Israeli-Indian Singer, Set to Perform National Anthem for PM Modi, Gave Up Blossoming Bollywood Career to Return to Jewish State
The Indian-Israeli singer expected to sing the countries’ national anthems when Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits the Jewish state this week reportedly gave up a blossoming Bollywood career in order to be in Israel.
Liora Itzhak, who was born to Indian immigrant parents from Mumbai, told the Press Trust of India (PTI) that she gave up her music career in India because of homesickness. She had traveled to India at the age of 15 to study music and soon after saw a breakthrough when she was asked to sing in an Indian movie, and later alongside well-known Indian singers. But after eight years living apart from her parents, Itzhak felt compelled to return to her family in Israel. She declined other music industry offers and instead returned home to the Jewish state.
“I was 23 and terribly homesick having spent eight years away in difficult conditions from my parents and siblings. I love India but I just could not bear this separation anymore,” Itzhak — who has previously collaborated with Israeli singer Idan Raichel — told PTI.
Itzhak will sing at a dinner hosted by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on July 4 in honor of Modi, who will be the first ever Indian prime minister to visit Israel. The musician previously sang at a banquet hosted by Israeli President Rivlin in 2015 in honor of Indian President Pranab Mukherjee during his visit to Israel, according to PTI.