Arab Today, arab today damascus clubbers dance on in bid to forget war
Last Updated : GMT 22:04:34
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Damascus clubbers dance on in bid to forget war

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Damascus clubbers dance on in bid to forget war

Damascus - AFP

When night falls in Damascus, gaggles of determined revellers still head out on the town seeking to drown out the thunder of outgoing artillery fire with the boom of music. The shells are raining down on suspected rebel positions in suburbs just a few kilometres (miles) away but, while most people lock themselves fearfully in their homes, some head out to try to forget the war on their doorstep. \"I come here for a change of atmosphere,\" says Mohammad, a 25-year-old car salesman, who has clearly had a drink or three. \"There is joy here,\" he says of the nightclub in the upscale Shaalan neighbourhood, where the barman juggles bottles of spirits. \"I want to live, I don\'t want to hear any more bad news.\" On the dance floor, customers shake to a track popular among supporters of President Bashar al-Assad\'s regime. \"Don\'t ask me how or why, it\'s the army that protects us,\" the lyric goes. \"You and I salute General Maher,\" a reference to President Bashar al-Assad\'s brother, who heads the elite army Fourth Division but is in fact a colonel. Among the performers is Mudi al-Arabi, a 22-year-old rapper, who returned to Damascus just two months ago after spending the previous two years living in Morocco. He is determined to keep up a happy-go-lucky lifestyle despite the constant threat of death. \"Everyone\'s going to die some day, but the Syrian people love life and the most important thing is to be happy,\" he said. \"If the United States attacks us, I\'m sure our army will defend us,\" he added. \"Guys come here with their friends or with their girlfriends, to forget the week\'s routine.\" Arabi\'s songs are heavy with nostalgia for the Damascus of before the war when there were regular music festivals Now he performs just once a fortnight at private parties. Since the uprising against Assad\'s rule erupted in March 2011, the authorities have been wary of public gatherings and it has become difficult to get the necessary authorisations. \"It\'s hard to get permission from the security services,\" Arabi said. The nightclub does brisk business despite the war raging outside. \"We stay open until 2:00 am. It\'s going well,\" said 29-year-old manager Bashar. \"But please don\'t mention the club\'s name. I\'m afraid someone might do us harm because they think we shouldn\'t be having fun while people are dying.\" The club is one of a dozen still open in Damascus 30 months into a conflict that has killed more than 100,000 people and reduced some of the capital\'s suburbs to rubble. Where Ahmad, a 22-year-old student, decides to go \"depends on where my friends want to meet. There are even some clubs where the champagne is still flowing\". At one Damascus hotel, some 200 salsa lovers meet up every Thursday -- the start of the Syrian weekend -- to dance together to Cuban rhythms. Yara, 22, drives 25 kilometres (15 miles) twice a week to the Bulgarian cultural centre in the Malki district, where she takes salsa, merengue, cha-cha-cha and tango lessons in preparation for the weekly night out. \"Here, I\'m different, I feel happy. We\'ve all become friends,\" said the young economics graduate. A dozen couples practise on the dance floor, under the watchful gaze of their two teachers. Fadi has a day job with the United Nations, while Mayss is a personal assistant for a telecommunications company director. \"We dance to get rid of our negative energy,\" said 30-year-old Fadi. \"Before the war, the Syrians didn\'t used to be so active. Now, we\'ve understood life is short and that we need to live fully,\" said Mayss, 28. In old Damascus the Baik Bash hotel runs karaoke nights for lovers of traditional Arabic music. While Rasha Tabba sings \"I\'m in such a state\" by Aleppo crooner Sabah Fakhri, her friends belly dance. \"The situation is bad and we come here to get a change of mood. I love singing, and I think I have a good voice,\" said the housewife, donning a white veil as she dances. The club\'s owner, Arwa, is the proud mother of Mohammad Bash, who reached the semi-finals in the regional Star Academy singing competition. \"He loves coming here to sing along with his friends,\" said Arwa.

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today damascus clubbers dance on in bid to forget war Arab Today, arab today damascus clubbers dance on in bid to forget war

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Heart of Turkish Riviera is Alluring Seaside Escape

GMT 11:11 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Heart of Turkish Riviera is Alluring Seaside Escape
Arab Today, arab today 5 Crafty Must-Have Limited-Budget Ideas

GMT 17:03 2017 Saturday ,25 March

5 Crafty Must-Have Limited-Budget Ideas
Arab Today, arab today Hamas leader accuses Israel

GMT 11:43 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Hamas leader accuses Israel
Arab Today, arab today Media host gives priority to problems of people

GMT 07:00 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Media host gives priority to problems of people
View News in Arabic - Culture: رقص
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Disaster costs nearly double to $175bn

GMT 10:42 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Disaster costs nearly double to $175bn
Arab Today, arab today Campaign fights sexual harassment in Egypt

GMT 11:14 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Campaign fights sexual harassment in Egypt
Arab Today, arab today Trump poised to roll back climate protections

GMT 09:28 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Trump poised to roll back climate protections
Arab Today, arab today Prepares to give stargazers an eyeful

GMT 13:38 2017 Monday ,06 March

Prepares to give stargazers an eyeful
Arab Today, arab today Uber grounds self-driving cars

GMT 09:11 2017 Monday ,27 March

Uber grounds self-driving cars
Arab Today, arab today Audi RS 5 Coupe acquires new design

GMT 13:22 2017 Thursday ,23 March

Audi RS 5 Coupe acquires new design
Arab Today, arab today Trump to roll back Obama clean power plan

GMT 11:10 2017 Monday ,27 March

Trump to roll back Obama clean power plan

GMT 09:58 2017 Saturday ,25 March

Nermein Al Fekki films “Foxes in the Valley”

GMT 18:57 2017 Tuesday ,21 March

Accessories designer reveals her new collection

GMT 04:51 2017 Friday ,24 March

Salvage of South Korea's Sewol ferry

GMT 13:26 2017 Friday ,24 February

Expresses Algerian history by woody figures

GMT 09:02 2017 Thursday ,23 March

Laptop ban sparks ire

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 13:21 2017 Tuesday ,28 March

Samsung plans to sell refurbished Galaxy Note 7s

GMT 19:27 2017 Saturday ,11 March

Boualsof launches "Priestess Kahina" collection
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday