The Israel Philharmonic Orchestra on Tuesday performed a historic concert in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, making it the first show the orchestra has staged in the Arab country in 74 years.
The last time the orchestra performed in an Arab country was in 1945, when Egypt hosted it in the capital city of Cairo.
Michal Herzog, wife of Israel’s President Isaac Herzog, attended the historic performance as a guest of honor.
The recent concert was conducted by the orchestra’s musical director Lahav Shani at the Emirates Palace along with the UAE's Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed and Emirati Culture Minister Nora Al Kaabi.
“I am excited to take part in a historic and groundbreaking event, which represents a new leap forward in the warm relations between our countries, and this time on the cultural level, led by one of our most important cultural symbols - the Israel Philharmonic,” Michal Herzog said.
The concert opened with Israel’s national anthem, Hatikva, which was performed by the Israel Philharmonic in an Arab country for the first time. The UAE and Israel normalized relations by signing the U.S.-negotiated Abraham Accords in 2020.
“Sounds have a special power that moves the soul and connects people, communities, and nations. Sustainable peace between our countries rests, first and foremost, on peace between people,” the first lady noted, adding that Israel and the UAE “will continue to strengthen the future of peace” through economic, cultural, and social foundations.
Reprinted with permission from i24NEWS.