DUBAI: For the first time in history, Arab singers will be performing at the Vatican’s “Concerto di Natale” Christmas concert.
Hussain Al Jassmi will be the first Arab artist to appear at the annual Christmas concert, which is now entering its 26th year.
The singer announced it to his fans on social media, saying he was honored at the invitation.
“With tolerance and peaceful coexistence, we, leaders and citizens, respect Zayed’s ideals. My appearance is to promote interreligious tolerance and equal rights of people,” he tweeted.
“I am honored to meet the invitation of the Vatican to be the first Arab artist to participate in the annual Christmas charity event which results will benefit refugees in Erbil, Iraq and Uganda,” he added.
The United Arab Emirates singer is arguably the most popular singer in the UAE and is one of the top Middle Eastern artists.
He is known as the third judge of The X Factor Arabia season, and serves as the UN Ambassador, Ambassador of Creativity and Ambassador to Arab Culture in the UAE.
In 2016, he became the first citizen of the United Arab Emirates to appear at the Dubai Opera.
He is adept at combining musical genres from traditional Arabic pop, R & B 1990s and even jazz, all of which were presented on his first three albums, and were able to sing in Amiratiya, Egyptian, Moroccan and English dialects.
While performing at the Vatican, Jassmi will join other big names such as Italian pop / soul singer Alessandra Amoroso, American pop star Anastacia, Puerto Rican musician Jose Feliciano and American jazz legend Dee Dee Bridgewater, some of the 15 international artists who will appear.
Last year, Annie Lennox became the main star for the 25th concert.
This year, the concert aims to explain the suffering of refugees.
Funds obtained from ticket sales will be used by charities that provide assistance to refugees in Uganda and Iraq.
The Don Bosco mission in Uganda, which helps resettle those who fled the war in South Sudan, and the Scholas Occurrentes Project in Erbil, which aims to connect university students in Uganda, Italy and students in refugee camps.
The Vatican Christmas Concert has been held every year since 1993, inviting Italian and international artists to appear for free to support charitable activities.
Arab singers along with other international musicians will appear on Saturday 15 December starting at 18.30, at Paul VI Hall at the Vatican.