VIP Israel offer for Elvis Costello

By Jennifer Lipman, May 25, 2010
The Grammy award winning singer pulled out of two dates in Israel last week

The Grammy award winning singer pulled out of two dates in Israel last week

Singer Elvis Costello has been invited on a VIP trip to Israel, just days after the star pulled out of concerts there for political reasons.

Mr Costello called his surprise decision to cancel two performances in Caesarea next month a matter of instinct and conscience. He said: “I cannot imagine receiving another invitation to perform in Israel, which is a matter of regret.”

Now education group StandWithUs have offered the Grammy award - winning musician a free five star tour, to coincide with a planned concert in Tel Aviv in August by his wife Diana Krall.

The trip would be designed to show Mr Costello the diverse nature of Israeli society and highlight the challenges Israel faces its efforts to promote peace.

The Los Angeles - based organisation have also encouraged the musician to to speak to Sir Paul McCartney and Madonna about performing in Israel.

Both artists resisted strong pressure from Palestinian campaigners to cancel tours in Israel, with Madonna calling the country “the energy centre of the world” when she sang there.

Roz Rothstein, co-founder and CEO of StandWithUs, said they wanted to help Mr Costello make an informed choice.

"Elvis Costello’s decision undermines instead of promotes peaceful coexistence.

“As a celebrity, he has a special responsibility to make sure his public positions are based on accurate information and are fair-minded.”

Last updated: 10:08am, May 25 2010