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Yaffa Yarkoni

(1905 - 2012)

Yaffa Yarkoni was born in Eretz Yisrael and began her life as a singer in a coffee house in Givatayim owned by her mother. She served in the Givati Brigade in the War of Independence and appeared in the army choral troupe. She later traveled and performed extensively in the United States, and she has recorded many songs in foreign languages, as well as in Hebrew. Among her most famous recordings is her rendition of ".äàîéðé éåí éáåà"

The decision to award Yarkoni the Israel Prize in 1998 for her contribution to Israeli music was met with much approval. Dubbed "the singer of the wars," Yarkoni appeared to many to have accompanied the country through its often turbulent history; the jubilee year's prize thus culminates simultaneously a chapter of Israel's history and of Yarkoni's career. Yarkoni herself, who in previous years had voiced bitterness at not having been chosen for the prize, noted the significance of receiving the award at Israel's fiftieth anniversary of independence.

On January 1, 2012, Yarkoni died at Reut Medical Center in Tel Aviv.

Sources: The Pedagogic Center, The Department for Jewish Zionist Education, The Jewish Agency for Israel, (c) 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, Director: Dr. Motti Friedman, Webmaster: Esther Carciente; Wikipedia