In 2011, Hallelujah hosted talents from all over the globe. Each of the participants had an unforgettable experience. Continue reading to get a taste of what the Hallelujah adventure is all about!
Happi Hoffman from Memphis, Tennessee was chosen the Hallelujah 2011 audience favorite. Happie relates of her experience during the contest as one that will remain a part of her forever.
“The group was very close and we stayed in contact even after the end of the competition. Last year, a few of us got together in Amsterdam and now that I am studying in Israel, I often meet the Israelis that were part of the group“.
Voted audience favorite for Hallelujah 2011, she didn’t let her fans down. Happie’s enthusiasm and beautiful voice, won everyone’s attention. Here’s Happie during rehearsals singing "Kmo Notza" by Rami Kleinstein.
Kira Burdman from Wyckoff, New Jersey, relates: “Hallelujah has really given me so much more confidence in myself, and a deeper connection to Israel. The experience was overall wonderful! I do believe that Hallelujah is a great program for aspiring stars.”
At the final concert, listening to the music sway around me, I took a minute to think about how incredible it was to have somehow made it to Israel with these amazing individuals. They had record deals and careers… then there was me: the little high school student from suburban New Jersey, It was these spur of the moment times that made Hallelujah for me.
The camera panned-a giant “Channel 1” monstrosity traveling from face to face, but somehow the music that was being created in front of us caught our eyes more. When the cameraman asked us to sing a well-known melody, instead we forged new territory with music created on the spot. It was only a matter of time before the rest of us found the notes to fill the room - before we joined the guitar and left the world behind. We were thirty 16-26 year olds, hand-picked from all around the globe, speaking different languages, with different customs. They told us that what joined us together was Judaism. Yes we were all Jews, but the thing that really connected us was right here, bursting from our lungs and filling the air.”
Listen to Kira during rehearsals singing “Al Kol Ele” by Naomi Shemer
Mara Abramson, from Michigan, says that the month she spent in Israel with Hallelujah will long remain one of the most important and defining experiences of her life.
“I did everything I could as to make sure I wouldn't come home with any regrets- I paid attention to where I was and asked questions about the land, my surroundings, and the local way of life. I worked on my Hebrew and came back with a much better sounding “reysh” and a head start on my Hebrew 101 class, and I made friends that I know I will keep for the rest of my life. The experience I had is one that I would never replace; I made friends with young Jews from countries all around the world. Not to mention I found myself becoming extremely close with several Israelis my age. They showed me what it's like to be a teen growing up on the other side of the world. I finally felt like I was a real part of Israel. ”, says Mara who sang "Melech" by Miri Mesika.