Honoring Nava Semel 1954-2016

Actress Nava Sarracino, director Vivian Melde, and composer Christel Veraart will travel to Amsterdam at the end of November to participate in a series of events, shows and talks on Israeli culture honoring the late Israeli playwright Nava Semel. Noam Semel (former director general of the Cameri Theatre of Tel Aviv) will be hosting this special memorial symposium in the Netherlands, celebrating the life and work of his wife and internationally renowned playwright. Performances will take place in Amsterdam on November 28, and The Hague on December 2. Segments of The Child Behind the Eyes will be performed, live and on screen, in Turkish, Dutch, English and Hebrew.

In 2016, Sarracino performed Semels play The Child Behind the Eyes in the Pacific Northwest  – these performances featured a lullaby composed by Christel Veraart with lyrics in both English and Yiddish. On hearing Lullaby, Nava Semel commented:

I was very moved by your lullaby. Your music is enchanting and it brought back memories from my grandparents with whom I spoke Yiddish as a child. Although Hebrew is now our language in Israel, the world of the Jewish past still beats within my soul. I’m glad not everything is lost. Thank you for reviving this legacy through your music.

Subsequently Semel adapted the lyrics into Hebrew, continuing the multilingual tradition characteristic of her work. Listen to Hebrew version

More information:


From Alaska with Love – Nava Semel – The Anchorage Press

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