Mohammed Assaf: Arab Idol
It is 22 June 2013 and Palestine exults. The streets of Gaza are packed from dusk until dawn. People sing, dance and celebrate because Mohammed Assaf has just won “Arab Idol”. At 22, the young Gazan singer wins the second season of the “Idol” franchise of the Arab world. His immaculate smile, his childish allure and his deep voice conquer once and for all, the hearts of millions of spectators.
Throughout the lead up to the final, Assaf becomes a star across the Arab world in Lebannon, Syria, Palestine and the Emirates. But on the evening of the final, he becomes more than that: Assaf is an idol. Even the president of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas picks up his phone to congratulate “the voice of Palestine” who had “brought so much honour upon his people” in the worlds of the leader.
A symbol of unity for the Arab world, an emblem of Palestinian dignity, the voice of the Palestinian youth filled with hope… Mohammed Assaf garners unanimous support. We met him in Dubai where he has been living since winning the competition to discuss his extraordinary story… from the complications of his trip to Egypt for the first audition for Arab Idol, to his new life since winning.