Last weekend, the German community of Karlsruhe hosted the largest music contest in Europe for teens. Since the annual Jewrovision was first celebrated in Germany in 2002, drawing just 120 participants, the competition has grown to more than 1,200 of the most talented young representatives of German Jewish communities, plus an army of their fans, filling to full capacity the largest concert hall in town.
A deserving winner was named and celebrated at 1:30 a.m. – Chasak, the teenage club from Hamburg, who came out victorious for the first time in Jewrovision’s history.
Today, Jewrovision is much more than just a performing arts competition. The gathering presents an opportunity for German-Jewish youth to be a part of the community, come together with like-minded peers, make new friends and become more involved in Jewish culture. During Jewrovision, participants have the chance to educate themselves Jewishly though a series of seminars and workshops jointly supported by the Central Council of Jews in Germany and Genesis Philanthropy Group, a foundation which develops and enhances Jewish identity among Russian-speaking Jews worldwide.
“We have seen amazing performances at this year’s Jewrovision. The teenagers put the strong cohesion and the cultural differences within the Jewish community at the heart of their performances. Cultural diversity as an asset – that is the message of the Jewrovision,” explains Dr. Josef Schuster, President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, which has been supporting the competition since 2013.
Added Ilia Salita, President and CEO of Genesis Philanthropy Group, “It is an honor for us to once again support such a meaningful program as Jewrovision – perhaps the most significant event for Jewish youth in Germany today. We were deeply impressed by the performers’ expression of love for their Jewish heritage, enthusiasm for the Jewish community, and appreciation for the State of Israel. Given that nearly 90 percent of Jews in Germany today have a Russian-Jewish background, Genesis Philanthropy Group is thrilled to continuously expand its work in Germany in support of deepening and strengthening the ties of young Jewish Germans to their heritage.”