Mira Awad - Full Biography
Full name: Mira Anwar Awad
Date of birth 11.6.1975
Languages: Arabic, Hebrew, English, Bulgarian.
Style: World Music.
Currently living in Tel-Aviv, Israel.
Mira Awad gives Workshops and Lessons.
Actress, singer and songwriter. Born in Rameh village in the Gallillee, 1975, to Palestinian father-Anwar, and Bulgarian mother-Snejanka, between two brothers-Alan and Sinan. She grew up in a politically involved family with high humanitarian values, from an early age she spoke out for women's rights, for equal citizenship for Palestinians living in Israel and for Environmental awareness. And she continues to be an activist for these causes, and a big believer in dialogue and human solidarity throughout the world.
She started singing from an early age, and performing from the age of 9.
Her musical influences include Arabic music, World Music, Bulgarian traditional music, Pink Floyd, Joni Mitchell, Sting, Peter Gabriel, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Zyad Rahbani, Fairuz, music from all Mediterranean cultures: Greek, Spanish, Turkish, Lebanese and so on. At the age of 15 she started writing her own songs which are a fusion of all the different influences.
She finished high-school in Rameh village in 1994, and moved to Haifa and studied Fine Arts and English Literature in the Haifa University for two years, while performing with her Rock band Samana (our sky) which she wrote the music for. in 1996 she moved to Tel-Aviv and studied music at Rimon School for Jazz and contemporary music, 1996-2000. Later she also studied in the Body Theatre School (Inspired and connected to the Jaques Lecoq school of theatre), also participated in theatre improvisational workshops in Israel and the UK.
Mira started a career in acting in 1999 when she performed in the Arabic speaking musical called Ad'kor (I remember), telling the story of the Galilee occupation in 1948, written by the Galilee originated poet Shakib Jahshan, composed and directed by Nabil Azar. From there she continued into a successful theatrical career on Israeli stages, working in both languages: Arabic and Hebrew, and the occasional English and even Italian speaking production.
She currently works with the Arabic-Hebrew theatre in Jaffa, a theatre that is established on the principal of co-existence between the two cultures, in the productions: Dual Solitude, a collage of Jewish and Palestinian poems (also performed in Lamama theatre in New-York), The committee for truth and reconciliation (a concept taken from a production made in South Africa for reconciliation following the Apartheid). The queen and the soldier (a play based on the Suzan Vega song telling the story of a soldier coming from the battle field to the Queen's castle to ask why there is war), Creation (prize winner in Acco theatre festival ,also performed in Lamama theatre, NY), she currently appears in Eyes, a play based on texts by the late Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, which she also wrote the music for.
Mira also participated in an Italian speaking production based on Isabel Allende's book The House of Spirits, in Dell'orologio theatre, Rome, Italy. And ventured into the modern dance with the production Hold the light for me, a dance piece by Mimi Wisenberg with live music composed by Menahem Wisenberg, performed by dancing singers and a contrabass.
Mira played the part of Eliza Doolittle in the acclaimed musical My Fair Lady which was produced by the Israeli Opera house, a role that brought her to the Israeli nation-wide awareness.
• From the reviews about My Fair Lady:
“Mira Awad was blessed with a fascinating voice and so was ensured of a successful performance as Eliza Doolittle. But the perhaps even more important revelation is her ability to shape Eliza from the inside. She was stormy, rude, crude, and sometimes even repulsive in her first scenes. Yet at the same time, her awakening curiosity was quite obvious – the sense that something else that takes even her by surprise, is taking place within her. So when she comes to ask Higgins to teach her to speak properly, Awad’s Eliza has already signaled to us that her personality is what is seeking to burst out of its cocoon, long before Higgins or Pickering pick up on it.” By theatre critic Tzvi Goren.
Mira worked as an actress in the Cameri theatre of Tel-Aviv for 6 years, in the productions: Plonter, Shirat Hakameri (musical), Makom Aher Ve Ir Zara (musical), Ze Hayam Hagadol, and The return to Haifa, based on a story by Palestinian author Ghassan Kanafani.
For her work in the Cameri theatre she won the Edna Flidel scholarship for young actors.
• From the reviews about The Return to Haifa:
“Mira Awad is all of human pain. She makes the air around her quiver from so much pain. She is ready for the moments of accepting judgment. She wants her son but is almost willing to escape. Awad plays the part so movingly that it is hard to describe.” By Dan Lachman.
In music Mira Awad collaborated with many international artists.
With Israeli world music artist Idan Reichel in two of his albums, she wrote the lyrics and sang the song "Azini" in his album "Mema'amakim", and the song "Ana Ana" in his album "Quarter to six".
Mira performed with Greek star George Dalaras in Athens and appears on the CD and DVD of the live show.
She released a duet called "You and I" with Israeli Hip Hop singer Guy Mar.
She recorded with the Spanish rock band La Oreja de Van Gogh a new version for their song "Jueves".
She performed with international Opera star Andrea Bocelli in his concert in Messada, and with the legendary king of improvisation Bobby Mc'Ferrin in Tel-Aviv.
She recorded two songs for the upcoming David Broza album ("Ramallah Tel-Aviv" and "The key to your memory"), she appears in Joca Perpignan's album Manso Balanco ("Voz de algodao") and recorded two songs with the metal band Orphaned Land for their latest album All is one ("Children-Arabic version" and "Through fire and water").
Mira recorded the theme songs for movies:
Forgiveness by director Udi Aloni, and Lemon Tree by director Eran Riklis.
She has also been working with Israeli international star Noa (Achinoam Nini) since 2000, the collaboration started from the Beatles song We can work it out that appeared in Noa's album Now, then continued into the duet A word which appears on Mira's world music album Bahlawan-Acrobat, musically produced by Amos Ever-Hadani. Later on, the two singers represented Israel in the Eurovision song contest 2009 with the duet There must be another way. The duet was written by Mira, Noa and musical producer Gil Dor, in three languages: Hebrew, Arabic and English and it appears on their duet album carrying the same name (released by Universal music), and in consistent alignment with all their collaborations it describes the urgent need to find a way for communication and resolution between the Israeli and the Palestinian people.
The duo won the NIF Human Rights for Arts and Culture award 2010.
Mira performed in The Liberty Medal Ceremony in Philadelphia, where Bill Clinton handed the 2010 liberty medal to Tony Blair.
Mira won Best Music Award in the Masrahid monodrama contest 2010, for music she composed for the monodrama theatre play Not Noah's Ark.
She also composed the music and performs live in the theatre piece Eyes based on texts by the late Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish (Also performed in “Between the seas festival”. New-York, July 2013), and won Best Music Award for it in the 2013 Golden Porcupine Fringe theatre awards.
Mira Awad is first prize winner of ISC (International Songwriting Competition) for World Music category 2012. Judges include: Tom Waits, Garbage, Jon Secada, Dido, Anoushka Shankar, and many more.
In 2011 Mira was signed to Sony Music-Spain, and released her second album All my faces. The album was produced by Spanish producer Carlos Jean and is a fusion between Jean's electronic sound, and Awad's world music.
In the end of 2012 she left Sony and established LabelFree, an indie world music label.
Nowadays Mira also performs with Transit Trio, which is a World Music collaboration of three artists: Joca Perpignan-Brazilian percussionist and singer songwriter, Marc Kakon-Moroccan guitarist and composer, and Mira Awad. The Trio aims to create music with no borders, A true a musical bridge between South America , North Africa and the Middle East.. Learn More
Mira appears on the successful TV series Arab Labor, a satire portraying the reality of Palestinians living in Israel.
Noah's Ark, a quality drama series by director Rany Bleier. Guest appearances on the comedy Life is not everything, and on the Israeli soap opera Hasufim (exposed) as herself.
Mira also hosted TV programs and game-shows for youth on channel 1 and on the Israeli Educational TV, on programs: Sahtein, Yots'im mehakelim, Sabres, The trail of tales.
She created and co-hosted a bilingual lifestyle TV show called Ahla Yom (fine day) together with fashion designer Yuval Caspin.
She also created and hosted Mira.net, a talk show in Arabic for channel 33.
Mira participated in the high rating Israeli version of Dancing with the stars 2010.
The Bubble by Israeli director Eytan Fox.
Al'zendiq by Palestinian director Michel Khleifi.
Zaytun by director Eran Riklis.
Farewell Baghdad by director Nissim Dayan.
She edited and presented the radio program Terminal on Al'Shams radio (the sun radio). And co-hosted the program Friday at 9 with Emanuel Rozen on Radio 99. Edited and presented a world music radio show on radio 88 called Online.
Alongside her rich career, she is also an amteur photographer and had photo exhibitions of some of her work called We didn’t have a sea there and On my way to school.
Mira won a prize for Costume Design she did for a children's play called The summer vacation. She also did wardrobe design in the movie Chronicle of a disappearance by director Elia Suliman.
And she was Chosen Artist for Israel Cultural Excellence Foundation (IcExcellence) 2008.
On my way to school-Photos by Mira Awad
Bahlawan (acrobat), 2009 produced by Amos Ever-Hadani. Label: Helicon.
There must be another way- Noa and Mira Awad 2009, duet album. Label: Universal records.
All my faces 2011, produced by Spanish musical producer Carlos Jean. Label: Sony Spain.
My favourite quote:
"Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional"
I like cats, foot massages and sushi.
I dislike cockroaches and lies! brrrrr:-P
A Mira Awad concert can be combined with a talk with the audience, thus creating a fuller experience of her musical and personal journey.
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