August 24, 2011, Updated September 14, 2012

Forget American Idol, a new song contest star will be crowned tomorrow in Ramat Hasharon – and people from around the world will be watching.

It’s the Hallelujah global song contest for Jews and the grand finale is near.

The contest was the brainchild of Israeli music producer Eitan Gafni, and was based on a nearly 20-year-old Hebrew song contest for young Jews from Diaspora communities.

Nearly all of the contestants, ages 16 to 26, came with a music background and had performed before audiences.

The 30 semi-finalists, who are now in Israel, were brought here to continue competing while also learning about the country.


The contest’s slogan is “Who’s going to be the next Jewish star?” And event organizers say they hope the contest will create a new musical tradition for World Jewry that will strengthen the connection with the Diaspora.

The finalists will perform popular Hebrew songs.

The winner of tomorrow’s finale will receive an $8,000 cash prize and the opportunity to record a duet with an Israeli artist. The winner will also be sent on a concert tour in Jewish communities around the world.

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