Mira Awad

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Mira Awad
Mira awad.jpg
Background information
Born (1975-06-11) June 11, 1975 (age 38)
Rameh, Galilee,[1] Israel
Origin Tel Aviv, Israel
Occupations Singer, Actress and Songwriter
Instruments Vocals, Guitar
Labels Helicon, Sony Music

Mīrā ’Anwar ‘Awaḍ (Arabic: ميرا أنور عوض‎, /Mīrā ’Anwar ʕawaḍ/Hebrew: מירה אנואר עווד‎,[2] /Mira Anwar Awad/ Bulgarian: Мира Ануар Ауад, born June 11, 1975) is an Israeli Arab singer, actress, and songwriter.[3]

In 2009, she represented Israel at the Eurovision Song Contest along with Jewish Israeli singer Achinoam Nini, singing There Must Be Another Way. She was the first Arab Israeli to represent Israel at Eurovision,[4] singing the first Israeli Eurovision song with Arabic lyrics.

Biography[edit]

Mira ‘Awaḍ was born in Rameh village in Galilee, Israel to an Israeli Arab Christian father from the Galilee (Anwar), a physician by profession, and a Bulgarian Christian mother (Снежанка – Snejanka).[5] She studied at the Rimon School of Jazz and Contemporary Music in Ramat HaSharon. She participated in improvisational workshops in Israel and the UK sponsored by the BIArts, British Council, and studied at the Body Theatre School after receiving a scholarship from the America-Israel Culture Foundation.

‘Awaḍ lives in Tel Aviv, Israel.[6][7]

Acting and singing career[edit]

At the age of 16, she was a soloist for the band Samana, which performed Western rock in Arabic. In the 1990s, she studied at the Rimon School of Jazz and Contemporary Music in Tel Aviv.[8]

Awaḍ became a star on Israeli television after appearing in the sit-com Arab Labor.[9] She also appeared in The Bubble, a film by director Eytan Fox. She sang the theme songs for the films Forgiveness (directed by Udi Aloni), and Lemon Tree (directed by Eran Riklis).

In 2002, she collaborated with Achinoam Nini in a version of the Beatles song "We Can Work It Out." She appeared in an album of live performances of Greek singer George Dalaras. In the summer of 2002 she starred as Eliza Doolittle in the Israeli Opera production of My Fair Lady, directed by Micha Levinson, at the Tel Aviv Performing Arts Center.[10] She also participated in the Israeli children's song festival "Festigal", performing the song Take the Journey.[11] In 2005, ‘Awaḍ collaborated with The Idan Raichel Project on the song Azini (Comfort Me) on Idan Reichel's second album "Mi'ma'amakim."

In 2006, she appeared as an IDF soldier in the Cameri production of a musical adaptation of Maya Arad's novel in verse "Another Place, a Foreign City."[12]

In 2007, she played Amal, an Arab-Israeli human rights lawyer married to Amjad’s Jewish friend, Meir, in the Israeli sitcom "Arab Labor."[13]

In 2008, she played a Palestinian refugee in the stage production of "The Return to Haifa."[14]

‘Awaḍ represented Israel in the Eurovision Song Contest 2009, along with Achinoam Nini (Known outside Israel as Noa).[15] The song won a place in the Eurovision final on May 16, and eventually finished in 16th place with 53 points. ‘Awaḍ had previously tried to represent Israel in Eurovision 2005 with the song Zman (Time), but landed 8th place in the national final.

On May 15 Noa and ‘Awaḍ released a collaborative album There Must Be Another Way featuring both duets and solo tracks. ‘Awaḍ's debut solo album Acrobat (بهلوان, Bahlawan) was released in June, featuring songs she wrote and composed, in collaboration with Israeli guitarist Amos Ever-Hadani.

In 2010, she was part of a panel that chose the song to represent Israel in Eurovision 2010 to be sung by Harel Skaat.

She participated in the fifth season of Rokdim Im Kokhavim, the Israeli version of Dancing with the Stars. Her dancing partner was Dani Yochtman. They reached the semi-final stage of the competition, coming in 4th place.[16]

She also starred in the TV drama Noah's Ark, playing Ruthi.[17]

In 2013, Awad performed with Israeli heavy metal band, Orphaned Land, on their fifth album, All is One, replacing their long time female vocalist, Shlomit Levy.

Political views[edit]

‘Awaḍ identifies herself as Palestinian and Israeli.[18][19] While she has received criticism from both sides of the Palestinian-Israeli divide, she has many fans in both camps.[20][21] The debate has exposed the uneasy position[which?] of the Arab citizens of Israel.[22]

During the 2009 national elections in Israel, ‘Awaḍ voiced support for the Israeli Communist party, Hadash.[23]

Prior to her participation in the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest, Palestinian and Arab intellectuals circulated a petition calling on ‘Awaḍ not to take part in it.[24] The petition failed to deter ‘Awaḍ and Noa, who said, as peace advocates, they were surprised such a petition went around. According to the New York Times, "The antiwar movement, they say, seems to have turned into a Hamas apology force."[25] ‘Awaḍ laughed off the suggestion that she might be used as a fig leaf to cover up the Israeli government's actions. "The government didn't choose to send me to Eurovision. Noa and I agreed because of our eight-year collaboration," she said.

On November 19, 2009, ‘Awaḍ and Noa were awarded the Haviva Reik Peace Prize from Givat Haviva, to honor their commitment to peace and dialogue between Jews and Arabs.[26]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Awad Mira Awad on Myspace
  2. ^ Entries in the 2009 Eurovision Song Contest: Noa & Mira Awad (אחינועם ניני ומירה עוואד)[dead link]
  3. ^ "Mira Awad: Israeli Palestinian Singer and Actress". Tikkun. January 5, 2008. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  4. ^ Someone has to keep Israeli Arabs on the map, Haaretz
  5. ^ Bronner, Ethan (February 25, 2009). "Musical Show of Unity Upsets Many in Israel". The New York Times. Retrieved May 12, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Artists : Mira Awad". Syntorama.com. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  7. ^ "politics: Arab actress to be Israels "My Fair Lady"". israelinsider. January 18, 2002. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  8. ^ Someone has to keep Israeli Arabs on the map, Haaretz
  9. ^ Haaretz article: Talent or traitor?
  10. ^ ברד ירד בדרום ערד, review by Merav Yudilovitch
  11. ^ "Festigal 2002 official site". Go.walla.co.il. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  12. ^ "מקום אחר ועיר זרה" (in Hebrew). עכבר העיר. Retrieved May 15, 2009. 
  13. ^ Someone has to keep Israeli Arabs on the map, Haaretz
  14. ^ MacIntyre, Donald (April 14, 2008). "Israelis stage daring saga of the abandoned Palestinian raised as a Jew". The Independent (London). Retrieved October 6, 2010. 
  15. ^ [1][dead link]
  16. ^ "Mira Awad biography". Goldenland.com. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  17. ^ "Tevat Noah official site". Reshet.ynet.co.il. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  18. ^ "Arab and Jew to sing for peace in Israel at Eurovision". AFP. May 10, 2013. Retrieved March 11, 2013. 
  19. ^ Berita. "Berita Dalam dan Luar Negeri Terbaru di situs plasamsn Berita". News.id.msn.com. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Kobra Tel Aviv – Kobra". svt.se. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Ethan Bronner article: Musical show of unity upsets many in Israel". New York Times. February 25, 2009. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  22. ^ Kraft, Dina (February 2, 2009). "Israeli Eurovision singers condemned as 'traitors'". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  23. ^ "250 Arab artists voice support for Hadash – Israel Culture, Ynetnews". Ynet.co.il. Retrieved September 18, 2012. 
  24. ^ ""Intellectuals and artists of the 1948 Arabs Appeal to Mira Awad Not To Represent Israel in Moscow". Asharq Alawsat. Retrieved April 7, 2013. 
  25. ^ Bronner, Ethan (February 25, 2009). "Musical Show of Unity Upsets Many in Israel". The New York Times. Retrieved May 12, 2010. 
  26. ^ "AVIVA-Berlin". Aviva-berlin.de. Retrieved December 26, 2012. 

External links[edit]

Mira Awad Official Music Label

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Bo'az
with The Fire In Your Eyes
Israel in the Eurovision Song Contest
(with Noa)
2009
Succeeded by
Harel Ska’at
with Milim