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Wednesday, 11 December 2019

Egyptian singer Dina El-Wedidi feels 'blessed' after Cairo Opera House concert

After a successful concert at Cairo Opera House, El-Wedidi spoke to Ahram Online after the concert about being chosen among Time Magazine's Next Generation Leaders and her future plans

Eslam Omar , Sunday 26 May 2019
Dina El-Wedidi
Dina El-Wedidi and her band during their Ramadan concert at the Cairo Opera House, Tuesday 21 May 2019 (Photo: Eslam Omar)
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Well known Egyptian singer Dina El-Wedidi said she "felt blessed" with her full house concert held at the open theatre of the Cairo Opera House on Tuesday, which was part of a special programme organised by the Ministry of Culture to celebrate the holy month of Ramadan.

"I always feel so happy when I’m singing at the Opera House, especially as part of their programme and amid the atmosphere of Ramadan," El-Wedidi told Ahram Online after the concert.

Singing her popular songs El-Seira, El-Haram, Kotr El-Waga, Dawayer, Belad El-Agayeb and others, the independent songwriter performed almost all of her repertoire, including the album Tedawar Weterga, released in 2014, and other singles. The performance was rewarded with big applauses from the crowd, who sang along enthusiastically.

"Being surrounded by fans and sharing their vibes always makes me feel blessed," she added.

Dina El-Wedidi
Dina El-Wedidi during her Ramadan concert at the Cairo Opera House, Tuesday 21 May 2019 (Photo: Eslam Omar)

The popular singer was accompanied by her veteran band members; percussionist Azema, drummer Ahmed El-Shami, bassist Mounir Maher, guitarist Sherif Alaa, accordionists Wael El-Sayed, as well as Nader El-Shaer (nai) and Eslam Elabty (oud).

Dina El-Wedidi concert
Sherif Alaa (L), Azema, Ahmed El-Shamy and Mounir Maher was among Dina El-Wedidi band performed Ramadan concert at the Cairo Opera House, Tuesday 21 May 2019 (Photo: Eslam Omar)

The songwriter, who has in recent years gained success not only in Egypt, but also abroad, playing shows across the United States, Europe and Africa, has been recently featured on Time Magazine's Next Generation Leaders list with nine other trailblazers.

"I am honoured to have been featured in Time’s Next Generation Leaders for 2019 and to be presenting some music from Egypt as well," she said.

Wael El-Sayed
Egyptian composer, producer and accordionist Wael El-Sayed joined Azema and El-Shamy in playing percussion in a few tracks at Dina El-Wedidi's Ramadan concert at the Cairo Opera House, Tuesday 21 May 2019 (Photo: Eslam Omar)

Last year, she toured the US where she played in many important venues as part of the Centre Stage Initiative, coinciding with the release of her second album, Slumber, which has a different sound from her previous work.

"Slumber is my second album, which collects samples from trains and different sounds from the whole station, trying to build and create harmony and melody," the former El-Warsha Troup member explained.

"It’s definitely different from my first album, Turning Back. From my point of view, there is no comparison at all with my first album; it’s just different station in my music journey and was full of new discoveries," she said.

Dina El-Wedidi concert
Oud player Eslam Eabty (R) and Nader El-Shaer (nai) was among Dina El-Wedidi's featuring guests at her Ramadan concert at the Cairo Opera House, Tuesday 21 May 2019 (Photo: Eslam Omar)

The frequent participant in Fathy Salama workshops also revealed to Ahram Online that she is currently preparing her third album and is performing a few concerts in Egypt and Morocco soon.

"I’m working on my third album and I wish by the end of this year to share more details and music from it. I'm also working on some small gigs and different projects right now," El-Wedidi added.

Dina El-Wedidi's music style has significant traditional Egyptian and wider African influences. She has collaborated with The Nile Project, an initiative that includes musicians from Nile Basin countries.

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