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PHOTOS: 'Arab Idol' winner Muhammad Assaf performs in Ramallah

Tens of thousands gather to hear Muhammad Assaf perform in Ramallah. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

Photos by May Castelnuovo

When Muhammad Assaf won the ‘Arab Idol’ singing competition last month, spontaneous celebrations took place throughout Gaza and the West Bank.

Upon winning the pan-Arab competition, Assaf promised to hold three free concerts in cities in the West Bank – in Ramallah, Nablus and Hebron. As Abeer Ayyoub wrote for +972 last month, with his win, Assaf did what politicians haven’t been able to: he united Palestinians.

On Monday July 1, 2013, Assaf performed for tens of thousands of Palestinians at Al-Umam Square adjacent to the Muq’ata presidential compound in Ramallah, drawing fans and revelers from around the West Bank. Although he only performed four songs, the concert continued the revelry surrounding his ‘Idol’ victory.

Spectators were climbing onto any available vantage point to see Muhammad Assaf perform. Rooftops around the venue were in high demand. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

The stage at Al-Umam Square in Ramallah. In 2001, during the first Palestinian UN bid, the square was decorated with flags of the world. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

A fan climbs a flagpole in Al-Umam Square, recalling images of the first intifada, and the monument in Ramallah’s ‘Time’ Square. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

This was the first ever concert to take place on Al-Umam square. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

Muhammad Assaf onstage. On both sides of the stage, a screen showed clips of an astronaut placing a Palestinian flag on the moon. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

Youngsters enjoying the music of Palestine’s latest symbol of unity. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

Starstruck young fans atop a truck, trying to get a glimpse of Assaf. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

T-shirts reading ‘We support Muhammad Assaf,’ were the evening’s most popular attire. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

Children born into an age of reality television, in a land where reality TV meets political reality, following their first encounter with an idol. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)

It was a night for the entire family. July 1, 2013. (May Castelnuovo)


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    1. annie

      love it

      Reply to Comment
    2. XYZ

      Based on oonverage of this singer and the McDonalds refusal to open in Ariel here at 972 and other “progressive” blogs, I have come to realize that these two things ar the most pivotal events in the history of the Middle East, if not the world. To think, this singer will bring about and end to the Arab/Israeli conflict, the Shia-Sunni split, the civil war in Syria, the Iranian nuclear crisis, and he will herald the coming of democracy and prosperity to the entire Arab Middle East.

      Reply to Comment
    3. What a wonderful celebration. Those children are going to remember this for the rest of their lives

      Reply to Comment
    4. Aml

      Mabrook habiby بحبك

      Reply to Comment

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