Lipa Conquers Lubavitch: Soul II Soul 5769

By:Yossi Zweig
pictures courtsey: COLLIVE.COM

All I can say is, “I wanna be a “Lupavitcher.” This past Motzei Shabbos, Jan. 10th, 2009, Lipa came to Lubavitch at the George Wingate Auditorium for Soul II Soul’s 7th annual concert benefiting the
Chasdei Zahavi Foundation. The show was a NO/IT production, produced by Naftoli Olivestone, featuring music by a very special and talented hand picked Orchestra, and the world renown Shira Choir. He came, he performed, he conquered. The evening started off with a video presentation of the Rebbe making havdalah and the lighting of
candles. The lights came on on stage and there was the Orchestra. In the corner of the stage in the spotlight was the world famous Shira Choir, conducted by Shraga Gold. They started singing Hamavdil Bein Kodesh Lechol (Lubavitch niggun) and flowed into an intro of Bourich Haba Lipa Rishoina. Then Lipa appeared. He is wearing a majestic blue beketcha with metallic gold highlighted Chinese characters.

Lipa and the Shira choir sang Heini Kel (MBD old school) which flowed right into Shelo Osani Goy, in middle of which Lipa pronounces “I’m so proud to be a Lubavitcher yid”. Lipa told the crowd that it is important to tie in the kedusha of shabbos to rejoicing that we are yiddin (shelo osani goy). “The reason for the beketcha,” said Lipa, “is because Lubavitch is the only one that has a Bais Medrash in China.” Lipa then continued with Reb Zishe. He announced that he has sung by many Lubavitch weddings and knows what they like. He then proceeds to sing Arba Midois which flowed into Mi Sheomar. The crowd went wild. The kids were singing loudly, everyone was clapping, stomping and was just uplifted.

Lipa mentioned that the situation in Eretz Yisroel is very tense now. The next song was one filled with great meaning. He started singing U’b’frat Al Yoshvei Eretz Yisroel
with much feeling and emotion. When he was done you could feel the love in the room that everyone felt for our brothers and sisters in Israel. It was truly overwhelming. Lipa then moved on to Torah
Beksav-Baal Peh where he started substituting words for Rambam, Tanyeh, etc. The crowd loved it. It took a few minutes for the crowd to calm down, at that point it was time for a special video presentation. The video which I am told will not be made public at this point shows Lipa entering a classroom where world famous comedian/news reporter Mendy Pellin is teaching a “Lubavitch class”. Needless to say it went on for almost 10 minutes and was the most funniest video I have ever seen, Lipa or otherwise.

The second half started with the Shira Choir singing Tzomo Lecho (Lubavitch) joined by Lipa. Now Lipa was in Lubavitch and Lubavitch was loving him. “You have to do mitzvos,” said Lipa, “No one knows that better than Lubavitch, whether shaking lulav or putting on teffilin so let’s sing together Tizkeh L’mitzvos. One of the most important and easy mitzvos is tzedakkah so “geb a bissel gelt”. Lipa didn’t even get to finish singing the song as the singing and applause were thunderous.

The Shira Choir and Lipa sang an amazing rendition of K’ayol Taaroig (Lubavitche) and then he told the Oilam that it was time to “Wake Up”.

You can tell the mood was about to change, Lipa changed gears. He told of the terrible massacre recently in Mumbai and he wanted to sing a new song, a personal letter to moisheleh entitled “Moishele’s Neshomo”. Yanky Teitelbaum created a slide show which showed Chabad’s slain Shluchim to Mumbai, Rabbi Gavriel and Rivka Holtzberg and their two year old descendant Moshe. You can see the video below and feel for yourself what this song meant to everyone.

Moishe’le Neshama’le from on Vimeo.

Schmeltzer, in the same somber note said that at this time a kapittel of tehillim should be said. He then proceeded to sing softly “Halleluhu El B’kodsho” with just a guitar and a drum and a tambourine.

“From such a situation, you have to look to the future and keep song in belief in Hashem so we can be zoche to build a “Binyan Adei Ad.” Lipa invented a special English “grammen” for this evening that was tailored for Lubavitch. When he finished, every voice in the room was chanting “Lupavitcher”. Soul II Soul has a song that was
written by Shmuel Goldman, entitled Soul II Soul, which Avraham Fried sang last year. Now it was Lipa’s turn. A good song is a good song, but when Lipa sings it, it turns into a great song with everyone
singing along.

Lipa and the Shira Choir both dressed up for this next song, Sholomo Aleichem a Yid (Karahot/Fried), and with Lipa, it was comical and very entertaining.

Lipa then sang Raboisai and said,
“Wait, we can’t finish this evening without a story from the Baal Shem Tov,” and proceeded to tell a tale. Everyone went wild, this was their element and Lipa was one of them. The ONLY way to end an evening with
Lipa is by picking up your hands and dancing to “Hentelech”.

Here is a quote from COL “The endless references to Lubavitch terms – such as Shlichus, Mivtzoim, Tanya and Bitul – didn’t seem to repel haredi participants from Boro Park, Williamsburg and even the Litvish
stronghold of Lakewood, NJ.”

The only thing left is to ttend Lipa’s mega concert “The Event” (March 1 at the Madison Square Garden’s WaMu Theater) for more info please visit

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