|( Doug Holder left/ Harris Gardner right)|
Friday, June 27, 2014
Saturday, June 07, 2014
|Janice Silverman Rebibo|
Rebibo’s poems have been admired for having, “a new strength and the kind of courage that comprises a strategic breakthrough, a stance of both audacity and humor that adds something new to the war of independence of Israel’s consciousness – a revolution of language, spirit and mind.” (critic Menahem Ben). Rebibo is an Israeli poet born in Boston, who began writing in Hebrew while studying Hebrew language and literature at Hebrew College. Dozens of her poems have appeared in Israel’s major newspapers and journals. Recently, an anthology of Israeli writers of English included several of Rebibo's poems and the journal, Iton 77, featured her Hebrew poem, Etzb’a Elohim (God’s finger). The first of her four poetry collections, Zara (a stranger-woman, referring to the figure in Proverbs), was published in 1997. She later served as chief translator for Natan Yonatan, completing Within the Song to Live, his bilingual volume of selected work, following that popular poet’s death in 2004. Zara Betzion: shirim 1984-2006 (a stranger-woman in Zion), a blend of two literary traditions, is Rebibo’s latest collection, which received a President of Israel Award and other prizes. Her poems have been set to music by multi-hit composer, Gidi Koren. In addition to the English libretto for composer Matti Kovler's The Escape of Jonah, Rebibo also collaborated with Kovler to write the libretto for Here Comes Messiah!, performed at Carnegie Hall in 2009 and at Boston’s Jordan Hall in 2010.
Janice Silverman Rebibo's first collection of poetry in English, My Beautiful Ballooning Heart, was published in July, 2013. How Many Edens, Rebibo's most recent poetry chapbook, was published in April, 2014  Using allusions, humor and eroticism, much of Rebibo's poetry shows how relationships are shaped by language, culture, religion, and politics. Her first Hebrew poems appeared in 1984 in the literary supplement of the Hebrew language newspaper Davar on the recommendation of Israeli poet Haim Gouri. Since then, Rebibo’s poems and short stories have appeared frequently in Israel's literary pages and journals  and four books of her Hebrew poetry have been published and characterized in the press as a bold blend of two rich poetic traditions. Zara in Zion: Collected Poems 1984-2006 by Janice Rebibo, published in 2007, includes Hebrew poetry from her three earlier books and new work previously published in Israel's literary journals, as well as a chapter entitled Zion by Itself containing poems Rebibo has written in English. Rebibo has translated Hebrew poetry into English, notably for poet Natan Yonatan. Her poems have been set to music and recorded. Hazman Ozel (time is running out), music by Gidi Koren, was released in 2009 by NMC on a live performance DVD by The Brothers and The Sisters. She has also collaborated with composers on texts and librettos. Here Comes Messiah!, a monodrama for soprano and chamber orchestra by Matti Kovler, libretto by Janice Silverman Rebibo and Matti Kovler, was premiered at Carnegie Hall with soprano, Tehila Nini Goldstein, on May 9, 2009 at the Osvaldo Golijov and Dawn Upshaw Young Artists Concert. Rebibo has edited and translated prose for novelist, Yizhar Smilansky (S. Yizhar), Toronto filmmaker Avi Lev, Prof. Moshe Bar-Asher at the Academy of the Hebrew Language, and for other leading Israelis in literary criticism, linguistics, business, and technology.
In addition to her literary work, Janice Rebibo directed an innovative school-pairing program to promote tolerance, friendship, and cooperation in Israeli society and serves as SPO at a non-profit for the advancement of Hebrew language teaching and learning in North America.