On the offensive

Israeli teen pop star signs major record deal with US label

Noa Kirel’s deal with Atlantic Records reportedly largest ever signed by Israeli artist; singer, now in IDF, has sparked multiple controversies since enlisting earlier this year

Israeli pop star Noa Kirel in a music video posted online June 9, 2020. (YouTube screenshot)
Israeli pop star Noa Kirel in a music video posted online June 9, 2020. (YouTube screenshot)

Israeli teen pop star Noa Kirel on Wednesday signed a recording deal with Atlantic Records, a major US record label.

The deal is the largest and most comprehensive ever signed by an Israeli artist, Channel 12 reported.

The agreement was some two years in the works and includes management, public relations, marketing, strategy and production worth millions of dollars.

Kirel is reportedly planning to develop English-language material in the coming year, including video clips, which will be distributed globally by Atlantic.

Kirel released a new single, “Million Dollar,” on YouTube on Tuesday. The clip has racked up over 1.1 million views.

Atlantic represents leading contemporary artists including Bruno Mars, Cardi B, Coldplay, David Guetta, Jack Harlow and Ed Sheeran, and in the past hosted legendary musicians including Aretha Franklin, Otis Redding and Led Zeppelin.

Kirel became a viral hit on YouTube in 2015 and has gone on to star in Israeli movies and television series.

Kirel joined the Israeli Defense Forces in February and serves in the orchestra corps, which performs in parades, official military and state ceremonies, graduation courses and to entertain troops.

The IDF has had to establish special guidelines in dealing with the star, including forbidding fellow soldiers from taking selfies with her or photographing her on the base, Channel 12 reported.

Kirel sparked a controversy last month by appearing in an ad for the Yes satellite TV provider in which she plays a US soldier singing an adapted version of the Vietnam-era anti-war song “Let the Sunshine In” from the musical Hair.

The ad irked senior IDF officials, but Kirel apparently received permission to appear in the ad from the army. The staffer who issued the permission did not understand the script, however, Channel 12 reported.

Also last month, Kirel appeared in an Independence Day performance with IDF dancers. It caused the IDF’s Manpower Directorate head Moti Almoz to order the nixing of the position of military dancers after apparently learning about them for the first time when the clip of Kirel caused a stir.

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