Ten years ago, a Hanukkah miracle took place. I would’ve gone my whole life without knowing about it, but then I put “Hanukkah” and “Gal Gadot” into Google (don’t ask), and my life changed forever, through one glorious music video of…
Gal Gadot as A SINGING MERMAID!
As you know, we at Alma are on the Jewish singing mermaid beat, so we had to cover this.
Now, I’m not the first one to unearth this video, but there seems to be a lot of misinformation about this song. So let me clear things up:
This song is from the Festigal, Israel’s most theatrical event for kids: Parents pay the big bucks for their kids to attend this musical theatrical event, which takes place once a year, always during Hanukkah. It features a bunch of Israeli celebs (not all professional singers) all singing songs on one theme, which is how I discovered that…
This song is from 2008: Looking back at the themes of Festigals through the years, the 2008 one had a nautical theme. It was titled “Tfos Ta’Festigal” which is a play on words on the Hebrew saying “tfos ta’gal” which means to catch a wave. Or catch a Gal — a Gal Gadot! (That’s right, Gal Gadot’s first name literally means wave, and Gadot is riverbanks, so she was obviously born for this!!!)
Coincidentally, I also discovered the theme video for that year’s Festigal, which features the entire cast of the show and is a parody of the great Jackson 5 song “Can You Feel It” AND GAL GADOT IS ALSO IN IT. Seriously, this entire day has been the best early Hanukkah present ever.
The name of this song is מאוהבת״” (Me’ohevet) which means “In Love”: It’s not beloved (coughBuzzfeedcough), it’s in love, in the present tense and the singular female form.
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s delve into this wonderful wonderful video.
As we’ve established, it’s from 2008, many years before Wonder Woman. Gadot was in her early 20s, having just won Miss Israel competition three years prior. She’s working as a model and has just started an acting career in an Israeli telenovela called Bubot (Dolls). The next logical role is (DUH!) that of a mermaid in love in a children’s musical. And so, she takes it! Her character is Gal, the big mermaid. No, literally, that’s what she says in the show.
Her musical number starts in darkness, then a screen goes up.
You see Gadot in a seashell bra (duh!) and a mermaid’s tail that is attached to her hand (the better to dance with, my friends).
She’s surrounded by a bunch of… dancing shells? They all have pearls on their heads.
We pan out and then we see a bunch of dancing… sea creatures? Spinning plates?
And just when we thought it could not get more extra, there are levitating dancing mermaids, because of course.
It all culminates with a dramatic moment in which the mermaid sings to her beloved, an oceanography professor (um, yes, I know it looks like he’s dressed like a pirate, but he’s just a hipster academic type. Sorry). He is played by handsome Israeli actor Guy Zu-Aretz (who coincidentally, went on to star in Steven Spielberg’s Munich).
The dramatic lyrics to the chorus of the song roughly translate to:
“I am in love/With your heart
Don’t stop/ The melody
We are two/ Against the world
Without fear/ Without Sadness
It’s a lot.
The song has a weirdly dramatic spoken word part which roughly translates to “unstoppable love” and as those words play one last time, Gal Gadot raises her fist in the air and freezes. The song ends.
Which I take as a cue to listen to it again! It’s the gift that keeps on giving. Like the miracle of the oil, the joy from this song is going to last for at least eight nights, if not more.
If you feel especially brave, you can watch almost the entire nautical show, right here: