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Omar Khairat (born November 11, 1948) (Arabic: عمر خيرت) is a composer, pianist, founder and conductor of "Omar Khairat's Group".
Born in Cairo, he was raised in a family of musicians. His uncle is Abu Bakr Khairat, the great Egyptian composer and architect, established the Cairo Conservatoire and enriched Arab music with great symphonic pieces. Influenced by this legacy, Omar Khairat discovered new musical dimensions in the emotions and memories of the Egyptian and Arab personality.
He joined the Cairo Conservatoire in 1959, studied piano with Italian Maestro Vincenzo Carro and followed correspondence courses in music theory and composition with the Trinity College in England. Omar Khairat shaped his musical identity as a professional independent composer achieving new musical visions characterized with deepness and richness. His debut performing in film music was The Night of Arresting Fatma in 1983. According to music experts and critics, Omar Khairat's music bridges contemporary Arab music and Western music reflecting genuine maturity.
Khairat understands Arab emotions and music which helps him attract a large audience spanning the Arab region. He has regularly performed at the Cairo Opera House and in various Egyptian and Arab ceremonies during the last fifteen years.
Khairat has composed many successful works such as The Fortune-teller, The Magic Perfumes (1989), and the Arab Rhapsody (1992). He also composed music for international events like the National Feast of Oman 1993, the Inauguration Ceremony of Bibliotheca Alexandrina 1996, Carthage Festival, Tunisia, Operetta El Sheikh Zaid, Emirates 2000, Panorama El Abour "Symphonic Poem", Musical Impact Cairo 1991, Fine Arts Cycle Spain 2004, October Celebrations 2000, Celebration of the Royal Jordan River Institution 2005, Garash Festival 2003, Three Civilizations Celebration in Spain, Celebration of the Centennial Anniversary of the Egyptian Cinema etc.
His repertoire of cinema includes more than fifty works: The Sixth Day, 1984, Am Ahmed Case, The Execution of a Dead Man, A Divorced Woman, The Servant, Elhanna Neighbors, The Terrorist, 1993, Hell under Water, Take Care of Your Mind, Grandchildren Conflict, Sokoot Hansawar, The Ostrich and the Peacock, 2001, Mafia 2002, Girl's Love, 2003, The Embassy in the Building, 2005, The Deer's Blood, 2006 and Mafish Gheir Keda, 2006. His works in television drama music are Ghawayesh, The Miser and Me, Abla Hekmat's Conscience, Moon Face, The Fox, Knight's Age, Escaping to Prison, Afandina's Daughter, Agent 1001, The Salt of the Earth, The Emperor, Matter of Principle, Law in Islam, In Bad and Good Times, Date with Destiny and others.
Khairat also rearranged works of the great composer Mohamed Abdel Wahab like Wahabiat 1 and 2 in addition to songs of Um Kulthoum which achieved great success due to his achievement of developing his own signature style of composing.
Among his many compositions:
- The Group (El Gama3a)
- The Bangles
- The Miser and Me (El Bakheel wa Ana)
- Escape from Prison
- Face of the moon
- This Man (Hatha Al Ragol)
- The Second Meeting (Al Leqa2 Al Thany)
- Spring in the Storm
- Homes Have Secrets (Lel Beyoot Asrar)
- The Preacher (El Da3eya)
- Welad El Am (Cousins)
- The Island (El Gezeera)
- Taimour and shafeeaa
- Assal Eswed (Molasses)
- The 6th Day
- Deer’s blood
- Don't Lose Your Mind (Khaly Balak Men 3a2lak)
- Escape from the Mental Hospital
- The Forbidden Time
- The Hostage (Al Raheena)
- Love Also Dies (El 7ob Aydan Yamoot)
- The Night of Fatima's Arrest (Lelt el Abd 3ala Fatma)
- Places in the Heart (Makan fel Qalb)
- Search for Diana
- Silence, we’re rolling (Sekoot, 7ansawar)
- Slumber in Honey (El Nom fel 3asal)
- The Terrorist (El Erhaby)
- Uncle Ahmed's Case (Adeyet 3am Ahmad)
- Abla Hickmat's Conscience (Dameer Abla Hickmat)
- 100 Years of Cinema
- Al Amarna Hill
- Arabian Rhapsody (Symphonic Work).
- The Sourceress and the Magical Perfumes (Commissioned by Diana Calenti for her dance company).* The Music for The Opening Ceremony of The 11th Pan-Arab Games (performed by the British Symphony Orchestra).
- The Music for The Opening Ceremony of The Asian games in Doha (ASIAD 2006) (performed by the British Symphony Orchestra).
- The Nile (ballet by the Cairo Opera Ballet).
Omar Khairat has won more than 20 awards for his soundtracks in the following movies: Escape from the Khanka (the Egyptian Society for Cinema 1988), The Search for Tout Ankh Amoun (the Egyptian Radio and TV Union 1997), El Noum Fe El Asal (the Egyptian Society for Cinema 1997), The Ostrich and the Peacock (the Tebessa Festival in Algeria 2001), The Ostrich and the Peacock (Alexandria International Cinema Festival 2001), Sokoot Hansawar (the Golden Knight Award from the Egyptian Radio and TV Union 2001, and the Middle East Oscar for best song), Mafia (the Egyptian Cinema Oscar from the Art of Cinema Association 2003), The Embassy in the Building (the Egyptian Cinema Oscar from the Art of Cinema Association 2005), and Agent 1001 in best soundtrack by public voting 2005.
In the year 2008, Omar Khairat won the Middle East Music Award (MEMA), and on April 29, 2010 he was given an award for "best soundtrack" for the film "Welad el Aam" at the Cairo National Film Festival.
He has received Arab and international awards such as the Oman Award 1993, a Certificate of Merit and the Shield of the 7th Cairo International Song Festival 2001, the Emirate Ministry of Media Award 2004, the Royal Jordan River Institution Award 2005, Certificate of Merit and the Shield of the Alexandria International Song Festival 2006, Certificate of Merit and the Shield of the 30th Cairo International Film Festival 2006. And in 2008 he received the Middle East Music Award (MEMA).
CD and DVD releases
- Am Ahmed.
- Arabian Rhapsody.
- Egyptian Overture CD, DVD and VCD.
- Mrs. Hikmat's Conscience.
- Murcia Tres Culturas DVD and VCD.
- The Modern Woman.
- The Second Meeting.
- The Sorceress and The Magical Perfume.
- The Vision.
- Festival or Tolerance.