Girl on Fire: Alicia Keys lights up Dubai jazz festival

US singer-songwriter Alicia Keys performs onstage during the 61st Annual Grammy Awards on February 10, 2019. (AFP)
Updated 23 February 2019
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Girl on Fire: Alicia Keys lights up Dubai jazz festival

DUBAI: American singer-songwriter Alicia Keys performed on Friday night against the shimmering backdrop of the Dubai Media City skyline, with a special guest appearance by some traditional Emirati drummers.

The 15-time Grammy-winning icon, who had the crown singing along to the New York anthem “Empire State of Mind,” was the headliner of the last night of the Emirates Airline Dubai Jazz Festival. The three-day event, held at the Dubai Media City Amphitheater, also saw performances by the Irish band Snow Patrol and British funk crew Jamiroquai.

The American singer, sometimes dubbed the “Queen of R&B,” is no stranger to the UAE. She first performed in Dubai Media City in 2004, then appeared in Abu Dhabi in 2008 and returned to Dubai for a concert at the Media City Amphitheater in 2013.

For her fourth concert here, Keys treated fans to the power ballad “If I Ain’t Got You” as well as “Girl on Fire” and “Fallin’,” which was from her 2001 debut album “Songs in A Minor.” That album catapulted her to fame and earned her a whopping five Grammy awards. Since then, she has released six albums that have earned her a total of 15 Grammy trophies.

Her concert at the festival comes just weeks after her astonishing performance at this year’s Grammy Awards, where she performed with two grand pianos – at the same time – a performance that was a tribute to pioneering black jazz pianist Hazel Scott and went viral on social media.

On Wednesday, “Chasing Cars” hitmaker Snow Patrol opened the festival, with supporting acts from local indie rock band Vandalye, and French jazz star Frederic Yonnet, who is known for his expertise in playing the harmonica.

Headlining the second day on Thursday was Jamiroquai, who rose to fame in 1996. They released their eighth album in 2017 after a long hiatus, updating their iconic funk music style with an electronic dance music (EDM) flavor.


‘Walk with a statement:’ The Nou Project announces new sneaker designs

Updated 25 May 2019
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‘Walk with a statement:’ The Nou Project announces new sneaker designs

  • The re-design came in three new colorways: Grey, burgundy and navy
  • The Nou Project was launched with the aim to broaden the way art is consumed and support emerging artists by providing them with a platform to gain recognition

DUBAI: Tucked away in Dubai’s artistic and cultural Alserkal Avenue, Saudi brand The Nou Project announced the latest re-design of its classic sneakers — the all-new ultra-low tops.

In a one-night only pop up in KAVE café, the brand’s founder, Nour Al-Tamimi, and co-designer, Basma Chidiac, announced the re-design that came in three new colorways: Grey, burgundy and navy.

“We want people to be able to walk with a statement,” Al-Tamimi told Arab News as she showed off her previous collections.

The pop up featured a 50 percent discount on all pairs, as well as two artists and a calligrapher available for buyers to customize any of the newly-bought sneakers. Tables topped with board games lined the space, while popcorn and cotton candy was also handed out­ to attendees.

With an environmental and sustainable mindset, the duo has invested heavily in the use of Micro Fiber material, which is also known as “Vegan Leather,” instead of actual leather. They are already known for their recycled rubber soles, a unique calling card for the edgy, homegrown brand.

Reported as the Kingdom’s first major sneaker brand, Al-Tamimi had no idea she would find such success when she started out.

“I had no idea this would become my life today,” Al-Tamimi said in a previous interview. “It’s exciting to be the first Saudi sneaker brand — that’s a milestone in itself.”

The Nou Project was launched with the aim to broaden the way art is consumed and support emerging artists by providing them with a platform to gain recognition — some of their sneakers feature striking and often thought-provoking artwork.

The new designs were created in collaboration with artists Nika Fontaine, Baron Von Fancy and Franz Klainsek who designed each pair with their unique style, ranging from street art to digital image manipulation and pop art.