Back in 2002 Abdelwahab Hakem, a theatre-mad Algerian, met Philippe Claudel, poetry lover and player of electric bass and guembri (a.k.a. ’sintir’, a percussive Arab three-stringed bass lute), right here in Brussels. Their eagerness to combine their diverse skills and talents quickly led them to stage various productions ranging from shows in which words and music are cleverly interwoven to full-blown musical projects such as Cabaret de l’Ambassade Universelle, Sahara Soul, Les Filles de Hiro-Hito and Kel Assouf.
Fascinated by the writings of Moroccan poet Taha Adnan, they decided to set to music some extracts of his volume of classical Arabic poetry "I hate love". Thus was born the HAMRI project: hamri means ’red earth’ in Arabic but is also the name of Abdelwahab’s native district in the Algerian town of Oran.
’Que nous reste-t-il?’ (What do we have left?) is the title of the artists’ brand new CD.
Image : Rafael Serenellini, Justine vande Walle, Nastasja Saerens
Sound : Cédric Plisnier, Arthur Benedetti
Production : Jacoba Kint, Bee Hugyecz
Technical coordination: Mathieu Alexandre