DAMARI, SHOSHANA (1922–2006), Israeli singer. Damari was born in the town of Damar, in Yemen, and moved to Palestine with her family at the age of two. She showed musical promise from an early age, accompanying her mother's singing at family and social gatherings on percussion. When she was 13 she joined the Shulamit school of drama in Tel Aviv and starred in her first concert in Tel Aviv three years later. In 1943 she was among the founding members of the Li La Lo theater company, and, one year later, appeared in the theater's debut production, "The Barber of Tel Aviv." Damari's principle contribution to the show was her rendition of "Laylah ba-Gilboa" ("A Night on Mount Gilboa") and, although the song was not a hit, Damari's soft Yemenite-inflected tones and richly textured voice stood out from the efforts of her European-born co-performers.
Damari came to national prominence following her performance in the theater company's second show, Ra'ayon beli La Lo, in which she sang "Kalani'ot" ("Anemones"), which was a huge hit and became Damari's signature song. The music for "Kalani'ot" was composed by Moshe *Wilensky, who, despite being born in Poland and a graduate of the Warsaw Academy of Music, incorporated Yemenite motifs in the song and in other material he wrote for Damari in subsequent years. Damari and Wilensky maintained their creative and fruitful partnership into the 1950s, when Wilensky began presenting a radio program called Pizmon va-Zemer ("Chorus and Song"). Every show included a song Wilensky wrote specially for Damari and was performed by her. These included such hits as "Ha-Ro'ah ha-Ketanah min ha-Gai" ("The Little Shepherdess from The Valley") and "Le-Or ha-Zikhronot" ("For the Memories").
In the mid-1950s Damari enjoyed a brief movie career, appearing in some of Israel's first movies, such as Hill 24 Doesn't Answer and Be-Ein Moledet ("Without a Homeland"), which told the story of the Damari family's move from Yemen to Palestine in the 1920s.
In the late 1940s Damari embarked on the first of many successful tours abroad. In 1947 she appeared at the famed Village Vanguard music club in New York and later performed in Canada and Cuba. In the 1960s and 1970s she appeared at many of the world's most prestigious music venues, including New York's Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center. Despite being closely identified with her Yemenite roots, and classic Israeli songs, Damari also performed in other languages, including Spanish and even Yiddish.
In 1987 Damari's career was revived when she joined forces with crooner Boaz Sharabi, whose family also emigrated from Yemen, and the following year she received the country's ultimate accolade when she was awarded the Israel Prize. Damari subsequently appeared and recorded with Israel's other senior diva, Yaffa *Yarkoni, and with singer-songwriter Matti *Caspi. In 2005, the 83-year-old Damari surprised many by contributing two songs to young ethno-rock star Idan Reichel's second album Mi-Ma'amakim ("From the Deep").
Throughout her long career Damari set the standard for generations of young performers, both for her stage presence and her unparalleled vocal delivery.
[Barry Davis (2nd ed.)]
"Damari, Shoshana." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Encyclopedia.com. (January 17, 2019). https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/damari-shoshana
"Damari, Shoshana." Encyclopaedia Judaica. . Retrieved January 17, 2019 from Encyclopedia.com: https://www.encyclopedia.com/religion/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/damari-shoshana
Encyclopedia.com gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).
Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.
Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, Encyclopedia.com cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use Encyclopedia.com citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:
Modern Language Association
The Chicago Manual of Style
American Psychological Association
- Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most Encyclopedia.com content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
- In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.