Hiba Al Kawas

Hiba Al Kawas

 Beirut, Beyrouth, LBN

The Grand Dame of Arabic Opera Singing and Composing
Hiba Al Kawas.

One of the remarkable women in the world of music today. Her rich repertoire, shapes the backbone of her intrinsic concept of Arabic Opera.


The Grand Dame of Arabic Opera Singing and Composing
Hiba Al Kawas

Inspiring Opera Singer, Moving Soprano, Talented Composer, Brilliant Educator, Pioneering Artist, Compassionate person, and Gentle Soul, all words used to describe world renowned Opera Singer and Composer Hiba Al Kawas

One of the remarkable women in the world of music today, is the Lebanese composer and opera singer Hiba Al Kawas: Remarkable for talent, creativity, artistic and intellectual personality.

Hiba embarked on her Musical journey very early. She first played the piano at the tender age of two and a half and composed her first piece at the age of four. She Holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Clinical Psychology, a diploma in Piano studies, and two Cum Laude Master's Degrees one in opera singing under the guidance of Toufic Kerbage, and the other in composition and musicology under the supervision of Walid Gholmieh. Her early studies gave a glimpse into her true potential, her tremendous creative and artistic talent. She was awarded a special scholarship from the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Italy, where she pursued advanced studies in opera singing with Carlo Bergonzi and composition with Franco Donatoni. Since, she has pursued a successful and brilliant musical career.
Hiba Al Kawas composes for symphony, chamber and string orchestra; she also composes for piano and voice and various ensembles. Traditional Arabic instruments were included in her compositions. She incorporates Oriental-Arabic music elements within the overall composition techniques, bridging cultural borders of the continents of music, the Lyrical East and the Symphonic West.
Twenty of her early works were recorded with the Dniepropetrovsk Symphony Orchestra-Ukraine under the direction of Viascheslav Blenov. Ten more recent works were recorded with the Symphony Orchestra Krakow. She has recently recorded numerous works with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine and the National Choir of Kiev conducted by Vladimir Sirenko.
In 2000 she was named Representative of Contemporary Composers of the year by the Krakow Contemporary Composition Festival, when the Krakow Chamber Orchestra played her Aspiration No.1. At another date her Moments in Krakow was given its world premiere by the Krakow Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Wojciech Czepiel. This work reached world fame when it was performed by The Lebanese National Symphony Orchestra, The Cairo Symphony Orchestra and The Qatar Philharmonic Orchestra. Her orchestral work, Pleusis 1, which was premiered in 2000 by the Lebanese National Symphony Orchestra, has also been played by the London Sinfonia, Cairo Symphony Orchestra, Krakow Symphony Orchestra, and Bolshoi State Theatre Symphony Orchestra.

During the Gaudeamus Music Week, the Neuwe Ensemble commissioned and performed her composition Sada Al Akwan, for the Opening of the “Muziekgebau” Amsterdam, in 2005.
The opening ceremony of Tyre Festival in Lebanon and the Al-Medina Festival in Tunis were affected by her performance. In 2006 for the 2nd anniversary of the Dubai International Financial Centre, Hiba Al Kawas performed duets along with the outstanding tenor José Carreras, she also performed songs and intermezzos of her own composition, accompanied by the London Sinfonia Orchestra conducted by David Giménez-Carreras and Brad Cohen.
She dedicated her song O Liban soit sauvé! (on a poem by Nada El Hage) to the memory of Prime Minister Rafic Hariri, and to the President Jacques Chirac who attended her concert at the IMA in Paris 2007.
Her composition, Rou'ia Fi Maa’, “A Vision in Water”, received its premiere at the Opéra Bastille in Paris 2007. This piece was commissioned by the Festival d'Automne for Contemporary Music and performed by the Neuwe Ensemble of Amsterdam. The work comprises five movements of which three movements include bits of vocal intrusions based on Arabic poems by Nada El Hage.
In 2008 a short musical film directed by Camille Mallat: Noor - Lady Light was produced based on her song Asra bi-Qalbi, on a poem by Abdel Aziz Khoja. The screening took place in Beirut in 2008 and at the London International Documentary Film Festival in 2009.
Born in Saida, Lebanon, 17 July 1972, Hiba Al Kawas performed her first concert at the age of six. Thereafter the stream of concerts never stopped; from in Lebanon, to Syria, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Cairo, Tunis, Bahrain, Amman, London, Cairo, Paris, Bologna, Sienna, Stuttgart, Krakow, Kiev, Lisbon, Estoril, and Amsterdam.
The core heart of her career is the establishing of the Arabic Opera from Lebanon to the Arab World and beyond. Her discipline advocates a highly scientific degree, not to be confused with singing opera in Arabic, as she created a new concept of composition for vocal music, since Arabic language embodies other difficulties in style and performance than the habitual Bel Canto and Lieder tradition. She also developed and adapted operatic vocal technique which allow


Li'anni Ahya ( Because I Live)

Written By: Nada El Hage


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Translation: Professor Najwa Nasr

I love you
because I am alive
I dwell a spot in the sky
Yet, covetous of its entirety
I who have lost
the flavor of things
After having concealed my secret from mine self
Yet, its fragrance exhaled
Through my pores
I love you
The skies invoke me to.

Music composed in 2002

Perché sono viva
Composizione musicale e voce: Hiba Al Kawas
Poesia: Nada al Hajj
Traduzione: Valentina Colombo

Ti amo perché sono viva
In un punto del cielo
Aspiro a tutto il cielo
Perché mi è mancato il sapore delle cose
Perché ho celato alla mia essenza il mio segreto e il suo profumo esala fragrante dai miei pori
Ti amo
Perché il cielo mi invita al tuo amore.

Musica composta nel 2002



1- Oughannika Habibi ( I sing you my Love)
2- Lady Light
3- Li'anni Ahya ( Because I Live)
4- Pleusis No.1
5- Aspiration No.1
6- Moments In Krakow

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