By Hanin Abu Alrub
Before Nabeel Shu’ail gave the first of his two performances in the South Theatre, Albawaba asked him about his feelings towards his audience. “If this is my audience, I will sing for their entertainment,” he said.
Nobody knows what happened to the South Theatre audience. It was if the festival audiences had abandoned the amphitheatre and there was only to be an audience of 3000. Before Nabeel, Asala Nasri had experienced the same problem with a total of 3000 attending her two performances.
Despite the below capacity attendance, the audience gave Nabeel an enthusiastic reception singing along with him as if they were his chorus. At 8.30 p.m., there were only 850 people sitting in the auditorium. The audience kept on arriving and when Nabeel came on stage at 9.30 their number had grown to 3000 of which 2500 were ticket holders.
Nabeel greeted his audience, who were mostly from the Gulf, by saying “I am happy to be with you and I convey the good wishes of the Kuwaiti people to our Jordanian brothers.” The audience, in turn, greeted him with loud celebratory cries and repeated chants of “Boss Shouf Nabeel”. Nabeel seemed to be delighted with his enthusiastic audience and seemed not to mind their relatively small number.
The Kuwaiti star began his performance with “The Love (Al-Hub)” from his latest album which was met with phenomenal success on its release. He then delighted the audience by responding to their repeated requests by singing “Maarwaak”, which has been one of his biggest hits for a long time.
Nabeel then sang three more songs and seemed to be so happy that he wanted to dance. One song was so popular that the star had to repeat it again. The audience kept shouting “Nabeel wave to us, raise your hands for us.” In his next songs he pointed to the audience making them feel he was singing the song to each one of them personally.
The end of the first hour of his program came at 10.45 a.m. after he had sung “Misk El Khitm”. This would have been a perfect end to the complete performance but Nabeel announced that after a short break, he would sing three more songs. This, however, was not to be, because when Nabeel noticed a fight had started on the stairs, he left the stage quickly and the show was over. It was if he had delivered half a show to half an audience. Nabeel must surely be hoping for a capacity audience for the last of his two Jerash performances on Sunday night.
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )