Following the slew of media reports regarding the cancellation of the Motty Steinmetz and Mordechai Ben David concert in Haifa and the recent fiasco with Teveria mayor Ron Kobi at a concert in his city last week, another concert was canceled on Monday evening in Teveria.
The concert wasn’t canceled by the court or the mayor, rather by the performer himself. Yishai Lapidot was scheduled to appear with his concert Oif Shimchas on the promenade of Teveria as a special event for the residents of the city to enjoy. However, Lapidot discovered that the reason his band was asked to come and perform was to enable Mayor Kobi to have a publicity stunt showing a religious band that would perform in front of a mixed audience without a mechitza. Once Lapidot realized that Koby was intending to use this concert to attack the Charedim and their sensitivities, he quickly backed out.
In a letter that Lapidot issued publicly he said: “Our band which has performed many times in Teveria before, and has no problem performing in front of a mixed crowd, was invited to perform once again. We accepted. However, once we found out that the concert was being organized so that the Mayor could make a publicity stunt at the expense of the Chareidi community, we wanted no part of it. We are happy to perform for the residents of Teveria, but we don’t want to be a part of any political maneuvering to attack the Chareidim or how they choose to run their concerts.”
Lapidot got into a heated verbal exchange directly with Kobi on Channel 13 news on Sunday over the issue.
Lapidot stated that he canceled immediately upon finding out that Kobi was attempting to use the concert to attack the Charedim. Kobi claimed that this was false and that the concert was organized simply for the enjoyment of the public.
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Lapidot said that he would agree to perform in Teveria if the Mayor would not bring his cell phone and would not be allowed to hold any live broadcasts of the show on social media or otherwise.
Kobi agreed to this and even said that if Lapidot prefers then he wouldn’t attend the concert at all.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)