While looking into the Ukrainian connection to this ubiquitous Jewish standard, I came across a documentary film about the song, called Hava Nagila (The Movie).
I contacted the production company in Los Angeles, and they kindly allowed me to screen it for review.
In this week's Ukrainian Jewish Heritage episode, I described my search and reviewed the movie. You can read and listen to it here.
I also went one step past where the movie ends the story—YouTube. It seemed to me that in terms of storytelling technique, ending the story of Hava Nagila at YouTube was leaving the story unfinished. A hanging thread.
In the course of producing this series and presenting some of the episodes, I discovered that much work is being done to restore what is left of Ukraine's Jewish communities destroyed by the Nazis and Soviets in the last century.
So I thought I would check to see how popular Hava Nagila is today in its ancestral birthplace.
Very popular, it seems!
Do a google search for Hava Nagila Ukraine and you'll be amazed at what pops up!
I can save you a bit of time by starting you out with a few that I found. Enjoy!
Vinnytsia-Ukraine December 2013
Students in Kharkiv
ManSound in Israel 2012
Ukrainian musicians in Paris subway
Dnieper cruiseship lounge 2012