Myriam Fares to perform in Cyprus

Myriam Fares is known as the ‘Queen of the Stage.’ (AFP)
Updated 16 April 2018

Myriam Fares to perform in Cyprus

DUBAI: Dubbed the “Queen of the Stage” by the Arab media, Lebanese superstar Myriam Fares is set to perform in Cyprus on April 28, it was announced on Sunday.
The singer, dancer and actress will take to the stage at the Elexus Hotel Resort & Spa in the city of Girne, treating local fans to a flavor of the Middle East.
Myriam, 34, is set to perform a clutch of her most popular songs, including “Aman,” “Ana Wel Shoq” and others.
She will swing her hips and sing her heart out four days before her birthday on May 3 and shared the announcement on her social media pages, posting a poster for the concert in which she is wearing a backless magenta dress and clutching a cobalt blue electric guitar.
Fares is set to entertain fans in Cyprus fresh off a sojourn in London, where she stayed at the Shangri-La Hotel and posted a flurry of photos of her time in the city.
In many of the photos, she can be seen posing in front of floor-to-ceiling windows that showcase the expansive British capital, including Tower Bridge and the River Thames. She shared photos of everything from her tea breaks to her workout sessions and also posted a snap of herself at a food market, standing dangerously close to a bakery full of good old carbohydrates.
The singer, who is as famous for her curly locks as she is for her music, released her first album in 2003 and made her acting debut with TV soap opera “Itiham” in 2014. Later that year, she played the role of Tinkerbell in a musical version of Disney’s “Peter Pan” in the UAE.
Fares has released five studio albums to date and broke a record on music streaming service Anghami for the most played artist and most played album for her fifth album “Aman.”
The Lebanese powerhouse is married to American businessman Danny Mitri and has a son called Jayden, who was born in February 2016.
Earlier this year, fans went wild online when she shared an Instagram post showing off her son’s curly hair.
“Like mother, like son,” one follower commented on her Instagram post. “It’s unbelievable how much his hair looks like yours,” another wrote.

Cirque du Soleil in Saudi Arabia: The perfect tribute to a rich culture

Crique du Soleil in Riyadh. (Arab News)
Updated 24 September 2018

Cirque du Soleil in Saudi Arabia: The perfect tribute to a rich culture

  • Crique du Soleil created a spectacular show in Riyadh
  • They paid tribute to Saudi culture and heritage

RIYADH: The circus — a place that is almost synonymous with joy and delight. Since time immemorial, circuses have been places of celebration and glee, and few as much as the premier name in the industry: Cirque du Soleil.

The show has had a devoted fan in me since 2006, when I attended a performance of their production “Quidam” and my definition of the word “circus” was turned upside-down. Their unique approach to art, performance, costumes and music has secured their status as a household name and a benchmark for all other circus shows to be measured against.

On Sunday night, Saudi Arabia’s National Day, the circus brought their incredible acrobatics to Riyadh’s King Fahad Stadium and it turned out to be a night to remember.

Prior to the event, Cirque’s Vice President of Creation Daniel Fortin offered little in the way of spoilers but hinted that we would see something the likes of which we never had before. With the promises of exclusive new acts, music, costumes and stage tricks piquing my excitement, I joined a throng of green-and white-clad spectators flooding the stadium. Performing to a sold-out crowd, the show kicked off at exactly 8.30 p.m. and the magic truly began.

Barely five minutes into the show, something stole over me as I settled into the rhythm of the music, something I saw flickering over the faces of those in the crowd around me: Recognition. We were seeing ourselves, our identity, echoed back at us, but with a twist. We saw ourselves through someone else’s eyes — someone respectful and admiring.

As a Saudi youth today, it has become an unfortunately common occurrence to face negativity from various outsiders, born of ignorance or fear. It has become dreary and repetitive to have to continually defend my people and my culture from those who have no wish to understand us.

But at this show? I saw my country once more through the eyes of an outsider, but this time, it was different. I saw my culture and my heritage lauded, celebrated, delicately fused with that tangible Cirque du Soleil flair. The attention to detail was careful, almost loving, but also daring and outlandish. It was a glorious fusion of classic Saudi aesthetics with the ethereal, bizarre beauty of Cirque du Soleil.

The symbolism was not always obvious, sometimes it was subtle, constrained to the beat of a drum or hidden in a snatch of song. Other times, it was blatant and bold, in the sloping hump of an elegantly clumsy camel costume, or the billowing of the Bedouin Big Top in the gentle breeze. And yet, unmistakeably, I felt the Saudi influences in every note of the performance. It felt like an homage, and yet it did nothing to diminish its own identity. It remained unquestionably a Cirque du Soleil performance, only below the usual circus frippery, there was a ribbon of something else that lay coiled beneath the surface. Something bright, vibrant green. Saudi green.

The spectacle rounded off with an astonishing display of fireworks, so plentiful that for a moment, the sky glowed bright as day. To me, each one felt like a promise fulfilled. A dream achieved. A miracle witnessed. Here, on my own home soil, it was the perfect tribute to a rich and vivid culture.