Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Sad News

Ehud Manor, one of Israel’s most important and beloved lyricists and translators, died last night of heart failure. Here are reports from the Jerusalem Post, Ynet and Haaretz.

Allison Kaplan Sommer of An Unsealed Room writes about her connection with Ehud Manor.

I had a bit of contact with him, too. Shortly after I arrived in Israel, he called the office where I was working as a secretary, and I was delighted that I had actually gotten to speak to the man whose work I admired so much. Years later, he graciously played a track from my CD on his radio program. (I didn’t hear it, but a friend of mine did and told me about it later.) I had hoped to work with him someday, even on one small project or one brief program, but unfortunately it never happened. I came close to it once, though.

In 1995, Ehud Manor and Rivka Michaeli co-hosted a live radio program called “What Did We Have There?” The program, which aired for an hour on weekday mornings, featured a segment where Manor and Michaeli played messages that listeners left on the show’s voice mail. Since Purim was approaching, I called the voice mail and sang my Hebrew translation of a feminist Purim song, and to my surprise they played it on the air the following week. Then, to my utter astonishment, they called me at home several days later to tell me how much they had enjoyed it. Because I was shocked speechless, I barely managed to tell Ehud Manor that I had admired his work since childhood.

They gave me the number of the studio and told me I could call the program whenever it was on the air. Unfortunately, it was cancelled several weeks later. I never got the chance.

Everyone I know who knew Ehud Manor agreed that he was a mensch. He will be sorely missed.

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