Ghalia Benali: Romeo & Leila
Music, literature and love. What more does a person need? Not much, if you ask Ghalia Benali. The Brussels-Tunisian singer and artist will present her book Romeo & Leila, a poetic tale with penetrating drawings and texts in English, French and Arabic. Music lovers will also be delighted: during the presentation, Ghalia Benali will sing Arabic and other songs about possible and impossible loves, accompanied by her musicians friends.
Ghalia Benali, at home on all art markets
If Brussels had to have a voice, chances are that it would be that of Ghalia Benali: richly layered, multicultural and intriguing. The Brussels resident with Tunisian roots has created a sound that is very much her own, with shreds of French chanson, Sufic music and Indian raga, as well as elements of flamenco, jazz and even baroque. In her imaginative tale Romeo & Leila, she displays her great talent as a storyteller and illustrator.
Romeo & Leila
Ghalia Benali sees her illustrated tale Romeo & Leila as an autobiography. The book’s paintings, fairytale texts and poems in a range of languages are about discovering oneself, the fight of love against death, and cultural differences. As in her music, Benali’s graphic art also draws on different traditions. Romeo & Leila contains traces of the medieval illuminated manuscript as well as enchanting Arabic calligraphy.
This evening is the result of a collaboration between Passa Porta and Lagrange Points, a Brussels initiative that highlights the wide diversity of Arabic culture and literature.
Lagrange Points is a collective of students, teachers, musicians, writers and cultural activists from different countries. The group has opened two pop-up bookshops in Brussels already. Passa Porta supports Lagrange Points with advice and joint programmes.