At the beginning of my journey as a dancer in the late 1960s, all the dancers and creators of Israeli dance were in awe of the name, Karmon.
In my encounters with him, I came to know a person who has Israeli dance in every part of his body. I had the pleasure of hearing about his worldview of dance, which was also ingrained in me.
Later on we met again, in preparation for the Karmiel Festival. During auditions for the first festival he asked me about the “Rakafot Tivon” troupe: “How did you manage to form a performing dance group that would be so Israeli – both the dances and the dancers?”
His perception and understanding of international and Israeli dance were reflected in the preparations for the festival in 1996, when the annual theme was “Industry – Manufacture and Export”. The idea astonished the choreographers – creating dances for the industry? I invited him to see the dance I created for the textile industry – “The Cotton Dance”. He saw it and said: “We’ll talk tomorrow”.
The next day, he called and asked me to change two things in the dance. One requirement was that I change music – instead of the song “HaPilpel – The Hot Pepper”, which is a melody that was adapted [from a Mexican folk tune] by Israelis, we will use an Israeli song, “Tilbeshi Lavan – Wear White”. The second requirement was to change the beginning of the dance and add an American motif.
It was done. To my delight, the dance remains in our repertoire to this day, as do most of the dances that Yonatan had set as themes for the festival performances.