Egyptian soprano Fatma Said honoured with Rafik Hariri Award at the Kennedy Center

Ahram Online , Friday 17 Feb 2023

Internationally renowned Egyptian soprano Fatma Said was offered the Rafik Hariri Award for Artistic Excellence during a special ceremony held at the Kennedy Centre for the Performing Arts, Washington DC.

Fatma Said


"I was extremely humbled to receive this honour alongside three incredible awardees: Sir Magdy Yakoub for social impact, Mr. Ahmed Abu Ghazaleh for business leadership and a special tribute award to the late Dame Zaha Hadid for her contribution to global architecture," wrote Said on her Facebook page.

"Thank you so much for having me and for this special recognition that I hold close to my heart," she added.

The ceremonym which took place on Tuesday, was organised by the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Centre for the Middle East. 

Tuesday marked "the 18th anniversary of the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, who was a firm believer in unlocking and investing in the economic and human potential of the Middle East and North Africa. Inspired by his legacy, the Hariri Centre for the Middle East was founded in 2011 by his son Bahaa Hariri and the Atlantic Council to perpetuate this vision," read the press release of the Atlantic Council.

The ceremony also featured Said alongside the Grammy Award-winning pianist Craig Terry.

Said is one of Egypt’s brightest stars in classical music, with a portfolio that includes significant accomplishments.

She was the first Egyptian singer to be accepted to La Scala Academy in Milan and went on to perform there in Mozart’s Magic Flute.

Said was also one of six musicians selected by BBC Radio 3 to take part in its New Generation Artist Scheme from 2016 to 2018.

In April, BBC Music Magazine named Fatma Said the “Newcomer of the Year” as part of its 16th Annual Awards.

She also won the Vocal Award for her debut album Al-Nour, which was released by Warner Classics and featured pianist Malcolm Martineau.

Said is also an ambassador for Opera for Peace and is supported by the stART academy of Bayer Kultur.

In December 2022, Said, accompanied by the United Philharmonic Orchestra under the baton of Nader Abbassiperformed at the Grand Egyptian Museum, being the first female singer to give a concert at this new venue.

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