It truly is “Poland Year in Israel ”. The Jewish state may have kicked off this unique initiative, indicating the bond and solidarity between the two countries, with a festive, black-tie premiere of "Madame Butterfly" at the Tel Aviv Opera House Thursday, attended by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert and his Polish counterpart Donald Tusk, but Poland certainly found a unique way to reciprocate.
A thousand points of light (Photo: Ofer Amram)
As a 60th anniversary gift to the State of Israel, and residents of Tel Aviv specifically, Polish animators and artists turned Tel Aviv‘s city hall into a bright, beautiful canvas.
At nightfall Thursday night, the façade of the city's municipal building became a huge screen, featuring a breathtaking light show created by American designer Bart Kresa, featuring images inspired by Oscar award winning Polish animator Zbig Rybczynski.
Rabin Square transformed (Photo: Ofer Amram)
Tel Aviv’s Mayor Ron Huldai and Polish Prime Minister Tusk laid wreaths at the monument for slain Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, and then headed down into Rabin Square to watch the spectacular audiovisual show, marking the first week of “Polish Year” in Israel, along with enthralled passersby.
Celebration in light and sound (Photo: Ofer Amram)
The stands, lighting and fixtures comprising this impressive display were all adorned with plastic ribbons, designed by Polish artist Daniel Wnuk, emblazoned with the words “Poland” and “Israel”. The music accompanying the light-show was composed by Israeli musician Ady Cohen.
As part of “Polish Year in Israel”, Israeli and Polish artists also launched a wealth of other joint performances and projects, and the Polish Tourism Ministry has actively lobbied to promote Israeli tourism to Poland.
Polish Tourism Ministry personnel manned information booths in Rabin Square Thursday, dressed in colorful traditional garb, adding to the already festive atmosphere.