The Shalva Band is comprised of eight talented musicians with disabilities and performs to the highest musical standards by invitation at cultural venues and dignitary events throughout the year. Inspiring crowds with its musical repertoire and charm, the band is one of Shalva’s most celebrated inclusion programs.
The band members are employed by Shalva as musicians and they also study, work, and volunteer in the broader community. Some of them are graduates of Shalva’s rehabilitative programs and their musical talents were discovered and developed through Shalva’s music therapy program.
What began as a unique outlet for talented Shalva program participants in 2005, has developed into a model for cultural inclusion and continues to impact audiences and musicians throughout Israel and beyond. With the band’s growing popularity in Israel and the world, The Shalva Band regularly performs with well-known artists and at the fore of popular music forums. In addition to being a delightful and inspiring musical experience, the band’s performances shatter attitudinal barriers, causing mesmerizing audiences to believe in human potential and dignity.
In 2019, The Shalva Band performed its rendition of “A Million Dreams” (OST The Greatest Showman) at the Eurovision. Broadcast live, the performance was seen by hundreds of millions of people around the world. On the largest stage in the world, surrounded by the greatest love of all, the band gave its heart and soul. It continues, and will never stop dreaming – along with people around the world – a million dreams.
Anael Khalifa who began singing at age five: “Music is everything. It’s my home. It’s a hug. I connect to myself and to others through music. It’s me!” Originally from France, the family came to Israel when she was 8. Singing was the tool Anael used to adjust to her new school, it allowed her to stand out even though she didn’t yet speak the language.
Dina Samteh was born in Manipur, India, came to Israel at age 10 and learned Hebrew through singing. Even in her blindness, Dina says she feels the light and happiness that the audiences she performs for radiate, which makes her feel equal to them.