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05 December 2023

Artist Jahida Wehbe enriches Sharjah Music Festival with poems by top poets

By Wam

The first Sharjah World Music Festival, organised by Al Qasba, Sharjah's premier leisure and family destination in collaboration with Furat Qaddouri Music Centre, continued its 2nd day with a concert by Lebanese performer Jahida Wehbe, accompanied by the European Fusion Band, who gave live performances, combining word and tune, poetry and singing.

The musical evening was attended by a number of official figures, artists and journalists, most notably Sami Nmeir, Consul General of Lebanon in Dubai, and renowned TV host and presenter Berwin Habib.

All-round performer Jahida Wehbe expressed her happiness and satisfaction with the organiszing of the Sharjah World Music Festival for the first time, and her presence in the emirate, which is home to various cultural events. She hoped that the festival will be one of the largest and most prestigious musical extravaganzas in the Arab world.

Wehbe said it is her first concert after the death of her mother recently, and dedicated her first musical night in Sharjah to her mother, who she described as her first audience who supported and stood by her side in her early career beginnings.

Wehbe began her concert with one of the most famous poems by Lebanese poet Talal Haidar, followed by Mahmoud Darwish's poem. In her silken voice, Wehbe then took the audience on a journey to the good old days of music with Asmahan's song  (Ya Habibi Ta'ala), followed by a song by Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, known as the poet of love and revolution, in which Wehbe crossed the traditional concepts of love.

In an operatic voice, Wehbe enthralled the audience with a song written by Syrian poet Adonis, who she described as "a poem that was written in the darkness of senses". With her brilliant techniques and charming voice, Wehbe managed to take the audience with her on an imaginative journey before landing back on the ground with another song by poet Talal Haidar amid applause from the audience.

She rewarded the her audience with a song "Endak Bahriya" followed by Mohammad Abdul Wahab's song "Jefnaho Allam Al Ghazal", which saw more audience interaction. Wehbe then concluded the concert with one of her most famous and common song "Do Not Go to the Forest" by German novelist and poet Gunter Grass.

The European Fusion Band (Osama Abdul Rasoul Music Band), whose members accompanied Wehbe in playing tunes, included six talented musicians led by Qanoun player Osama Abdul Rasoul, violinist player Marwan Al Faqeeh, Cello player Bensi Hazar, Accordion player Phillip Trio, and drummers Seraj Al Mousli and Luke Bush.

On the outdoor stages, the audience enjoyed two separate live performances; the first one was by Syrian singer Amir Adam, who sang some of his most songs. The second performance was given by world singer and pianist Oxana Uncu who presented western songs and music amid applause from the audience.