All you need is love. Performed as part of The Beatles tribute at the 2012 Festigal

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My name is Noga Gur-Arieh, and I’m an Israeli Journalist, currently studying for my B.A degree in Media and Political Science, at Tel Aviv University.

I am very socially...

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