Lebanese Belly-Dancer Raises Eyebrows after Performing with Israeli Heavy Metal Band
Israeli heavy metal band Orphaned Land performed alongside Lebanese belly dancer Johanna Fakhri at the Hellfest music festival in the western French town of Clisson on Sunday, according to France24.
“Cooperating with belly dancers has become a trademark for the band, which makes a point of using its music to bring Israelis and Arabs closer together,” France24 reported.
But this was the first time the group shared a stage with a Lebanese artist, it added.
“The gesture is far from inconsequential. Lebanon and Israel remain technically at war. The Jewish state is considered an enemy and any dealing with Israelis is considered criminal under Lebanese law” the news agency commented.
Orphaned Land lead singer Kobi Fahri told Israeli website Ynetnews that it was Fakhri who had insisted on bringing the flags onstage, despite his concerns that she would be criticized in her homeland.
Online videos of the performance have sparked a wave of comments, ranging from admiration to shock and anger, noted France24.