Israeli pop star Noa Kirel wore trousers featuring photographs of controversial musician and businessman Kanye West when she attended Sunday’s MTV Europe Music Awards in Düsseldorf, Germany.
Speaking about her outfit with Israeli public broadcaster Kan, she said her aim was to wear “a fashion item with a message for the whole world; an item that signals that I am both Jewish and Israeli”.
“We have been experiencing a lot of antisemitism, especially in light of Kanye West’s statements,” she added. “I am proud to be an Israeli artist who represents Israel in the world.”
But who is the Israeli artist?
Who is Noa Kirel?
Kirel is an Israeli musician, actress and television host, who started her career in 2015.
She was born in the central Israeli city of Ra‘anana on April 10, 2001.
Kirel’s birth name was Noya but she had this changed to Noa (meaning motion) after being diagnosed with a serious kidney illness when she was three months old. A rabbi suggested to her parents to change her name so she would be able to move.
The 21-year-old rose to stardom when she appeared in a documentary series called Pushers, which showcased parents who guided their children to success in different areas. The show featured Kirel and her father, Amir, who had funded her career.
Kirel’s father runs an imported-glass business at the Barkan Industrial Park near the Israeli capital of Tel Aviv.
In 2015, Kirel performed her first song, Medabrim, on YouTube. Later that year, she released another song called Killer.
She represented Israel in the International Artist category at the MTV EMAs in November 2017.
Following numerous appearances on Israeli TV, American record label Atlantic Records and talent agency WME signed up the star.
MTV Europe Music Awards 2022
Under her new label, she released her first international single Please Don’t Suck in 2021 and performed another song, Bad Little Thing, at the Miss Universe 2021 ceremony.
Earlier this year, the singer announced she would be representing Israel at next year’s Eurovision.
“With a decision from my heart, I’m putting everything to the side and going into this with complete faith,” she said. “I have always felt proud to represent this country.”
Kirel completed her two-year mandatory service to the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in February 2022.