DUBAI: Singers, supermodels and actors descended upon Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena last week for the 53rd annual Country Music Association Awards, wearing their best “giddy-ups.”However, it wasn’t all rustic denim and cowboy boots on the star-studded red carpet. In fact, there was plenty drama and glamour to be seen courtesy of the Middle East’s seasoned and emerging design talent who were responsible for dressing a number of the well-heeled attendees, including “Bachelorette” star Hannah Brown.
The former Miss Alabama stepped out on the red carpet wearing an elaborate dress from Dubai-based, Omani couture label Atelier Zuhra. The white, dotted ball gown featured a mock-neck and a full A-line skirt that trailed into a billowing train.
An Arab designer also found a fan in certified hitmaker Pink, who hit the red carpet with her husband Carey Hart and their two kids, wearing a long, burnt-orange dress from Dubai-based label Zeena Zaki. The “So What” singer played into the country theme by pairing the ensemble with a black cowboy hat tipped to one side.
Elsewhere, the evening’s host Carrie Underwood wowed in a floor-length, sequin-covered Elie Madi dress, which featured sheer paneling, gold embellishments and a long tulle train. Meanwhile, American singer Maren Morris accepted the Best Album of the Year award wearing a pastel blue top and matching billowing skirt designed by Saudi label Honayda.
The Country Music Association Awards almost fully honored and highlighted the women of country music — whose songs have been heavily dismissed on country radio over the years — until two words were uttered when they named its entertainer of the year: Garth Brooks.
Wednesday night’s show kicked off with a performance featuring country female acts across generations, included three female hosts and had Maren Morris as its top nominee. But in the final moments, Brooks won the top prize over Carrie Underwood, who many had hoped would be the first female to win entertainer of the year since 2011.
It wasn’t just the 2019 CMA’s where our regional talent was on full display. The red carpet at the 2019 Latin Grammy Awards was also awash with jaw-dropping ensembles plucked from the collections of Arab designers. Brazilian superstar Anitta turned heads wearing a Georges Hobeika crystal-embellished maxi skirt and a yellow crop top that featured a floor-trailing, oversized bow.
Puerto Rican singer Roselyn Sanchez, who picked up four awards for her album “El Mal Querer” also opted for a design by a Lebanese couturier, donning a multi-colored sequin gown with a thigh high slit by Nicolas Jebran.
Another memorable red carpet dress powered by a Beirut-based designer was the bright red Jean-Louis Sabaji gown donned by Mexican superstar Thalia for the 20th edition of the annual award show.