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Arab American National Museum Gala: A Thousand and One Melodies

By: | posted on: Nov 16, 2019

Date(s) - 11/16/2019
6:00 pm

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MGM Grand Detroit Ballroom


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The leaves are bursting with color, the air is crisp and we’re getting excited for AANM’s Grand Gala: A Thousand and One Melodies which is less than 2 weeks away!

Join us on November 16 in the heart of one of the country’s most historic cities for an evening of celebration and giving. By attending the Grand Gala, you have the opportunity to support a plethora of educational offerings and cultural arts programming that foster a better understanding and appreciation for Arab and Arab American history, culture and contributions. With your support, AANM continues to build bridges, dispel stereotypes and engage audiences of all ages and backgrounds.

You don’t want to miss this season’s premier event. We have an amazing venue, great food and a top-notch entertainment lineup in store for you. From Detroit Jazz artist Emmalee Aboukasm, to acclaimed Palestinian singer-songwriter Haitham Shomali, to LA-based comedian Chris Farah, the Grand Gala promises an evening to remember! Purchase your tickets toady and join us to celebrate with purpose.  
AANM’s Grand Gala is a much-anticipated annual event, bringing together community and business leaders from across the nation, and even the seas! This year, we are thrilled to welcome our guests of honor, Mr. Naguib Sawiris and Mr. Ricardo Karam.


Naguib Sawiris is an Egyptian investor, developer and eminent businessman, whose Sawiris Foundation for Social Development is a prominent institution of economic and social aid in Egypt.

Ricardo Karam is a Lebanese TV producer, veteran talk-show host and motivational speaker. Mr. Karam is an advocate of promoting Arab achievement and social causes. His nonprofit, Takreem, has awarded Arab accomplishments since 2009. AANM was honored to be a recipient of the 2017 Takreem Cultural Excellence Award. We hope you will join us in receiving our extraordinary guests. 

Emma Lee Aboukasm is an award-winning, Detroit-based recording artist, vocalist, pianist, and composer. In 2014, she won the Youth Vocal Jazz Competition in Detroit. As a 2019 graduate of the Jazz & Contemporary Music at the University of Michigan, Emma is on the vanguard of contemporary music in the heart of metro-Detroit. Recently, Aboukasm co-produced her debut album Rise To It (under the alias, Emmalee). She continues to write original compositions and arrange new versions of old songs, offering a new sound to listeners from all walks of life.


Haitham Shomali is an acclaimed Palestinian singer, songwriter, composer, and music arranger. Privy to a musical family, all the instruments in the house helped Shomali excel at his talent. He learned and became proficient at a total of 16 instruments. At the age of 9 his father took him to Egypt and produced an album for him called Markeb Waraa. In 2005, Haitham competed and was chosen to join one of the most famous programs in the Middle East, Superstar (now called Arab Idol). In 2007 Shomali released his first single, Sho Emelte Fee (What Have You Done to Me) and from there, his successful career took off.

Chris Farah, a Southern California native born to Syrian-Lebanese-Palestinian parents, earned her B.A. in Theatre Arts from Loyola Marymount University. In 2014, Farah won Best Cabaret/Variety for Hollywood Fringe 2014 and the Bitter Lemons Trailer Trash Award for her cult character, Fancy. Farah is also a content creator on YouTube and Instagram where she recaps television shows and celebrity stories. In addition to performance and writing credits, Farah sits on several humanitarian boards including UNICEF’s NextGen, LACMA’s Avant-Garde, the Celebrity Foundation for Children, and is on the Diversity Scholarship committee for The Hollywood Fringe Festival as Humanities Director as well as the Encore Committee and Fringe Femmes coordinator for the Los Angeles Females Playwrights Initiative.






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