As the Israeli percussion group Tararam performed at Battery Park, the energy was so high that they seemed to draw the passing ferries, tugboats, sailing boats and even cruise ships a little closer, off course.

On Sunday, an eclectic downtown crowd enjoyed a beautiful summer afternoon and Tararam’s compelling beat. Three women and two men played a variety of instruments, from tin cans and metal barrels to more traditional drums. Tararam, often referred to as Israel’s “Stomp,” is known for its environmental advocacy through their use of recycled instruments. The insistent rhythms recall Africa and yet Tararam’s sound is quintessentially Israeli.

Founded in 1997 by artistic director Doron Raphaeli, Tararam has nurtured generations of Israeli percussionists. Alongside the Hudson River, the understanding between the different drummers was compelling. Without looking at one another, they didn’t miss a beat.

The performance was part of this year’s Kulturfest, presented by National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene and the Museum of Jewish Heritage, in collaboration with UJA-Federation of NY, and Capital One.

Watch for the final Kulturfest events later this month:
August 16: The Yiddish Art Trio at Pangea
August 21: Klezmer brunch at City Winery
August 21: Eddy Portnoy at the Museum of Jewish Heritage
August 28: Tom Oppenheim at the Museum of Jewish Heritage

The Golden Bride, an operetta, nominated for two Drama Desk awards, is running at the Museum of Jewish Heritage until August 28.

Sharon Anstey is a writer and business consultant.