Lebanese celebs bringing black back! LBDs & black gowns glide the red carpet at Murex d’Or

Published September 9th, 2014 - 03:39 GMT

Black is not woeful and Lebanon’s female celebrities will not tell you otherwise.

At last week’s Murex d’Or award ceremony at least three divas – Carole Samaha, Nawal al-Zoghbi and Nancy Ajram – as well as TV host Paula Yacoubian walked the red carpet wearing chic black evening gowns, proving once again that the color is a timeless winner.

Red and white were also dominant color choices during the festivities held at the Casino du Liban, north of Beirut, and broadcast on Future TV Friday evening.

“Celebrities in the Arab world rarely resort to stylists or image managers,” fashion commentator and consultant Hadia Sinno told The Daily Star.

“Thus, they resort to safer options, such as black, which has always been trendy.”

Sinno said that her favorite dress from the ceremony was Yacoubian’sBasil Soda number. “It really suits her strong personality,” Sinno said. “I loved that dress on Paula.”

The Murex d’Or, French for the Golden Murex award, is the brainchild of Lebanese physicians Zahi and Fadi Helou and recognizes achievements in the domains of acting, singing and entertainment in Lebanon and the Arab world.

The award’s name was a tribute to the murex seashell, which produces the Tyrian purple dye, widely used during Phoenician times.

Wearing a black beaded classic ball gown designed by Lebanese dressmaker Zuhair Murad, singer Nawal al-Zoghbi looked stunning, and her shining blond hair contrasted beautifully with her red ruby lips and earrings.

She won a lifetime achievement award for her work in music, a career that began 20 years ago.

Zoghbi’s bright red studded purse, however, was certainly a major fashion faux-pas, as the vividness of its color contrasted with the rest of her ensemble in ways that were less than pleasing.

As for Carole Samaha, who won the “Murex” for her newly released album “Ihssass,” (Feeling) and a Murex for the best song of the year “Wahshani Bladi” (Missing my country), she embraced the old adage “simple is beautiful” and looked radiant, with her hair up in an effortless bun.

Samaha opted for an elegant blue-black Roberto Cavalli dress and coupled it with a sparkling silver minaudière and diamond earrings.

“Carole has large shoulders and she always likes to accentuate that trait,” Sinno said. According to her, Samaha should go for cuts that draw attention away from her shoulders.

Pop sensation Nancy Ajram also opted for a simple look, wearing a black Loris Azzaro sheath dress, with silver accessories, and resembled a Greek goddess.

Ajram, who won the award for the “best Lebanese singer,” stuck with her legendary retro hairstyle, executed by her long-term hairdresser Wassim Morkos from Salon Pace e Luce.

“Nancy could definitely do better,” Sinno said.

But not everyone was black-clad at this year’s Murex D’Or ceremony.

Lebanese actress Cyrine Abdel-Nour, in a red, highly revealing mermaid gown by Antoine Kareh, and Egyptian diva Shirine Abdel-Wahhab, in a white lace dress from the collection of designer Nicolas Jebran, also turned heads.

Abdel-Wahhab’s bridal look was further accentuated by the nude makeup done by Hala Ajam. She won the award for best Arab singer.

Abdel-Nour, for her part, won the Murex for the best Lebanese actress.

“I think Cyrine wore the most fashionable dress, as it perfectly suits the beautiful body she has,” Sinno said. “Red is the color of this fall-winter season after all.”

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on September 09, 2014, on page 2.

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