Wednesday, April 19, 2006

What is the fascination with Haifa Wahbi?

Sometime ago, when we first posted about the supposed "ban" on Haifa Wahbi performing in Morocco, we were inundated with emails from people supporting her. Then when the "ban" was overturned and we commented on it, we had emails from those who thought she was the embodiment of "sin" and should be thrown out of the country. Obviously the Lebanese singer is very popular and I will try and find a cd at some stage to see what all the fuss is about. Hopefully it is not simply that she has a pretty face.

So, for all of you for whom too much Haifa Wahbi is never enough, here is the latest news.

Haifa has announced that she will not return to her former production company ‘Rotana,’ and that she will instead finance the production of her upcoming album.

She explained the decision as a need to try something new away from the guidelines of production companies. Haifa added that her current situation, with her rising popularity, does not allow for her music to be the property of one single company that forces exclusivity. She stated that she intends on distributing her music to a variety of music channels.

However, if you are hanging out for the release of Haifa’s upcoming album, you will have a bit of a wait as it will be postponed due to her first leading role in a major motion picture.

Lebanese director Randa Alshihal revealed that Haifa plays the role of a fight club owner who becomes involved with a French boxer named Ibrahim Saloum, of Arab origin. She gets drawn into a scheme crafted by the boxer and his friends to kidnap three of Ibrahim’s rivals. Sounds .... um... interesting?

The film, produced by Tunisian Tareq Bin Amar features a number of musical and dance performances. The director is currently negotiating with American star Harvey Kettle to possibly join the cast. Filming of the scenes is scheduled to begin in April on location in Tunisia.

Haifa recently filmed the new music video for the song ‘Rajab’ with director Hadi Al Bajouri. In the clip Haifa plays the role of a gypsy who ends up at a coffee house near the sea packed with fishermen where she meets a man named ‘Rajab.’ She seeks Rajab’s assistance to win the love of his handsome friend. Haifa Wahbi obviously has an eye for a complex storyline.

In the midst of all this hectic work Haifa, in front of the cameras of the Moroccan media, gave blood samples for a test for HIV. The test was given by the African Organization to fight Aids in Rabat. Haifa was tested in front of the public to create awareness of the seriousness of the disease and how people must be tested.

Haifa’s business manager revealed that Haifa was not banned from performing in Morocco; the singer was given permission to enter and is currently there. It was rumored that Moroccan officials rejected a request by Haifa to hold a charity concert for HIV research.

So I hope that clears up the mystery. I know how you were just dying to know.

Our earlier stories:

  • Haifa Wahbi in Morocco

  • Morocco rejects Haifa Wahbi

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