Where did you grow up and what is your family background?
I grew up in Samarkand/ Dushanbe in Tajikistan and emigrated to Israel in 1990. I come from a Jewish Bukharian family.
What is the overall objective of the group and where did your inspiration come from?
My dream was to gather my own family to perform around the world. That dream is at present coming through.
The inspiration came from the children themselves who are all very musical talents.
They have known nothing but becoming musicians growing up.
What's your favourite thing to do in your spare time?
I love watching tennis games, especially female matches.
Name three people you'd invite to a dinner party and why?
Nona Yagonavova, a good friend and a soprano singer who passed away.
Shimon Parnass, an Israeli radio journalist, and Yvonne Kahan, our manager.
These are people who enjoy good music, good drinks and food.
What excites you about coming to New Zealand?
We look forward to meeting the people and to see their reaction of our music. To see the beautiful countryside.
We don't have much nature in Israel except from the desert and the sea. I believe your nature is astonishing, so we have heard.
What is currently playing on your iPod?
I have no iPod.
What do you hope audiences will take away from your Womad performance?
Traditions kept in family is not something usual these days, but it has been for hundreds of years.
It is a beautiful way to keep the tradition and at the same time develop and change.
We do both.
We keep tradition, but we are developing the music within the modern times.
Are there any other projects you're working on besides preparing for Womad NZ?
We are currently working on our youngest members Amanda, 8, and Abraham, 2, to be prepared to perform. Amanda already performs.
Also we are doing a huge tribute concert to myself in May for my 80th birthday.
- © Fairfax NZ News
Do you think state schools should conduct religious instruction for primary-aged children?