Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Second edition of Boombox Hip-hop festival in Ramallah

By Ary Gotlib - December 04, 2018
Section: [Main News] [Culture] [IN PICTURES]
Tags: [culture] [festival] [DAM]

On Friday November 30 the second edition of  Boombox - the biggest Palestinian Hip-hop festival - took place at the Grand Park Hotel in Ramallah.

Twelve artists were programmed and 1, 500 people were expected by the organisers, BUZZ company. This festival was an opportunity to gather around music and values of relaxation, but for some it is also a political stand.
According to Mohammed Halman, marketing officer of BUZZ, “Hip-hop has been hidden from Palestine.”
“We want to put it forward.. quickly we want to improve ourselves and gain importance.”  

“Israeli propaganda shows us as terrorists, as dumbasses, as tourists. We need to break this image that they built. We [Palestinian people] are feeling, we are creating, we do love…,” Ahmad Rida*, a 24 year old punter told Palestine Monitor.
Rida also guessed that “tonight, people who feel isolated, like LGBT community, will come more easily.”
Rayane Khatib and Anis Aouad*, a homosexual couple from Nablus asserted; “tonight it is an uncommon occasion to show us as we are. Because here we feel like people are more freed from their judgements.”

To enter the festival, as a symbolic gesture, people were required to fill basic informations for an 'Z Republic’ passport on which it is written: “We seek freedom in various music genres at this alternative Republic with endless borders and dreams.”

A surprise was announced for this evening, the revealed artist was none other than 'first lady of Arabic hip hop,’ Shadia Mansour.
After her performance she declared; “I am here tonight to carry the women’s voices, because we don’t really have the floor [In Palestine]. When we can, in the same time, celebrate music and put forward other values, I must be there!”

People came to this festival for various reasons.
“We are not here in a political sight, we just want to enjoy,” Faiza Ghadi*, 21, told Palestine Monitor.
Ahmad Rida contrasted; “For me it is an act of resistance to be here”. Even if  “it is a little bit superficial,” Thibaud, a Belgian doctoral student from Jerusalem added.

This event, after six hours of performances, was closed by famous DAM Palestine group.
Faiza Ghadi concluded with tired facial features “We want more events like this, here we can breathe!”
* Names changed for privacy.

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