Whether you’ve seen her in a magazine or in concert, on TV or the web,
Haifa broke through to become one of the most sought after, talked about, and admired star of her generation. Fan or not, dazzled or just curious, here you are back for more!
We’ve all heard stories of an artist’s rise to fame being an arduous uphill battle. Not for Haifa. As fortune would have it, and as all in her entourage have witnessed along the years,
Haifa was born under a lucky star.
She was no different than most young girls who dream of a career under the spotlight and think it unreachable. Nobody had any inkling of her stardom to come. But at only sixteen, Haifa won the title of Miss South Lebanon and a couple of years later even went on to be runner up for MTV’s 1995 Miss Lebanon. Needless to say, armed with her dazzling charm and sensuous beauty, Haifa’s modeling career took of like wild fire. Since then she has appeared in over three hundred magazine covers worldwide.
In early 2000, a close friend encouraged her to try herself at singing. By that time, her amassed popularity encouraged her to take that leap forward and follow up on the advice. Fittingly, her first album “Howa el Zaman” was released in 2002. The album was an immediate success thanks in part to her debut single “Agoul Ahwak”. Neither she nor her entourage expected such an immediate and virulent success. That year, Al Jamhouria elected her Best Arabic Young Female Singer, and she was awarded the Golden Lion in Egypt. By 2005, Haifa had met even higher acclaim, winning the Oscar for best Video Clip for “Baddi Eich”, the Murex d’Or for Best Artist of the Year both in 2005 and 2006, and ” El Wawa”, her follow up single, was voted song of the year in 2006 by Radio Scope and Sawt Al Musika.
Her success as a singer was met by an outbreak of fans. Her concerts were over sold with sometimes record-breaking attendances of over 200,000 people, such as at the Oman Festival in 2006. Fans also warmly welcomed her at highly mediated festivals such as in Carthage and Sousse. In 2005, her fans were delighted to follow her in the acclaimed live pan-Arab reality show “El Wadi” (The Farm), featuring weekly live performances by her.
Her public persona had grown to such international proportions, the media and the press couldn’t get enough of her. CNN, BBC, Rai Uno, Paris Match, People Magazine, Time Out Magazine, Ok Magazine, Alo Magazine, and Vanity Fair, all presented her as a full-fledged international star. Undeniably, Haifa had become the hottest star of the moment.
Hottest in every sense. In 2005 Haifa was nominated Personality of the Year by Elaph website, also Reuters and Lounge Magazine elected her respectively the most beautiful girl and sexiest woman in the Middle East. In 2006, Askmen.com website elected her as one of the most beautiful women in the world, ranking 49th out of a 100 selected, Haifa being the only Arabic female celebrity. That same year, International Beauty also awarded her the title of Most Beautiful Arabic Singer in the World.
International acclaim offered Haifa the opportunity the further her talents and exposure alongside high caliber stars. In 2004, at the Cannes Festival, Haifa accompanied celebrated actor Omar Sherif on the red carpet and was invited to Cannes again in 2005 and 2007. Positive reviews of her “Sexy Lady” duet with Shaggy in Egypt, allowed her, in June 2006, to become the first artist in the Arab world to perform as an opening act introducing international hip-hop superstar 50 Cent for his first concert in Lebanon. That same summer, during the high visibility season of the 2006 world cup, Haifa could be seen with football star Thierry Henri in Pepsi Ads. She is even slated to star alongside actors Billy Zane and Ornella Mutti in an upcoming Hollywood production.
Her non-musical achievements most notably include designing her own line of jewelry, being a spokesperson for Pepsi, as well as a representative of the BBC in an effort to encourage English as a second language in the Middle East. Haifa is also an outspoken advocate of humanitarian causes. To date, she has openly campaigned for the awareness and struggle against breast cancer representing La Roche-Hauffman, as well as being the ambassador of the Red Ribbon association since March 2006. In that capacity, she is known to be a strong advocate of Oprah as winner of the Nobel Prize. In May 2007, Haifa was honored to be the spokesperson for a road-safety billboard campaign, emphasizing the importance of the seatbelt and sponsored by the Lebanese General Security.
It’s clichéd to say Haifa’s career has been a real success story. But not only is it fact, it has only begun. The upcoming months and years are already lined up with great and diverse projects. Fan or not, dazzled or just curious, you will be back for more