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The Dance Experience

Dancers and markidim are welcome to submit articles about Israeli folk dancing using the form.
The sole responsibility for the content of the articles lies with the authors.


We need you!IFDA 10.2.15 
Dear Dancers,

We need you!

As we all know, the activities of our organization are created and executed by volunteers. We spend money out of our own pockets, if necessary.
Operation and maintenance of the website and radio broadcasts is a fixed expense and our only source o finance is the contributions from dancers.
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Musing About The Never Ending Stream of New Israeli DancesPhil Moss 24.12.16 
Thought I'd share this piece I just posted on the internet:

For some unknown reason I am motivated to share some thoughts as we approach the end of another year of Israeli Dancing. No brilliant new insights here particularly, just my current feeling about the State of the Union of Israeli Dancing.
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ARE YOU A DANCE-AHOLIC?Loui Tucker 27.9.13 
Is dancing taking over our life? Have you heard whispers that you're becoming addicted to dance? Are you afraid that you or a loved one is becoming a dance-aholic? Take this simple test, or take it on behalf of someone you care about. However painful it might be, it's time you faced the truth. Count 1 point for every YES answer...   To the rest of the article
 
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Looking for a Dance Partner?IFDA 11.9.12 
Are you looking for an Israeli Folk dance partner during a visit in Israel?
Are you looking for a permanent partner around the world?

You may publish your request to find a partner on our website.

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Our new internet-based radio station IFDA 27.2.13 
In line with the services which we provide to dancers and dance instructors, we have decided to run a legally operated internet-based radio station which will broadcast Israeli folk dance music, alongside a varied range of other programs. The radio station is already in operation and broadcasts the songs and tunes of Israeli folk dances 24 hours a day.

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A Piece of My MindIFDA 6.12.10 
Israeli- folk dancers around the world, greetings!
Do you have something on your mind that you would like to share with us here in Israel regarding the all-encompassing activity of Israeli folk dancing ?
Here is the right place to do it; express your thoughts, impressions, experiences; tell us about similar activities in your home-country; feel free to ask and to be informed of what’s going on in our "back-yard."
We ARE the “rokdim" (the dancers) - the recreational-Israeli-folk-dancers from Israel. We are eager to share with you our enthusiasm and love of Israeli folk dances!
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KARMIEL FESTIVALIFDA 11.9.12 
IMPROVEMENT OF CONDITIONS AT THE KARMIEL FESTIVAL
Irgun Harokdim was created in 2006 by a group of 14 dancers who voluntarily made it their business to work for the preservation of folk dancing in Israel and worldwide. Its goals included improving the welfare of the dancers at dance sessions and festivals. In 2007, Irgun Harokdim was officially established as a registered Amuta, a non-profit organization.
One of the Amuta's objectives was to improve the conditions at the Karmiel Dance Festival for the benefit of the dancers attending the festival.
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Celebrating a Pillar of the Israel Folk Dance CommunityRick18.2.12 
Yonathan Karmon's 80th birthday was celebrated on Sunday, February 5th at Pnina Klein's dance session at Beit Rozen in Ramat Gan.   To the rest of the article
 
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In the Slippers Corner Tzippy and Adi AtiramAdi & Atara4.11.11 
I arrived at the tennis courts during the 2011 Karmiel Dance Festival to watch the performances of dancers on wheels and of groups described as “dancers with special needs”. The performances were very moving and the air was filled with a sense of unconditional love and boundless giving. The special needs dancers touched the heart chords of the spectators and me in particular. Fighting back tears, I was thinking of how these families are daily fighting almost insurmountable difficulties. We decided to interview Tzippy and Adi Atiram. Our goal was to learn more about this field of dancing and the special requirements needed to work with special dancers.   To the rest of the article
 
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Greetings from Adi HabadAdi Habad7.10.11 
Dear Dancers,
The past year was filled with joy and studded with dancing events, marathons and festivals. In other words, it was a year filed with color, sound and movement.
During the past year, the Dancers Association continued efforts to advance its objectives: improve the welfare of the dancers and create a supportive and pleasant atmosphere at dance sessions. We placed particular emphasis on the health of the dancers. In addition, we worked to develop tools to make information and knowledge regarding folk dancing easily accessible to all the dancers and dance teachers.
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July Review of the Israeli Forums Givaa Tlula15.8.11 
This summary is dedicated to the Karmiel Dance Festival: experiences, dances, achievements, and conclusions.
The 2011 Karmiel Dance Festival is now behind us. It was a celebration of non-stop dancing with the best instructors from all over the country and over 5,000 participants from Israel and around the world, not to mention the many and varied dance performances staged throughout the Karmiel Festival.
The opening performance was truly impressive. "On the Grass," a tribute to 60 years of IDF performing troupes, was performed by 2,000 dancers. They were joined by guest artists such as Yehoram Gaon, The Reim Duo, Ofira Gluska, Harel Skaat, Sharon Haziz, Dorit Reuveni, IDF troupes, and others.
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Let Us Dance in Peace and Quiet Adi Habad11.8.11 
In the wake of multiple complaints about the issue of the loud volume at which music is played during folk dance sessions and its health hazards, acoustic volume became a subject for the Dancer’s Association to tackle. This year during the Karmiel Dance Festival, we led an intensive campaign to increase awareness among dancers of the health hazards high volume possesses.
Our efforts were well received. People were attentive to our explanations. They expressed support, encouragement and appreciation of our efforts on a variety of issues, but particularly for our efforts regarding this issue, which is of great concern to many of us.
We have been dealing intensively with this subject for the past three years; we have studied the matter; we have acquired measuring instruments and assessed the noise level at many dance sessions. Sadly, the results of these measurements confirm the validity of the complaints. We discovered that the decibels of the music played at dance sessions does indeed exceed the acceptable norms established by WHO, the World Health Organization.
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June Review of the Israeli Forums Givaa Tlula8.7.11 
The month of June was marked by preparations for the yearly Israeli Dance Festival in Karmiel scheduled for July 12-14, 2011. On the Irgun Harokdim site you’ll find details of the program, a listing of the different dance sessions and shows, tickets and transportation info, and other useful information. On Facebook, Tapuz forum, and on Irgun Harokdim’s site, many dancers voiced their discontent with this year’s timetable for the program. The main criticism was directed at the fact that Thursday is packed with shows and dance sessions, all held simultaneously, while Wednesday’s program is relatively dull. The issues evoked different opinions and questions. Is it right to include in the Festival’s program non-traditional Israeli dances, for example Hip-Hop? It is a good idea to split the dance sessions between the Matnas and Rabin Halls which are located far apart? You may add your reaction via the following link:   To the rest of the article
 
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In the Slippers Corner with Yoav Ashriel Atara & Adi 4.7.11 
Yo’av, a caring and sensitive man, one who is full of love, has a vision. Tens and even thousands of dancers and dance instructors have grown up with him and learned from him. Here in a special interview is Yo’av Ashriel, the dance instructor, creator, and choreographer, who believed in his ability to create something out of nothing.   To the rest of the article
 
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In the Slippers Corner with Rafi Ziv Adi & Atara 9.6.11 
Raft Ziv Hosts the Givatron in Nes Ziona (Original date of publication September 5th 2010)
A few months ago, a new dance session opened in the Nes Ziona Sports Center. The new session is under the management and instruction of Rafi Ziv who is considered to be one of the leading instructors and choreographers in Israel. The center itself is stunning in its quality and without doubt, it is one of the most beautiful halls for folk dancing in all Israel. The extraordinary environmental conditions include easy accessibility via Road 431, amazing air conditioning, the rich array of refreshments throughout the evening, plenty of parking, extraordinary maintenance of the hall by the hall manager and the maintenance staff, exemplary cleanliness in the restrooms, and more, not to mention Rafi's extraordinary repertoire. Hence, it is no wonder, that within a relatively short time the dance session in Nes Ziona has become one of the biggest and foremost in the country. On September 14, Rafi Ziv will be hosting the Givatron in the Sports Center in Nes Ziona. In honor of that occasion, I decided to speak with him, outside his session, “in slippers” (or dance shoes, if you wish).
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Health Hazards of High Acoustic Volume at Harkadot Adi Habad 2.6.11 
Each one of us has encountered a moment in the course of dancing at an Israeli dance session, a harkadot, where the volume reached alarming levels. It was to such a degree that screeching voices were heard coming from throats of quite a number of participants. They were demanding that the instructor lower, to a reasonable level, the volume of the music. Most of us, dancers, feel – and rightly so – that high sound volume spoils our enjoyment of dancing. It is not only an inconvenience; it is a real nuisance which causes short-term and lasting damage to our hearing. Alas, the damage to our hearing is only one of a series of health hazards afflicting the dance community by the above mentioned auditory phenomenon; these hazards have been described in several medical publications in Israel and abroad.   To the rest of the article
 
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In the Slippers Corner with Gila Paz Adi & Atara 24.5.11 
Gila Creates a "Goldmine" of Folkdance
This time we met with Gila Paz, the dance instructor whose name means “gold” in Hebrew. She has created dances which have become leading hits in all the sessions all over Israel. Gila exudes a personal charm with tranquility, pleasantness and humility. She is welcomed on every dance floor with applause. Her special dances, which bring great enjoyment to the dancers, are Quizas (Perhaps), Gan Chorpi (Winter Garden), and Besheket Kazeh (This Type of Quiet.)
Gila, where did all this start?
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April Review of the Israeli Forums Givaa Tlula8.5.11 
During the month of April we celebrated the third anniversary of our website. We congratulate the members of Irgun Harokdim who have voluntarily and diligently worked on the routine upkeep of the site. Over the past year, www.harokdim.org underwent formative changes resulting in a more user-friendly setup. Special thanks go to Yardena, the person in charge of maintaining the site, for creating a special festive quiz in honor of our anniversary.   To the rest of the article
 
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Three Years On-lineIFDA17.4.11 
This April 2011, the Israeli Folk Dancers Association, Irgun Harokdim, proudly marks three years on-line at www.harokdim.org –three years of continuous service to the world wide Israeli dance community.

We are constantly working to develop and enhance the contents of our website by sharing with you interesting issues relevant to dancers everywhere. This year, we have worked to improve the English version of our site for the sake of our overseas users. We initiated the translations of the Hebrew forums on a regular basis, began a series to introduce the choreographers to you in a very personal way, and created a search engine for visitors looking to dance in Israel. And, we continued our aim to share the best and most up-to-date stories regarding Israeli folk dance here in Israel.

What are we missing? We want you to tell us. We call upon you to enlist as supporters of our site, submit your opinions and give us feed-back on the different issues raised. We are here for you. We are here for the benefit of the entire Israeli Folk Dance community. Join us.
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March Review of the Israeli Forums Givaa Tlula6.4.11 
March, the month of Adar where Purim falls, was a happy month of dancing festivals and lots of costumes. Several dance sessions held competitions for the most beautiful costume. There were even costumes which suggested dance songs; a lot of effort went into the costumes; there were prizes and photographs. Why doesn't Purim come twice a year?   To the rest of the article
 
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Thoughts from My Heart Uri Givony 17.3.11 
Translated by Zofia Shiber
Let me start with the Hebrew saying so appropriate this week of Purim, “Not as much as I hate Haman – I love Mordechai more." That being said, I wish to address myself mainly to the instructors, in Israel and abroad, concerning trends within the genre of Israeli folk dancing - trends which have recently gained momentum and which many of us dancers here in Israel find disturbing.
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February 2011 Review of the ForumsGivaa Tlula 13.3.11 
Summary for February Forums
What has kept the dancers busy this month?

• Does the wave of price increases in the economy have to lead to an increase in the entrance fee to a dance session? Or, precisely because of the price increases, should the admission price remain the same? Iceman is asking the dance instructors to lower their prices!
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In the Slippers Corner with Moshe Telem Adi & Atara 9.3.11 
“I, Moshe Telem, am following in my furrow…” (Telem means furrow)

This time we met with one of the most veteran and most famous dance instructors in the world of folk dancing, Moshe Telem.
We have always regarded Moshe Telem as one of the most radical dance instructors; he is imbued with a love of Israel, of working on the land and everything that is good and beautiful in our country, including a world concept of collectivism, the love of man and helping one's fellowman. This concept accompanied us even before we spoke with him in depth and before we saw his character up close. This feeling only intensified after our conversation with him. We learned that this is really a genuine person who earns his living from agriculture and who does his work with great love. But, we get the impression that his love of folk dancing is no less and perhaps even exceeds his love of his daily work. Moshe Telem is a farmer with the soul of a dancer, who loves folk dancing without any reservations.
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January 2011 Review of the ForumsGivaa Tlula 10.2.11 
Summary for January - the month of Shvat
Written by Givaa Tlula; Translated by Maxine Cohen
What did we have this month?
In honor of the “New Year for Trees,” all the dance sessions played songs where the dances symbolized the festival. For example, songs about trees, forests, blossoms were selected. At one of the dance sessions they even went so far as to conduct a Tu B’ Shvat Seder. They read a program written by Maya Geva, "The Wedding Queen." Maya runs the "wheeldance" sessions which are specially designed for standing dancers and their partners, dancers in wheelchairs.
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December 2010 Review of the ForumsGivaa Tlula 3.1.11 
The month of December is marked by Hanukah, the Festival of Lights, which is normally adorned by happy celebrations filled with joyous dancers. Alas, this year the atmosphere was marred by the disastrous fire on Mt. Carmel which claimed more than 40 lives and severely injured many others. Our sympathy goes to the families of the victims; we embrace them warmly. In this month's forums, the often repeated question of too many newly composed dances surfaced. The links below attacked this issue from different points of view. Can the multitude of new dances contribute to the status of those dances considered "assets of permanent value?”   To the rest of the article
 
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At Home With Tuvia TishlerVerd and Adi 2.1.11 
At Home With the Dance Instructor: Tuvia Tishler

"IN THOSE DAYS THERE WAS NO KING IN ISRAEL PEOPLE WOULD DO WHAT THEY LIKED…."

This time we met with Tuvia Tishler, one of Israel’s leading dance instructors and choreographers; Tuvia has become a household name. We asked him to talk about himself as a choreographer and dance instructor, as well as his opinion of several problems which bother dancers and dance instructors alike.


Tuvia, tell us a little bit about yourself and how you started out in folk dancing.

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What\'s New in the Israeli Forums November 2010?Givaa Tlula 12.12.10 
Preparations for Hannukah are underway; the Festival of Lights is celebrated this week; it’s a festival full of light, festive dance sessions, as well as – donuts! Yum! The Irgun HaRokdim site has gathered the information about all the special dance sessions and listed them in one organized table. Our thanks go to Florence and Dror Shalom. Instructors wishing to add dance sessions to the table are invited to do this via the website.   To the rest of the article
 
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What\'s New in the Israeli Forums October 2010?Givaa Tlula 18.11.10 
What did we discuss in October, in Cheshvan, a month without holidays and festivals?
The flood of new dances was discussed. The problem of the flood of new dances returns every month with a new point of view. Is there a dancer or dance instructor who knows all the dances? Probably not. Maybe Michal Bachar, or Iris, knows? Is this a problem in all dance sessions?
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An interview with Victor GabayAdi Habad 9.11.10 
Victor Gabay, 49, dance instructor, choreographer, and happily married father of three, lives in a well groomed house in Beit Dagan.
How were you introduced to the folk dancing; how did it all begin?
I was exposed to folk dances at the Hanoar HaOved VeHaLomed youth movement where I had been very active as a guide. From time to time we had a visit from Ezra Cadir, an accordianist; we danced while he played. Afterward, I continued to dance at a school guided by Michael Barzily. In 1982, I went through a course for dance instructors at the Agricultural School in Camp 80 with Tamar Aligaon. Later, I danced in the dance troupe of Bat Yam and was asked to manage the Moetzet Hapoalim troupe. At our first performance, a gathering of hundreds of IDF officers, we won much applause and appreciation.
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What is New in the Israeli Forums September 2010? Givaa Tlula 24.10.10 
There were many holidays in September and several festive dance sessions were held prior to the New Year. Unfortunately, many dance sessions had to be cancelled because of the holidays. Dror and Florence used an organized table on the Dancers Association web site to update the dancers about all of the holiday changes. Thanks go to both of them!   To the rest of the article
 
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Pre-Chagigah Warm-up at Temple Judea Mitzpah Rick Rosen 19.10.10 
We came to Skokie for a family Bat Mitzvah weekend, but arrived a day early so we could dance Thursday evening with the local group and the visiting crowd who were arriving from all over the world. Many dancers had flown into O’Hare International Airport in Chicago on their way to Chagigah, the three day dance camp held at Camp Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin, about a 2 hour drive from here. We revisited with Colin, who had come from London to run the sound systems at camp.   To the rest of the article
 
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The Epic of Hora Eilat on the Great Continent of North AmericaHora Eilat 27.9.10 
I was recently sent to work in Montreal, Canada and while there I planned to dance. It has been a week since I returned to Israel and recovered from jet-lag; now it’s time to tell about my dance experience on the great continent.
Peter Smolash, Montreal - Monday
The first harkada I attended was at the JCC in Montreal on a Monday.
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What\'s New in the Israeli Forums August 2010?Givaa Tlula 14.9.10 
We had another month of dancing, festivals and dance camps during the hot month of August - hot in different ways - the Hungarian Festival, the 2010 Fun Camp, the European Dance and others. You can view the video and photos of these events on Facebook.
Those dancers who attended festivals outside of Israel have reported on the excitement of dancing outside of Israel. Below you will find the report about North America by "Hora," a dancer, who uses the nick-name "Hora Eilat" in the forums.
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Special Summary of Karmiel Festival 2010 in the Israeli Forums Givaa Tlula 26.8.10 
Why and how can the dance festival be the focus of the dancers year after year? What is the magic of this mass harkada? link press coverage
The Dance Festival was held in Karmiel for the 24th time, almost a half century anniversary; we had three packed days, 80 shows, thousands of dancers in several facilities and many dances and dancers. Also this year, thousands of participants, visitors, many dancers and several markidim, came to the city, to dance or to watch the outdoor entertainment. Even with the heat and humidity of July, it was wonderful to see a lot of Israeli residents and guests dancers from abroad dancing "Ani Noladti LaShalom" (I Was Born for Peace) and "Eretz, Eretz, Eretz.”
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Karmiel Dance FestivalRotem 24.8.10 
It was my first time attending the Karmiel Festival this year, and I had an amazing time. I arrived around 2AM Tuesday night/Wednesday morning and danced until about 6AM. A great way to start a dance festival if you ask me!
The next two days were full of dancing. There was something there for everyone. There were two or three different dance sessions going on simultaneously, so I never had any problems finding something I wanted to do, and there were also all sorts of performances to see, things to buy, and food to eat.
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What\'s New in the Israeli Forums July 2010?Givaa Tlula 4.8.10 
This month was marked by festivals and Israeli folk dance camps: the Toronto IsReal Dance Festival, the Czech Dance Festival, England’s Machol Europe, Mechol HaShalom, France’s Hora Or, Belgium’s BeYachad, and others. Israel dancing is all over the world map! The highlight of these festivals is the three days of Karmiel Festival.   To the rest of the article
 
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Israeli Dancing in London with ColinRick Rosen 7.8.10 
No matter where we are in the world, we never miss a chance to dance at a completely different Israeli dance session. My wife has visited sessions in Orlando, Chicago, and Baltimore. This year alone, we danced in Houston, led dancing in Midland, Texas, and went to 3 different harkadot in Israel.
Press for more
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Evolution of Rikudey AmDaniele Saffar 3.8.10 
Although I enjoyed the Karmiel festival (because I am a dance addict) I couldn't help noticing upsetting facts. In the last two years fewer and fewer choreographers have attended the festival and it has had an impact on the choice of dances that were played. In fact, the same dances were played over and over again in the workshops and harkadot.
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What\'s New in the Israeli Forums June 2010?Givaa Tlula 20.7.10 
Thank you for all the positive comments about last month’s summary.
Tapuz presented a number of interesting topics:
1. A person new to dancing wanted to know more about the creation of new dances. Who decides it is time to create a new dance? Who determines who will actually create the new dance? What determines which dances will reach the harkadot? Why there are so many new dances? Veteran dancers provided some detailed, interesting answers.
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Israeli Dance in PolandGivaa Tlula 25.6.10 
I have a friend on facebook, Kinga Kalupa, who dances Israeli dance in a group of Polish people, most of whom are not Jewish; they love to dance Israeli dances, dance twice a week, and go to any Israeli dance camp held in Europe. Last October they had an Israeli dance camp in Poland and invited Kobi Michaeli. They hope have a camp again this year.
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