Thursday, March 5, 2009

"New York Times":

Boycott demonstration against Israeli dance troupe, due to "Israel's actions in Gaza".

"Israeli Dance Troupe May Draw Protest"

Published: March 4, 2009


On the Web at:

The Brooklyn Academy of Music is bracing for protests of the Batsheva Dance Company, an Israeli troupe, this week.

In recent weeks during a North American tour, Batsheva, which was to begin a run of performances on Wednesday night, has been dogged by small demonstrations and calls for a boycott over Israel’s actions in Gaza.

Fatima Kafele
, a spokeswoman for the Brooklyn Academy, said a “small group” had asked the police for a permit to demonstrate on Thursday. She said she did not know the group’s identity. Batsheva and its artistic director, Ohad Naharin, are prominent in the modern dance world and are respected by many critics.

Mr. Naharin, through Ms. Kafele, declined to be interviewed but issued a statement on Wednesday saying he forgives and understands “the frustration” and people who “want to fight for human rights.” But he said that boycotting a dance company could not make a difference, and that such energy should be channeled “into getting moderate powers and people on both sides to talk to each other.”