Magida el Roumi’s concert was the main attraction in the 2011 Jounieh Festival and it was quite an eventful concert. I had decided not to go and gave away the ticket to a cousin but I ended up going as he bailed out at the last second.
The concert was scheduled at 9 and we had to be at the parking lots near the Casino du Liban by 7 (Now we know what they are for). Since I live in Jounieh, I decided to go park somewhere near Fouad Chehab and walk to the concert instead of parking far away and waiting for shuttles to pick us up. Surprisingly there was barely any traffic around 7 and I found a parking spot easily.
We were greeted at the Fouad Chehab stadium entrance with scouts selling wine and peanuts. There were also several stands including a Taanayel-sponsored Saj, a Hotdog stand, and a Johnny Walker stand. I wish they had some free juice or ice cream stand instead as it was too damn hot to drink Whiskey.
The event was planned to start at 9 but like all other Lebanese festivals, it started an hour later. At 9:20 Georges Kordahi the party’s host made a small presentation on the Jounieh Festival, before Samir Geagea, head of the Lebanese Forces, showed up to the concert followed shortly by the President of the Republic Michel Sleiman. Magida el Roumi showed up around 10 pm and the concert was on its way.
Magida sang for almost 2 hours and listening to her live didn’t change my opinion about her. She has a very loud and annoying voice and I feel like she’s screaming all the time. No offense to the Magida fans. That’s just my opinion of her. Also, she kept on pointing out to our Lady of Harissa and thanking her for blessing this night and all to an extent I felt I was in some religious concert. Funnily enough, electricity went off Harissa for like half an hour.
At the end of the concert, President Sleiman decided to reward Magida for her achievements and there was a small ceremony on stage, then Magida sang a medley of folklore Lebanese songs to end the concert. Samir Geagea went on stage as well and danced dabke with the band.
In all, it was an entertaining night and a major success for the Jounieh festival organizers. Also, I didn’t know people were so fanatic about Magida as they were singing almost every song with her. I recorded some of her best songs which I will upload later on on YouTube.