Ambassador Dieter W. Haller greeted 250 guests of various nationalities, including members of the English and Arabic press.
“The embassy has always been keen on offering a stage for young, talented and intelligent Saudis,” said the German envoy, who is on his second tour of duty in the Kingdom.
He added: “It’s a great honor for us to host this cultural event because we see that the young Saudi generation is creative, dynamic and very talented.”
To illustrate the point, he added that a documentary depicting the empowerment of Saudi women, would be shown at the international film festival in Berlin on Feb. 22. Although he will not be attending the event in person, he has promised to send a video message of support.
Embassy Cultural Attache Dr. Rafael Heinish said the embassy decided to hold the open stage night to provide a platform for the thriving Saudi music scene.
“Tonight’s performance brought together people with diverse backgrounds. The nascent music scene in Riyadh is very promising and full of great talent,” he said.
“With every cultural event we discover new and fascinating aspects of Riyadh’s rapidly growing cultural life. We are very happy to be part of this,” he added.
The cultural show kicked off with Layla, a young Saudi woman, playing guitar and singing pop and country songs. She was followed by pianist Eman Gusti, who played classical and modern pieces, delighted guests who burst into a deafening applause.
Asked how she learned to play the piano, she said: “I learned to play by ear with the help of my mother.”
Gusti accompanied Abdullah Sembawa who sang the Arabic song “Be Rohi Fatat” (In My Soul), then performed “All of Me” and “Someone Like You.”
The 23-year-old Sembawa, a dental student at Riyadh Elm University, told Arab News: “It makes me feel good that the guests were happy with my performance. I hope to share my talent with more people.”
He has been singing since the age of 10 and has performed in various events in the capital.
Later the Remedy and Semba band delighted the audience with rap and pop music while the band Reminisce offered blues, jazz and funk music. The Levant band showcased well-known Arabic and English pieces.
The bands Min Al Riyadh and Mizan wrapped up the evening with a selection of their own compositions, which ranged in style from jazz to a fusion of Eastern and Western sounds.