Hava Nagila

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - View original article

Jump to: navigation, search
Sorry, your browser either has JavaScript disabled or does not have any supported player.
You can download the clip or download a player to play the clip in your browser.
Instrumental performance of Hava Nagila

Problems playing this file? See media help.

Hava Nagila” (הבה נגילה Havah Nagilah, "Let us rejoice") is a Jewish traditional folk song in Hebrew, that has become a staple of band performers at Jewish weddings and Bar/Bat Mitzvahs.


The melody was taken from a folk dance-song from Bucovina, in the north of Romania (a variant of Hora).[1] It uses the Phrygian dominant scale common in music of Romania. The melody of the anthem of Israel was also taken from a Romanian folk song. The commonly used text was probably composed by Abraham Zevi (Zvi) Idelsohn[2][3] in 1918 to celebrate the British victory in Palestine during World War I as well as the Balfour Declaration. Psalm 118 (verse 24) of the Hebrew Bible was the source of Hava Nagila.[citation needed]


TransliterationHebrew textEnglish translation
Hava nagilaהבה נגילהLet's rejoice
Hava nagilaהבה נגילהLet's rejoice
Hava nagila ve-nismekhaהבה נגילה ונשמחהLet's rejoice and be happy
Hava neranenahהבה נרננהLet's sing
Hava neranenahהבה נרננהLet's sing
Hava neranenah ve-nismekhaהבה נרננה ונשמLet's sing and be happy
Uru, uru akhim!!עורו, עורו אחיםAwake, awake, brothers
Uru akhim be-lev sameakhḥעורו אחים בלב שמחAwake brothers with a happy heart
 (repeat line four times) 
Uru akhim, uru akhim!!עורו אחים, עורו אחיםAwake, brothers, awake, brothers!
Be-lev sameakhḥבלב שמחWith a happy heart

Note: The “” can be pronounced as a voiceless pharyngeal fricative [ħ] (as in Classical Hebrew) or a voiceless uvular fricative [χ], as “ch” as in Bach (Modern Hebrew pronunciation).

Notable performers[edit]

Usage in sports[edit]

1994Ukraine Lilia Podkopayeva Gymnastics1994 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships
1995-1997Ghana Tony YeboahFootballall season long
1998-1999Russia Evgeni Plushenko Figure skatingall season long
1999-2000Italy Maurizio Margaglio Figure skatingall season long
1999-2000Italy Barbara Fusar-Poli Figure skatingall season long
2000Russia Yekaterina Lobaznyuk Gymnastics2000 Sydney Olympics
2000-2001Russia Irina Lobacheva Figure skatingall season long
2000-2001Russia Ilia Averbukh Figure skatingall season long
2002-2003Russia Alina KabaevaRhythmic Gymnasticsall season long
2004-2005Japan Daisuke Murakami Figure skatingall season long
2007-2008China Wang Chen Figure skatingall season long
2007-2008China Yu Xiaoyang Figure skatingall season long
2009-2010Israel Roman Zaretsky Figure skatingall season long
2009-2010Israel Alexandra Zaretsky Figure skatingall season long
2010Romania Sandra Izbasa Gymnasticsall season long
2011-2012United States Aly Raisman Gymnastics2011 CoverGirl Classic through Floor gold medal performance at 2012 London Olympics[15]
2011-2012Israel Israeli TeamRhythmic Gymnasticsall season long
2012Israel Neta RivkinRhythmic Gymnasticsall season long

See also[edit]


  1. ^ A. Idelsohn "Jewish Music: its historical development", p.12
  2. ^ Yudelson, Larry. "Who wrote Havah Nagilah?". RadioHazak. Larry Yudelson. Archived from the original on 2008-07-29. Retrieved 2007-11-08. 
  3. ^ In an appearance on BBC Radio 4 Desert Island Discs on 28 October 2007, Joel Joffe referred to his grandfather Abraham Zevi Idelsohn as the author of "Hava Nagila", but in the programme notes it says "Composer: Bashir Am Israelim", meaning that either this is an alias for Abraham Zevi Idelsohn, to whom Joffe was clearly referring in the programme, or (more plausibly) the programme notes contain a mis-transcription of "Shir Am Yisraeli", meaning "Israeli folksong".
  4. ^ http://www.seligman.org.il/joffe_AZIdelsohn.html
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Hava Nagila, What Is It? (Part I)" at YouTube[unreliable source?]
  6. ^ Leland, John. Hip: The History, HarperCollins, 2004, p. 206.
  7. ^ "Set Lists 1968 to 1976". The Highway Star. Retrieved 2012-06-18. 
  8. ^ [1] Raphael sings "Hava Nagila" at Youtube
  9. ^ [2] Neo Cheezy (2007)
  10. ^ DALIDA Hava nagila 2, at Youtube
  11. ^ Neil Diamond Live In America 1994, at Youtube
  12. ^ "Hava Nagila Twist", on The Hokey Pokey:Organized Dancing (1991)
  13. ^ "Hava Nagila" by Sonata Arctica in a Tokyo concert, at Youtube
  14. ^ Dream Theater: vídeo de música judaica no show em Israel, luew, 19/06/09
  15. ^ Kvelling for Aly Raisman on Salon. Retrieved 8 August 20112

External links[edit]