JEDDAH: The MusicHall, organized by the General Entertainment Authority (GEA), is taking place at King Abdullah Sports City until July 18 as part of the Jeddah Season festival, gathering a variety of international acts under one roof.
Friday’s event featured a tribute to Frank Sinatra, Fadia Najm singing Egyptian Tarab songs, the Chehade Brothers, Italian singer Tino Favazza, Latin American pop, reggae and more.
“The MusicHall was created 18 years ago, with the first one being in Beirut, Lebanon. The idea is instead of just having a DJ, we have live stage performers and cover as many different cultures and genres,” said MusicHall co-owner Jean Elefteriades.
“They’re back-to-back acts. With every 15 minutes of live performance, there’s a 15-minute DJ break while the stage is prepared for the next act.”
Rami Chehade of the Palestinian Chehade Brothers, who performed for a Saudi audience for the first time, told Arab News: “It was an amazing experience. We were well received by the audience and their warm reactions.”
He added: “We were very happy with their interaction tonight, and they were happy with this change. They were looking forward to this art.”
Colombian singer Jenni Paula, who performed in the Kingdom for the first time, told Arab News: “Saudi people are very kind, from the airport to the hotel. They were accommodating and helpful, and had a smile on their face all the time.”
She said: “I’m very happy to be performing in Saudi Arabia. I believe it’s the first time a Colombian singer performs here, on this kind of stage or event.”
She added: “I hope people visit the MusicHall because it offers various international shows. Saudi people have to see these amazing shows that we’re bringing just for you.”
Nojoud Abdullah, who attended Friday’s event, told Arab News: “I really appreciate the GEA’s efforts. They paid so much attention to detail, and visitors are really happy.”
Her favorite performance was that of Favazza. “His performance was very engaging and energetic,” she said.