x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Vintage sounds and a chilled-out vibe at Dubai Music Hall

Ramadan Masrah by Music Hall changes the game once again.

Nearly a dozen acts perform with the house band while audience members enjoy time with friends. Courtesy Music Hall
Nearly a dozen acts perform with the house band while audience members enjoy time with friends. Courtesy Music Hall

Only a few months after shaking up the local music scene with dazzling nights catered to music fusion, Music Hall once again changes the game by delivering an extraordinary suhoor experience.

The Masrah Ramadan concept is dedicated to classical Arabic music from old.

Where normal Music Hall nights are loud and raucous affairs, the vibe here is chilled and befitting the Holy Month.

From the simple set-up - roses flanking the stage and black-and-white Egyptian films silently playing on walls - the aim is not to groove along to the tunes, but to sit among friends and enjoy the vintage sounds coming from the stage.

One thing is unchanged, however: Music Hall keeps the line-up secret.

There are no hosts announcing the near dozen acts, neither do we know their names - they simply step on stage and perform until the curtains are drawn.

With each act evoking different styles and eras of Arabic music, the performances keep the crowd engaged at all times.

The standout on a recent evening was the third act. The female artists performed a 15-minute medley of Umm Kulthum classics. The technical feat required inspired the crowd to put down their card games, bewitched by the performance.

The appreciative vibe continued throughout the night with crooners and Oriental music ensembles wowing the crowd with further Arab classics.

Judging by the booked-out nights at Masrah by Music Hall, the UAE music crowd is always up for something more than the usual standard.

sasaeed@thenational.ae

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