A concert performed by Emirati singer Balqees Fathi in the Saudi city of Jeddah on Wednesday night witnessed a high turnout of more than 3,000 women.
The first female-only concert in Saudi Arabia was organized under the patronage of Saudi Arabia's General Entertainment Authority (GEA) and part of the celebrations of the 46th National Day of the UAE, under the slogan “Together Forever.”
The concert witnessed a high interaction between the audience and Balqees, who performed a number of national songs, starting with the Saudi national anthem and followed by the Emirati anthem.
The audience, which included a large and diverse section of the Saudi community, enjoyed the concert and sang the songs with Balqees.
The Emirati singer ended her concert with the song “Long Live Salman, Oh Country,” and said: “This is a historic day, and a very special one for me. All throughout my career, I had never seen such interactive and enthusiastic audience. Truly, this is the best concert I ever performed.”
Ghada Ghazzawi, owner of GAG, the concert organizing company, told Asharq Al-Awsat that the concert is considered as a “jumpstart in the needs of the female society, a step towards change and a start of a series of only-female concerts that suit the particularities of the Saudi society.”
The concert lasted for three hours.
In a telephone interview with Asharq Al-Awsat, Balqees said: “The interaction of the audience during the concert was incomparable, from the moment I got on the stage.”
Balqees said that in light of the vision adopted by the government of The Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, “everything is possible in this treasured country.”
She said that before the start of the concert, her father, artist Ahmad Fathi called to offer her support.
“Your audience in Saudi Arabia is stronger. It is not surprising that you are singing today amongst your people,” he told her.
Balqees added: “The Saudi audience is uncompetitive and unparalleled in the Arab world.”