The Music of Suhaila Salimpour’s Enta Omri

Hi all! The Atlanta debut of Suhaila Salimpour’s Enta Omri is just around the corner. One of the things that makes me so excited about this show is that it features classical Arabic music. Now, while that excites this Arabic music nerd, Arabic music is not something many people are very familiar with. I’d like to help bridge that gap with some preparation. Yes, many of these pieces are long, deep with meaning and every changing Arabic maqam (musical modes). I’d like to try to simplify some of these concepts for you in hopes that you will look to going to the show on January 14th. In fact, make sure you purchase your tickets here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/suhaila-salimpour-annual-intensive-afbd-plus-enta-omri-show-tickets-25352526088

Intro to the music of Enta Omri:

The music of Enta Omri is comprised of various Arabic songs well known across the Middle East and North Africa. The composers and singers of these songs are legends and are considered some of the best Arab musicians that ever lived. Composers of note include Mohamed Abdel Wahab, Baligh Hamdi, Riad al-Sunbati and Sayed Darwish. The voices of Om Kalthoum, Abdel Halim Hafez and Warda are instantly recognizable by lovers of Arabic music.

While some of these pieces in their full form are over an hour in length, the music of Enta Omri uses pieces of these songs for the purposes of dance presentation. Poetry plays a large role in Arabic music, and each song can elicit a deep emotional reaction to the poetry, even if the song is presented as an instrumental. If you are new to Arabic music, the following will give insight into each song.

Each of these pieces are typically performed with a full Arabic orchestra, called a firqah. Each firqah includes traditional Arabic instruments such as the kanoon, the oud, the riqq and the ney as well as some Western instruments such as the violin, cello and bass.

The topics explored in Arabic music vary around many themes of love, loss and other emotions. The combination of poetry along side the intricate use of the Arabic modal system (maqamat) can bring what is called tarab or musical ecstasy to an audience. Suhaila Salimpour’s Enta Omri explores her personal journey emoted through music and dance.  Over the next few days I’ll be posting about each of these pieces.

If you would like to dive deeper into the pieces presented, Suhaila has lyrics, video links and more information on her resources page found here: http://www.salimpourschool.com/100-compositions-every-belly-dancer-should-know/

Act 1

Andah Alek (I Call to You)

Composed by Mohamed Abdel Wahab | Sung by Warda

Khayef Marrah 

Composed by ­­­Baligh Hamdi | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

Koulli Amalak (Tell Me, What Did My Heart Do to You?)

Composed and Sung by Mohamed Abdel Wahab

El Hilwah Di (The Sweet One)

Sung and Composed by Sayed Darwish

Kanoon Taqsim – Baeid Annak (Far from You)

Composed by Baligh Hamdi | Sung by Om Kalthoum

Bahlam Bik (I Dream of You)

Composed by Munir Murad | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

Violin Taqsim – Yasmarani (Because of You, I Cannot Sleep)

Composed by Sayed Mekkawi | Sung by Om Kalthoum

Ana Kol Maoul El Toba (Every Time I Say Never Again)

Composed by ­­­Baligh Hamdi | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

Kamel El Awsaf (The Perfect Woman)

Composed by ­­­­ Mohamad el Mogy | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

 

Act 2

Mawoud (I’ve Been Promised)

Composed by Baligh Hamdi | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

Oud Taqsim – Leylet Hob (Night of Love)

Composed by Mohamed Abdel Wahab | Sung by Om Kalthoum

Zay El Hawa (Like the Wind)

Composed by Baligh Hamdi | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

Kanoon Taqsim – Daret el Ayam (Days are Passing)

Composed by Mohamed Abdel Wahab | Sung by Om Kalthoum

Ana Albi Lik Mayal To You, My Heart Leans

Composed by Mohamed El Mougy | Sung by Faiza Ahmed

Ana Fi Intizarak (I’m Waiting for You)

Composed by Zakaria A’hmad | Sung by Om Kalthoum

Kariat el Finjan (Fortuneteller)

Composed by Mouhammed El Mouj | Sung by Abdel Halim Hafez

Enta Omri (You Are My Life)

Composed by Mohamed Abdel Wahab | Sung by Om Kalthoum

Lissa Fakir (Do You Still Remember?)

Composed by Riad Al-Sonbati | Sung by Om Kalthoum

 

You can buy the Enta Omri album here: http://www.salimpourstore.com/products/enta-omri-album

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