Dudu Barak- a songwriter, a poet, a radio man.
Born in Jerusalem in 1948, together with the State of Israel, he is the son of Lea and Yehoshua Wild, a father of three and a grandfather of five. Dudu Barak studied at Arlozerov primary school in Jerusalem. When he was 11 years old, his parents moved to the city of Holon, where at the age of 18 he graduated from Kugel high school. The arts and radio were always his main interests, and during his childhood he sang at “Pinat Hayeled” choir, the first radio show for children on Israeli radio, and learned to play the recorder under Zvi Kaplan. At adolescence he studied classical ballet under Mia Arbatova in Tel Aviv, folk dancing under Yoav Ashriel in Holon, and drawing & graphics in Tel Aviv.
Following his high school graduation, he started his military service in the IDF armored corps, only to move to the military radio station (Galei Tzahal) to serve as a narrator and a music program editor, a position he was the first person to ever hold in the station. It was then that he started writing his first songs and poems. Upon his discharge, he flew to study in New York and graduated from the RCA institute in the fields of Television, Directing, Producing and Narration. By then his first songs were already known and sang in Israel.
He went back to Jerusalem, and joined the Israeli Broadcast Authority (IBA) and its radio stations, as a music program editor and a narrator. In the following years he studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and graduated in the fields of Hebrew Literature, Arts, Jewish Folklore and Education.
He will work at the IBA for 35 years until his retirement. He still lives in his beloved Jerusalem.
Throughout the years he wrote over 400 songs, alongside past composers such as Moshe Wilensky, Sasha Argov, Nachum Heiman, Yair Rosenblum, Yaacov Hollander and Dafna Eilat and works with present ones such as Nurit Hirsh, Arye Levanon, Efi Netzer, Shaike Paikov, Yair Klinger, Moni Amarilio and Yoni Roeh.
Israel’s finest past and present singers sing Dudu Barak’s songs. Among them are Shoshana Damari, Yafa Yarkoni, Hana Aharoni, Yehoram Gaon, Rika Zarai, Aliza Kashi, Aliza Azikri, Ilanit, Yardena Arazi, Rita, Avi Toledano, Boaz Sharabi, Miri Aloni, Dorit Reuveni, Yigal Bashan, Edna Goren, Edna Lev, Shula Chen, Hedva Amrani, Aviva Avidan, Zehava Ben, Korin Allal, The Gevatron and Shiri Maimon.
His songs won awards in music festivals both in Israel and around the world:
- His song “Veshuv It’chem (“With you Again”) won the bronze medal at the1971 International Songs Olympiads in Athens, Greece.
- His song “Shiru Shir Lashemesh” (“Sing a Song to the Sun”) won the silver medal at the1974 Yamaha World Popular Song Festival in Tokyo, Japan.
- His song “Lama Kacha” won the Israeli Children‘s Songs Festival in 1970.
- His song “Chayecha ve’chayai” won the 2nd place at the Israeli Songs Festival in 1972.
- His song “Chag Yovel” won the 3rd place at the Israeli Children‘s Songs Festival in 1972.
- His song “Chagigat Aviv” won the 3rd place at the Israeli Children‘s Songs Festival in 1973.
His songs were published in 11 different records, cassettes and CD’s: “Israel – The Almond Country”, “Land of the Seven Species”, “The Eastern Wall”, “Songs of the Land”, “East Winds”, “Seventh Heaven”, “Or Shiv’at Hayamim”, “Lach od Ashir Alpayim”, “Flowers in a Riffle Barrel – Songs of Dudu Barak”, “My Jerusalem – Poems by Dudu Barak”, “And Thou Shalt Rejoice in Thy Feast”.
Dudu Barak published nine poetry books:
- Ish Habasar Ish Hachalav (“Man of Meat Man of Milk”), Hakibbutz Hameuchad Publishing House, 1977.
- Shloshim Onot Shel Geshem (“Thirty Seasons of Rain”), Sifriat Poalim Publishing House, 1979.
- Reihaim (“Millstones”), Proza Publishing House, 1981.
- Shirim Lememshelet Ha’or (“Songs to the Government of Light”), Hakibbutz Hameuchad Publishing House, 1982.
- Eimat Harik (“The awe of Void”), Alef Publishing House, 1984.
- From Medici To Ruchely, Sifiriat Poalim Publishing House, 1985.
- Poland Between Glory and Ashes, Sifiriat Poalim Publishing House, 1986.
- Ahava, Mehila, Pius (“Love, Forgiveness, Reconciliation”), Eked Publishing House, 1989.
- Jerusalem, Sifiriat Poalim Publishing House, 1989.
His songs were published in four song books including lyrics and music notes:
- The Almond Country Road, Hakibbutz Hameuchad Publishing House, 1986.
- Today Today – The Songbook of Dudu Barak, Printiv Press, 2008.
- Forgotten Gleaning – Ungathered songs by Dudu Barak, Naim Zmirot Publishing House, 2012.
- Shir Kor’e Le’lachan, Steimatzky Publishing, 2017.
He also wrote three children’s books:
- Shir Shai Le’Ophir UleYannai (“A Gift Song to Ophir and Yannai”), Hakibbutz Hameuchad Publishing House, 1982.
- Once in Jerusalem, Sifiriat Poalim Publishing House, 1984.
- Einaim Bechol Hatsva’im (“Eyes in Every C olor”), Reshafim Publishing House, 1986.
And he also edited and produced books, records and CD’s, such as:
- At Telchi Basade – Lea Goldberg’s songbook, Sifirat Hapoalim.
- Chayalim Yats’u Laderech – Israeli Army bands songbook, The MoD Publishing House.
- Shoshana Damari Greatest Songs – Three CD’s and a book, Hed Arzi.
- Shirim Ad Kan – a vinyl record following a five hours’ radio show in the topic of composed poems from the Haskala until today, CBS.
Dudu Barak wrote a cantata inspired by the holocaust – “Between Warsaw and Jerusalem”, based on his poetry book “Poland Between Glory and Ashes”; sang by the soprano singer Sigal Vardi and The Ra’ananim Ensemble, accompanied by the pianist Gilad Shapira . Music was written, produced and conducted by the composer Yair Klinger.
Dudu Barak dedicates much of his time to performances with various vocal and instrumental groups. For over 30 years he performs in IDF bases in front of soldiers and officers, in front of school and kindergarten children, at retirement homes, hospitals and prisons throughout Israel. Many of the songs were adapted into folk dances in Israel and worldwide.
In 1990 he performed with Polish singer Sława Przybylska and late author Miriam Akavia in a series of shows in Warsaw Kraków, Wrocław and Kłodzko following the publishing of his book “Poland Between Glory and Ashes” in Polish.
In 2008 Dudu Barak performed in front of the Jewish community of Boston, Ma.
In addition to all the awards that Dudu Barak received in competitions both in Israel and internationally, he also received the following awards:
- The Prime Minister’s Prize for Creative Work, 1988.
- ACUM Lifetime Achievement Award, 2008.
- Rosh Ha’Ayin Municipality Lifetime Achievement Award, 2008.
- Petah Tikva Municipality Lifetime Achievement Award, 2011.
- Netanya Municipality Lifetime Achievement Award, 2012.
- Bar Ilan University Lifetime Achievement Award, 2013.
- Ein Gev Music Festival Lifetime Achievement Award, 2013.
- Camp Bitnu’a Lifetime Achievement Award from, Eilat, 2014.
- Meir Ariel Award for Hebrew Creativity, Rishon LeZion Municipality, 2016.