Thursday, September 13, 2012
A Night at Haroun Ar-Rashid (29 Oct 2008)
I couldn't help myself. I love music as much as most people, more than some, and Arabic music more than your average whitey. The opening singers (all five of them, working together) weren't bad...in fact, they coulda been contenders on 'Arabian Idol,' if in fact they weren't already professionals (I don't really think they were, I recognized quite a few of their songs and knew they were covers...but then, I know that it's not uncommon for Arabic pop stars to do each other's songs over and over). Still, I couldn't help wondering if they were done yet. They'd been singing for almost two hours, which put it just before 1:30 a.m., and I had not LEFT my hotel at 11:30 - a time when, in Korea, if I weren't already in Seoul, you can bet your bippy I was not leaving Bundang, not even leaving the 'Dong, if you got right down to it - and shelled out to hear these guys. Mustafa, the waiter came and asked if I wanted my dessert, and I did - at least it would keep me awake til Dina took the stage. Just when I thought I couldn't take any more, they took their bows and left the stage. Humd'Allah! About 20 gut-wrenching minutes later (gut-wrenching because, apparently, Arabic food and I are not friends right now, something I've given a lot of thought to in the bathroom this morning), the curtains reopened to show the full musical contingent (22 pieces, in this case) that traditionally accompanies a dancer in Egypt. They played a song, and then Dina took the stage.