The Bibi-Bieber summit is off.
Contrary to yesterday’s reports, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will not be meeting Justin Bieber this week before the pop star’s Tel Aviv debut. The pair were set to have a tête-à-tête today, but the meeting has been called off amidst what’s turning out to be another PR fiasco for Israel.
According to Netanyahu’s office, Bieber had requested a meeting with the Israeli leader this week, as part of the Christian singer’s first trip to Israel. Netanyahu obliged, but then — perhaps to justify meeting with a teen singer — invited children from near Israel’s volatile border with Gaza. The move appears to have displeased the singer, as have overly zealous local paparazzi.
The Bieber has landed.
After months of hysterical anticipation among Israel’s tween girls, the Canadian pop star has arrived in Israel, where he will perform Thursday in Tel Aviv - and, it turns out, meet with Benjamin Netanyahu.
The prime minister’s office, sounding somewhat defensive, has let it be known that the singer and his manager requested the meeting, and not the other way around. Either way, Netanyahu plans to get some political mileage out of the event, inviting children from near the rocket-strewn border with Gaza to attend.
It sounds more like a wish list than something to plan on, but Lady Gaga and some other major stars could be on their way to Israel this summer.
Today’s Yediot Aharonot reports that the “Born This Way” singer is being courted by “operatives in the American and Canadian Jewish communities” about a concert that would take place in one of the country’s biggest venues. The show would be the 24-year-old’s second performance in Israel, following a 2009 music-festival appearance that took place just as she was becoming a global phenomenon. This time, the article says, concert organizers are hoping the singer’s visit could be used to help promote tourism to the country. If Gaga does go, The Shmooze simply suggests that any meat in her outfits be kosher.
Bieber fever has hit Israel.
Tickets to the country’s first-ever Justin Bieber concert went on sale Thursday evening - but remained available for only a few minutes before leaan.co.il, the ticketing website for the Tel Aviv show, crashed due to overwhelming traffic.
Bieber, the Canadian pop singer with a tween fan base more rabid than Old Yeller, announced the concert at the start of December part of his My World Tour.
His wife, the Canadian jazz pianist and singer Diana Krall, is to perform in Ra’anana in August, and the international pro-Israel advocacy group StandWithUs has offered Elvis Costello a “five star VIP tour of Israel” if he accompanies her on the trip.
The Forward recently reported that Costello canceled his June 30 and July 1 performances in Tel Aviv, describing his decision as “a matter of instinct and conscience.” In a statement Costello also blames the decision on “despicable acts of violence perpetrated in the name of liberation.”
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