PBS Millennium 2000 Broadcast

PBS Millennium 2000 Broadcast

Partial transcript of the PBS broadcast

First, this is the PBS web site description of the recorded part of the Haifa presentation, from which the other announcer, named Susan, was attempting to read during the performance:

Peace Concert in Haifa, Israel
Hour 23, 3:40am US/Eastern time

A winding uphill street links Haifa harbor with Mt. Carmel where the gold-domed Baha'i Temple is situated. Six women singers stand on the steps, performing part of the "Halleluya" in Hebrew. A "shofars," the horn used on the Jewish High Holidays, sounds its call.
"Darbucas," Arabic clay drums, invite hundreds of dancers to join a celebration of peace and harmony between Arabs and Jews and among all nations. They sing "Small World" and "Shalom Aleichem", "peace be with you."


It begins with Will Durst saying:] (Will is a comedian)
From the sands of Hawaii, to the sands of Haifa - next.

I'm Will Durst, and this is the PBS Millennium 2000 coverage.

Now, Haifa bills itself as an Israeli city where Arabs and Jews live side-be-side.

The good news is that this is an ecumenical celebration. Here's how it shapes up: Jews and Arabs are going to whoop it up over a Christian date in front of a Baha'i temple.
Now, that's the good news.
The bad news is -- they've got a chorus of kidlets who are going to perform "It's a Small World."
Let's all think about something else for a few minutes, shall we? [He closes his eyes with a faintly pained look.]

[They go to a 30-second flashback on Fleming and the discovery of penicillin, then Will Durst does another minute-and-a-half of shtick about "things we still don't know". Then...]

And we are going... Susan? Are we going to Haifa? [Susan speaks]

Yes, we are going to Haifa, and you previewed just a little bit of the celebration. It will take place in the street, winding uphill, that links Haifa harbor with Mt. Carmel.
You're right, the kids are going to sing "It's a Small World," but, we're going to start off with the golden-domed Baha'i Temple. We're listening to the Carmel Acappella Choir performing part of "Hallelujah."

[They are on the steps of one of the terraces below the Shrine, with the Shrine behind them.]
[The remainder of the seven minute performance is some Arabic and Jewish dancing and music (including a little belly dancing) on Ben Gurion Avenue (and, the kids dancing and singing "Small World"), mostly looking up toward the terraces and the Shrine, interspersed with some brief aerial views of the Mediterranean beach to the west, the coastal highway and the top of Mt. Carmel.]

Haifa, by the way, is the third largest city in Israel. The only city that has a truly mixed population of Jews and Arabs, coexisting in peace and cooperation.
The message of this particular event: Promoting peace and harmony between Jews and Arabs in this region, and among all nations.

[Switch back to Will Durst, seen holding his head in a mock-delirium daze, quietly and haltingly singing]

It's a small world after all. It's a small world af... Can't get it out -- you can't -- you just can't get it out of your head...
Good morning, my name is Will Durst, this is the PBS Millennium 2000 coverage. And, as you know, here at PBS, our mission statement is to engage and to inform; and, since it is IMPERATIVE to be educational, let me tell you that Haifa is the world headquarters of the Baha'i Faith.

[reading with a little difficulty]

In the mid-1800's, in Iran, a prophet known as the Bab, an Arabic word for "the Gate", began preaching a new revelation that was to replace the Koran. The Bab's message ended polygamy and other Islamic customs, and predicted the unity of all religious faiths under one roof.
The new cult ran into political problems, as you might imagine, and, after six years -- after starting his mission -- six years after starting his mission, the Bab [motions, with one hand, a slit to his throat]... executed.
He left a prophecy that a new manifestation would soon arrive and show the world a new path - you know.
In 1863, Mirza Husayn Ali, called "the Glory of God", Baha'u'llah, announced that he was the man that the Bab had predicted, and a new religion, Baha'i, was born.
In the first twenty years, 20,000 Baha'is were martyred, in Iran, for their beliefs. Exiled to Baghdad, Baha'u'llah spent the rest of his life as a political prisoner of the Ottoman Empire, and, finally, was sent to Acre, not far from Haifa.
The Baha'i Faith aims to be a universal religion. It's tenets include: abolition of racial and religious prejudice, equality of the sexes, development of an international language, universal education, universal faith based on the identity of all the great religions...
It's kind of like a one-world religion.
It's - a - small - world, - after - all...

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