Ari Kessler could become an international music star

By Candice Krieger, January 20, 2011

If ever there was to be a "kosher X Factor," A Jewish Star singing competition could be it.

Launched in 2009, the online contest, for both adults and children, aims to find the world's top Jewish talent. Entrants are invited to upload a video of themselves performing a Jewish song. It is then up to the public to vote.

Eleven-year old Ari Kessler is hoping to make it to the final of the junior category - for those aged 8 to 14. Ari, a pupil at Torah Temimah Primary School in Brent, is singing Me She'ana by Sheves Chaverim. He tells People: "I picked it because it sounded nice. It is one of my favourite songs."

Ari, who is in the school choir, says he loves to sing. "Sometimes I just make up funny songs and sing them. I don't really like pop songs. I like fast songs and listening to different singers." He is a fan of Mordechai Ben David, often referred to as "the king of Jewish music".

The prize includes $1,000 and a seven-day trip to Israel for two, but Ari, who lives in Golders Green, is being modest. "I don't know if I have a good chance. The problem is that it is quite confusing for people to vote."

Judges are world-renowned singer Avraham Fried, Chassidic comic Mendy Pellin and composer Eli Gerstner. Finalists will perform at a live show at the Brooklyn School of Music on February 20. Get voting.

Last updated: 10:43am, January 20 2011