The Abu-Gosh Festival is the leading and most important festival in the Israeli vocal music scene. The Festival has existed in its present layout since 1992, and it takes place twice a year – on Sukot and Shvuot – lasting between three to five days each time.
The Festival's concerts are performed in two churches: the Crusader-Benedictine Church, built in the 12th century, situated in the heart of the village; and the Kiryat Ye'arim Church, situated at the top of the hill, overlooking Abu-Gosh.
Twice a year, the village of Abu Gosh becomes a paradise for vocal music lovers, who come in their thousands from all over the country and turn Abu Gosh and its churches into a colorful vocal locale of festivities.
Hanna Tzur is the Music Director of the Abu Gosh Festival since 1995, and has served as conductor and musical director of the Ramat-Gan Chamber Choir for 19 years.
A contralto, Ms. Tzur has appeared as soloist with the major orchestras and conductors in Israel. She is a graduate of the School for Music Teachers and the Musicology Department of the University of Tel-Aviv. She spent 10 years as Assistant Conductor to Ziggy Shtederman of Abu Gosh Festival, and since 1995, has served as the Festival's Music Director.
Ms. Tzur has conducted major works such as Bach's Mass in B Minor and Johannes Passion, Handel's Messiah and Dixit Dominus, Requiems by Mozart, Brahms, Fauré and Bruckner; masses by Rossini, Puccini and Mozart, Mendelssohn's Midsummer Night's Dream and Gloria, Dvorak's Stabat Mater and works by Israeli composers, including Eyal Batt and Ella Sheriff/Nava Semel. These works were performed with the leading orchestras and musicians in Israel, including the Kibbutz-Netanya Chamber Orchestra, the Israel Chamber Orchestra, and musicians from the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. In 2011 Ms. Tzur conducted a concert featuring Danil Triponov, winner of the Rubinstein International Piano Competition, in Johannes Brahms' "Love Song Waltzes".