Noa will open the fifth edition of Teatro Festival Italia in Naples tomorrow night with a concert at Teatro San Carlo. It is no coincidence that the event, which has now become one of the most keenly anticipated on the European scene, will begin with a performance by the Israeli singer, as this year's Festival reserves special attention for Israel and, in particular, the country's dance scene.
Noa will pay tribute to the city of Naples and its everlasting music, through which she took a long journey with her 2006 album "Napoli-Tel Aviv", which featured a string of classic Neapolitan songs translated into Hebrew. The singer was born in Israel to Yemeni Jewish parents, who took her to the US at the age of 2, only to see her return to Israel at 17. She has gone deeper into her research on Neapolitan music and, accompanied by the Solis String Quartet, will perform "Noapolis", in which she revisits classics such as "Torna a Surriento" or "Era de maggio".
But the evening with Noa is only the curtain-raiser of a festival that lasts from June 7 to 24, before returning after the summer break between September 25 and 30. There will be 24 days of events in the city overall, with more than 110 performances in 17 venues ranging from classical theatres to more unusual settings. There were performances last year in the underground caves of the old town, while this year will see a stage erected in the Pausilypon Archaeological Park in Coroglio, overlooking the sea. New elements in this year's festival include a focus on foreign countries. The Teatro Festival will look closely at Israel, with six days of Israeli dance, which is currently at the height of its popularity. Through a series of dance troops. the Teatro Festival will attempt to provide an unusual and original overview of an area on the edge of both Europe and the Middle East. Two of today's biggest Israeli dance groups, the ''Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company'' and ''Vertigo Dance Company'', will perform in Naples, as will the promising young choreographer, Dafi Altabeb.
The Vertigo Dance Company will stage two performances: Null (at 20:00 on June 19 at the Teatro San Ferdinando) and Birth of the Phoenix (at 20:00 on June 21 at the Teatro Pausilypon), both directed by Noa Wertheim. The first show is a European debut and will see dancers immersed in water, while Birth of the Phoenix is the result of a project looking at the dialogue between humans and the environment, and will be a site-specific choreography. Two performances will also be staged by the Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company, which takes ''Bein Kodesh Le' Hol'' (Sacred and Profane on June 19 and "If at all" on June 22 to the Teatro Politeama, both shows directed by the choreographer Rami Be'er. The six days of Israeli dance will end with Dafi Altabeb's "Higher Expectation", at the Teatro Pausilypon on June 23, which pays tribute to Italian melodrama with dancers performing to the strains of Maria Callas.
Other events at the Teatro Festival include the new project by Robert Wilson, who will perform the Italian premiere of his musical show "The Makropoulos Case" and Peter Brook's "The Suit", also for on stage in Italy for the first time. The other focus area is on contemporary Argentinian theatre, with Claudio Tolcachir, who broke through at the Festival d'Automne in Paris in 2011 and Daniel Veronese, an big name from the post-dictatorship theatre of Buenos Aires.