Jaffa Gate


Jaffa Gate


Folk Sounds |  Music Fair


Folk Sounds Stage


אNa'am Ensemble

A Jerusalem ensemble based in Ein Kerem. The music of Na'am ("Yes" in Arabic) expresses the ideal of taking the positive view – saying "Yes" to the experiences that come our way. The ensemble creates local "world music" incorporating the styles that exert an influence on its musicians – jazz, klezmer, classical Western and Arabic music, rhythms of the Maghreb, of Iraq, of the Galilee, and of Latin America.

On stage:

Nur Akawi – oud

Mati Bobek – clarinet

Noam Bartov – bass

Daniel Tager – drums and percussion

Adva Schwebel – guitar


Date: 31 March, two shows during the evening



Gole Anar

Gole Anar performs modern and authentic Persian music before Iranian audiences in Israel and abroad.


On stage:

Sevika Cohen – vocals

Ronen Golan – electronic keyboard and violin

Manuher Balazade – tar

Zohar Golan – zarb and tempo


Date: 31 March, two shows during the evening



Samra Ensemble – premier performance at the Festival!

The Samra Ensemble was founded as an initiative of the Association for Society and Culture that works to preserve and cultivate the Yemenite Jewish heritage. The ensemble is composed of experienced and professional musicians who play both authentic Mizrahi and modern instruments.

The ensemble musicians create new arrangements for classical Yemenite works, representing both the Jewish diwan and traditional Yemenite poetry. The ensemble also offers new interpretations of the songs of Yemenite artists who were active in Israel during the 1950s and 1960s.


On stage:

Asaf Rabi – guitar, bass and vocals

Inon Darwish – vocals

Gilad Hazan – oud, violin and vocals

Ori Naveh – percussion and vocals

Ofer Mizrahi – electric guitar and trumpet

Yarom Ita – drum kit and vocals


Date: 31 March, two shows during the evening


Rembetiko – Greek Blues

Songs from the marvelous rembetiko tradition.

On stage:

Tomer Katz – bouzouki, oud, vocals

Itzik Gann – lira

Nimrod Atzmon – guitar


Date: 1 April, two shows during the evening


Insera Band

The musicians of the Insera Band are graduates of the Yared School of Music, Addis Ababa University, and are known as premier artists in the Ethiopian music world. The band specializes in producing authentic music and lyrics in the styles of Gojjam, Wollo, Tigray, Oromo, Welayta, Gurage and other regions.

On stage:

Wessen Zelealem – vocals

Aduni Goade – masenqo (Ethiopian violin), krar (a type of guitar)

Alemeta Zelealem – washint (cane flute)

Genetu Getahon – electronic keyboard

Demelash Babil, Nezanet – dancers


Date: 1 April, two shows during the evening




A-mechaye! extends the boundaries of traditional Jewish klezmer into the Middle East and the Balkans. A vibrant Jerusalem-based group that plays a refreshing mix of original material and new arrangements of klezmer classics from the shtetl.

On stage:

Mati Bobek – clarinet

Yoav Kolombus – contrabass

Vera Gorenshteyn – violin

Roi Fadida – guitars

Tzurit Yair – percussion


Date: 1 April, two shows during the evening



Gypsy Spirit

Ensemble that specializes in music of the Spanish Romani tradition and performs the world over, offering outstanding interpretations of Gypsy Kings songs and more.


Date: 2 April, two shows during the evening



Dialna ("Ours" in Moroccan-Arabic) was founded in Jerusalem by five young musicians seeking to revive the music of the North African Jewish communities.

Dialna's exuberant and invigorating music blurs cultural boundaries between audience members and makes everyone feel welcome at the party.

On stage:

Elad Levi – violin

Hanan Kadosh – oud

Hagai Bilitzky – contrabass

Hillel Amsallem – percussion

Netanel Ben-Shetrit – darbouka


Date: 2 April, two shows during the evening


The good guys

This band has been in existence for nearly 20 years and embraces a variety of styles, including American folk, country, rock and roll, pop and more, from the 1960s to the present. The band's performances are uplifting and exhilarating.


Date: 2 April, two shows during the evening



The Noa Vax Project – Granny Memi

Percussion artist Noa Vax invites the public to embark on a journey of rhythm and sound, from past to present and from Turkey to Israel.

The show features Ladino songs and combines original material with new interpretations of songs and melodies from the Turkish tradition.

The Noa Vax Project – Granny Memi has participated in a number of festivals, such as Festival Isha and the Oud Festival, to great acclaim.

On stage:

Idan Toledano – oud, guitar, accordion, vocals

Niri Sadeh – ney, flute, clarinet, vocals

Noa Vax – percussion, vocals


Date: 3 April, two shows during the evening





An all-woman band inspired by Jewish sources from across the Middle East. The band uses period instruments and distinctive arrangements in its quest to revive original and traditional music.

On stage:

Rakefet Amsalem – vocals

Ofri Zidner – bağlama and guitar

Noya Yifat – tar

Itziart – flute

Tsvia Tsur – percussion


Date: 3 April, two shows during the evening



Istiklal Trio

The Istikal Trio – groove and traditional music with a Turkish twist!

A unique musical experience that combines instrumental pieces from the classical Turkish tradition with original material inspired by the Near and Far East. The Istiklal Trio has performed at festivals in Israel and abroad.

On stage:

Ariel Qassis – kanun

Yaniv Taichman – oud, guitar

Noa Vax – percussion


Date: 3 April, two shows during the evening







Music Fair


The Sounds of the Old City Festival, in cooperation with Hatav Hashmini, invite festivalgoers to a music fair extravaganza – CDs and DVDs by sought-after artists and musical instruments by the finest manufacturers, at unprecedented prices.

You are invited to visit the main performance compound at Jaffa Gate and purchase musical instruments, discs and albums at special prices – up to 80% off – courtesy of the Hatav Hashmini chain of music stores.



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