Lipa, meet Corrine: Two leading Jewish musicians from very different communities were brought together in the US as part of an initiative to bring Israeli and Diaspora Jewry closer.
Hassidic star Lipa Schmeltzer and Israeli music legend Corrine Allal took part in the Gesher Leadership Institute and Israel's Ministry of Diaspora Affairs new 'Community' initiative, which aims in bridging the gaps between Jews in Israel and the Diaspora.
After their meeting late last month, they launched into a live performance of Corrine's nationally renowned song 'Ein Li Eretz Acheret' (אין לי ארץ אחרת/I have no other land) – in Hebrew, English and Yiddish.
"They told me I was going to meet a very well-known hassidic singer in America, and that he would sing 'Ein Li Eretz Acheret' and I would play for him," a visibly moved Corrine said at the end of her encounter. with Schmeltzer, the wacky Skverer hassid. "I don't have any words for what happened there. I met a crazily talented person who loves Israel with every fiber – all this as part of this amazing and exciting tour of the Jewish community in New York."
"You touched my heart," Schmeltzer tells Allal in the video, during which the Israeli musician can be seen unsuccessfully fighting back tears.
"I really appreciate Corrine and her work, and I think that precisely these kinds of meetings, of people from both ends of the spectrum, can bring about unity," he said after the meeting.
"I travel the world and see the widespread phenomenon of initiatives whose objective is to increase peace and dialogue between peoples, religions and faiths.
"I think that it is more important than anything else to find a way to increase peace among us, between Jews."