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Renaissance @ Wahall Amphitheater, Tel Aviv, Israel

in Tuesday, 28 April 2015 at Wahall Amphitheater
by Val Smirnoff

From the early 70's till the year 2015, like a glorious time machine, the band members of RENAISSANCE landed in Israel in 27th of April, to perform at the open air Wahall Amphitheater Tel-Aviv.

It was another master plan by ProgStage Productions, once again the mind behind this venture was here to fulfill many people dreams and also his own. Choosing an amphitheater for this kind of concert was the best decision to deliver the whole experience, in full and with a rich atmosphere.

For those who don't know who RENAISSANCE, it has to be a big blind spot in their musical experience, although I consider myself as a person who can't seem to sympathize with Progressive music, in any form. For me it's just complicated and too messy, therefore my appearance in this event felt weird and unnecessary, only at first.

I was surprised and amazed by this group and by their Israeli fans, considering the fact that it was my first time to listen and see the band live. As far as I know, Israeli basic musical culture starts and ends with local trashy Middle Eastern Pop. To see a full amphitheater with standard middle age people, between ages of 40-50, bringing their families and children, just to listen and enjoy high quality music, it was a sight of hope for me.

First of all, RENAISSANCE didn't display their music as too complicated as I was expecting, it's simply beautiful and affluent, and it's so easy to just close your eyes and to be lost in Annie Haslam's voice. The songs had some very strong Progressive Rock elements, but their gathering was to get the listener to the mood of mystery and calm, as the melody moves on and progresses to a trance like atmosphere. Some people couldn't resist themselves from dancing to this hypnotizing music.

The crystal clear voice performed by Annie Haslam followed gently by Rave Tesar on keyboards, caught my breath and had my full attention. The pastoral nature of RENAISSANCE is something that you cannot explain simply by words, it's something you have to carefully listen and experience by yourself.

Since the 70's, RENAISSANCE still hold their own distinctive style. Some things, just as classical music, have to remain with us no matter the fashion. You would be surprised to find out that they're not only performing music from their hey days, in fact they had a recent album in 2013, "Grandine Il Vento". This fact filled my heart with hope that we're still having a fine line of music to pass to the next generation.

Thank you ProgStage Productions for bringing the nostalgia to life and providing a mind opening experience for the young and new audience.

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Edited 30 January 2023

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