The poem, “במזרח לבי” – “My Heart is in the East”, was written by Yehuda Halevi during the Golden Age of Spain. In the poem, Halevi expresses that although life in Spain was comfortable, he could not appreciate the joys of his present moment because he yearned so deeply to be in Israel – the place where his heart resided. The poem raises many questions about the concept of being present. What does it mean to be present, both in historical Jewish contexts and in our lives today?

The emotions evoked by the rest of the poem – sadness, frustration, distraction, longing – were the initial focus for the Grade 8 students as they journeyed through the creative process in music and dance. Our Grade 8 Students learned to interpret לבי במזרח through dance, choreography and song writing, using movement and music to convey emotion. We hope you will enjoy this performance by our Grade 8 students at the 2018-19 Chanukah Concert!