This week we dive into the musical products – and reflections – of the cultural diversity generated by the rise of the Zionist movement and the creation of the State of Israel. A cultural diversity met, and accompanied all along, by war.

Army ensembles (lehaqot tzvayiot) have been a forum for the creation of globalized cultural identities. It may seem paradoxical, but it really isn’t, that music and theater ensembles sponsored by the Israeli Defense Forces (known in Hebrew by the acronym of Tzahal), espoused an anti-war culture on the wake of the youth movements in the United States and Europe since the 1960’s. Yet, these are music ensembles with such “sexy” names as “Fighting Pioneer Youth Ensemble” (Lehaqat NaChaL), or the “Ensemble of the Northern Command”…

See for example Shir la-shalom (A Song to Peace) by the Fighting Pioneer Youth:

And its source of inspiration, from the musical, Hair: