Morocco World News
Fez, February 20, 2012
Nancy Ajram is due to perform this year at the 11th edition of Mawazin Festival to be held between 18 and 26 May 2012, in Rabat.
This is the second time that the Lebanese singer participates in Mawazin Festival after her 2008 concert, which was attended by more than 50 thousand spectators.
According to ‘‘Moroccan Cultures’’ Association, Nancy Ajram’s invitation to take part in Mawazine Festival this year is due to the “remarkable success of her previous concert in 2008.”
Nancy Ajram is to perform on Sunday 20 May in ‘Nahda’ theater, which is reserved to stars from the Middle East.
A couple of days ago, the Tunisian Minister of Culture Mehdi Mabrouk declared his refusal to the participation of artists who rely on nudity in their performance in this year’s edition of Kartaj Fetival, one of the most famous festivals in the Arab World. Among the names that the Minister mentioned were Lebanese singers Nancy Ajram, Elissa, the Egyptians Sherin Abed Al Wahab and Tamer Hosny. The Minister’s declaration was considered by many people as the first effect of the rule of the Islamists in Tunisia on Art.
The Tunisian Minister also stated that he is very careful about the presence and the participation of true and respectful artists in this year’s Edition of Kartaj Festival, such as Lotfi Bouchnak and Latifa.
He also declared that he would discuss the participation of the Lebanese Melhem Barakat and hinted at the possibility that the great Lebanese singer Fairouz might take part in the festival.
This stands in stark opposition to the deafening silence of the Moroccan government, led by the moderate Islamists PJD.
While in opposition, the PJD members were vocal in expressing their opposition to the participation of a number of artists in Mawazine. Yet, With their coming to power, many Moroccans are wondering where the PJD will stand vis-à-vis the festival this year and what will be its position regarding the participation of artists who have been banned from participating in other festivals.
Since it was launched over a decade ago, Mwazine has more often than not been at center of heated controversies.
Many Moroccans have expressed their disgruntlement over the policy followed by the festival’s executives. The latter invite high caliber singers, who come to perform for less than an hour and earn exorbitant pays.
The announcement a week ago of the participation of American R&B singer, Mariah Carey in the closing ceremony of the festivals has stirred controversy in Morocco, as she is due to receive 830 thousand dollars for her performance, more than Colombian singer Shakira who received 772 thousand dollars for her last year’s participation in the festival.
Moroccans do not only oppose this squandering of hard currency over foreign artists, but also the fact of ignoring Moroccan artists, who are often relegated to secondary roles and afforded stingy financial compensation.
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