A “life achievement” prize that was to be presented to singer Ariel Zilber by ACUM, the Israeli music copyright association, has been “demoted” to just a prize – and MK Nissan Slomiansky (Jewish Home) said that he would “remember to pay them back at the appropriate time” for the insult.
In an upcoming event, Zilber was to be awarded the prize recognizing his vast contribution to Israeli pop music. But according to Yediot Achronot, the prize was quashed by Dalia Rabin, daughter of murdered Prime Minister Rabin, who is a member of Acum's Board of Directors and is opposed to Zilber because of his rightwing political stance.
In addition, Israeli singer Achinoam Nini announced that she would not attend the event if Zilber was awarded the prize.
As a compromise, ACUM decided to present Zilber with a prize, but not a “life achievement” prize. According to the Yediot report, Zilber intends to accept the prize and speak at the event.
Slomiansky said that he was “sad to hear that Acum had declared itself to be a politically-oriented body, going beyond its purview as a musical organization. In the future, when Acum asks for economic support from the government with the argument that it supports Israeli culture – of which Ariel Zilber is a very important part – we will keep their stance in mind.”
Earlier, Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman slammed the group, saying that "the capitulation of ACUM and the decision to give Ariel Zilber a prize only on his contribution to Israeli music instead of a lifetime achievement award is a dangerous submission and flattery of the Bolshevism of radical leftists."