Haifa Wehbe

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Haifa Wehbe
هيفاء وهبي
Haifa in Abu Dhabi.JPG
Background information
Born Mahrouna, Lebanon
Genres Arabic pop, world
Occupation(s) Singer, actress, former model, former beauty queen, beauty icon, humanitarian and philanthropist.
Website http://www.haifawehbe.com

Haifa Wehbe (Arabic: هيفا وهبي or هيفاء وهبي‎‎  Lebanese pronunciation: [ˈhaifa ˈwehbe]) is a Lebanese singer and actress. She has released four studio albums and made her acting debut in the 2008 Pepsi-produced film Sea of Stars. Wehbe is one of the most notable singers in the Arab World and is considered one of the most successful Lebanese singers. In 2006, she was on People Magazine's 50 most beautiful people list.[1]

Early life[edit]

Wehbe was born in Mahrouna,[2][dead link] a small farming town in Lebanon. She was born to Lebanese father Nadim Antar and an Egyptian mother from Cairo, to a Muslim family.[3] Wehbe won the title of Miss South Lebanon at the age of sixteen[4][5] and was a runner-up at the Miss Lebanon competition.[6]


2004–2007: Baddi Aech and television career[edit]

Wehbe released her second studio album Baddi Aech (Arabic: بدي عيش, English: "I Want to Live") in early 2005, which lived up to expectations due to the success of its lead single "Ya Hayat Albi." Released after the assassination of Lebanese politician Rafik Hariri, the title single of the album is about "freedom, considered to be among the most basic of human rights".[7] Her follow-up single became her biggest hit to date, "Aana Haifa" (Arabic: أنا هيفاء, English: "I Am Haifa"), which became her novelty song. In 2006 she released a follow up single "Bus al-Wawa" (Arabic: بوس الواوا, English: "Kiss the booboo"), the song was later used in a Pepsi advertisement. The song was also voted Song of the Year in 2006 by Radio Scope and Sawt Al Musika.[8]

2008–2009: Film career beginnings and Habibi Aana[edit]

Wehbe starred in the Pepsi-produced film Sea of Stars released in early 2008, along with Carole Samaha, Ahmad el Sherif, Wael Kfoury, Brigitte Yaghi, and Ruwaida al-Mahrooqi[9]

On July 4, 2008, Wehbe released her third studio album Habibi Aana (Arabic: حبيبي أنا, English: "My Love") which contains 15 songs including the lead single "Moush Adra Estana". In the Middle East album sales struggled due to Haifa's lack of promotion as she was concentrating more on her acting and film career.

In 2009 Wehbe starred in Dokkan Shehata, an Egyptian drama film.

2010–2012: Babe Haifa, and Malikat Jamal Al Kawn[edit]

After a lengthy delay, Wehbe released a children's album titled Babe Haifa in March 2010 under Rotana Records.[10]

Wehbe was scheduled to work on the Egyptian movie Leilet El-Baby Doll, but canceled due to her overbooked schedule.

In April 2010, Wehbe was featured on French DJ David Vendetta's album Vendetta on the song Yama Layali.[11]

Wehbe was working on her fifth studio album, “Bukra Bafarjeek”. In September 2011 Al Bawaba reported that Wehbe was threatening to leave her label Rotana "for neglecting her and not paying any attention to her work".[12]

"Malikat Jamal Al Kawn" (MJK; English: "Miss Universe") was released on May 8, 2012.

2013–present: Your Face Sounds Familiar and Breathing You In[edit]

During summer 2013, Haifa released her new song "Ghala Ghala".

In 2014, she signed with Tarik Freitekh's label and Wehbe shot her new song 'Farhana' on June 21, 2014 in Your Face Sounds Familiar 2014 (Arabic translation: شكلك مش غريب).

In August 2014, she announced that she will be releasing a new song titled "Breathing You In" along with a video clip featuring Casper Smart. A 34-second teaser of this video was released on YouTube. The video was released on April 14th, 2015. She became the first Lebanese artist to have a premiere on Vevo. The video has collected over six million views as of May 2015.[13]

Personal life[edit]

Some people[who?] claim that Wehbe suffers from parental alienation. In the 1990s, she married her cousin Nasr Fayyad when she was 18 and traveled with him to Nigeria where he worked.[14] During her pregnancy, she returned to Lebanon and separated from Fayyad citing marital problems. She had a daughter whose name is Zeinab Fayyad who also, it is claimed, suffered from parental alienation until she became an adult and continued to refuse to have any contact with her mother, even after getting married to Shaaban Reda Fawaz and having a child. Wehbe's ex-husband and his mother have not allowed Wehbe any contact with Zainab. In some communities in Lebanon, the father gets automatic full custody of the children.[15][16][17] Wehbe has had no contact with her daughter since Zainab was one or two years old. Haifa Wehbe has tried to deny that she has ever had a daughter, but that was rebutted during an infamous interview with Tony Khalifeh.[18]

In 2005, Wehbe announced her engagement to a Saudi businessman Tariq Al-Jaffali. After only a few weeks, she and her fiancé decided to split for personal reasons and family issues.

On June 25, 2007, Wehbe survived an accident while filming a music video for the song "Hasa Ma Bena" in Lebanon. In the video, a single engine airplane was to chase Wehbe as she drove a car. However, the airplane inadvertently hit the car, taking off the front windshield of the convertible she was driving.[19] Despite the severity of the accident, Wehbe suffered only minor cuts and bruises.

Wehbe married Egyptian businessman Abu Husheima on April 24, 2009 in Beirut.[10] Among the guests at the wedding party were singer Anastacia,[20] Kim Kardashian,[21] Diddy, Googoosh, Samar Ibrahim, Nawal Al Zoghbi, Najwa Karam, Ragheb Alama, and Sherine.[10]

It was announced that Wehbe and Abu Husheima had split in November 2012.[22]

Criticism and controversy[edit]

Elissa rivalry[edit]

Haifa is known for her enmity and rivalry with Lebanese singer Elissa. In 2009 Haifa compared the two singers to 'cars' by saying that Elissa is an 'old car' while she is a 'new' one. This statement was highly publicised and talked about in the media and press, causing anger among fans.[23]

Allegations of racism[edit]

In 2009, lyrics in one of Wehbe song's Baba Fein (from her unreleased 2010 kids album) seemed to refer to Nubians as "monkeys". Exact translation: "Where is my teddy bear and the Nubian monkey?".[24][25] Black Egyptians accused the artist of racism and singing a song that fueled racism and discrimination against them.[26] In 2010 a lawsuit filed against Wehbe was dropped.

Another incident occurred after the 2009 Egypt–Algeria World Cup dispute, adding to the diplomatic tension between the two countries. Wehbe went on to make statements that she would not be performing in Algeria anytime soon, because Algerians "...wouldn't understand her music". Algerian officials and many Algerians responded to Wehbe's statements stating she would not be welcome in Algeria anyway.[27] Algeria's cultural minister stated that Wehbe would be banned from performing in Algeria for insulting Algeria and the Algerian people regardless of whether she apologizes.[28]

Wehbe went on to explain her initial comments to Lebanese host Tony Khalife, saying that she didn't mean to offend Algerians or Algeria as a country but was condemning the actions of a few Algerians during the match. She then added saying: "I couldn’t help it but cry when I saw the blood of an Egyptian woman on the stadium!".[29]

Political views[edit]

During the 2006 Israel-Lebanon war, she left her home, in Verdun, Beirut and moved to Egypt for the duration of the conflict.[7] In a concert in the Lebanese town of Jounieh, Wehbe congratulated Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah for his stand against Israel during the war.[30] In a further interview with Reuters, Wehbe stated that Israel attacked Lebanese civilians intentionally while Hezbollah attacked only military targets:

"I believe the whole world knows who started this war and who aggressed on whose land. There isn't a war that starts from nothing and he who begins is the unjust one."[31]

Wehbe also refused to perform at any concert during the 34 days of the war including fundraisers, saying that there were more ways than one to show support for Lebanon.[30]

2007 Lebanon elections and concert in Beirut[edit]

Lebanese newspapers said scores went onstage when Haifa appeared, despite attempts by police to prevent them from reaching the pop star.[32]


Wehbe has natural light brown eyes. However, she is famous for the Waicon Tri-Kolor lenses she has used for her image most of her singing career.[33][34][35]

Wehbe was ranked 8th in the 2006 Edition of the Top 99 Most Desirable Women by the website AskMen.com.[36]

Some in the more conservative Arab countries deem her revealing outfits scandalous. One Bahraini member of parliament called her a sexual singer who spoke with her body, not her voice. Wehbe said she was aware of the efforts to ban her from performing at the concert but had chosen to ignore their attempts to silence her.

"I am a performer and not a politician," Haifa said. "I know my fans want me I am there for them. I am not concerned with the other issues."[37]

In April 2008, the Islamist-dominated parliament of Bahrain passed a motion urging the government to ban Haifa Wehbe's show in the country.[6] As a result of the motion, Wehbe performed in Bahrain with more modest dress, wearing a long green gown with a low V-neckline during the performance.[6]


Studio Albums[edit]


  • "El Layli"
  • "El Tabeea"
  • "Wahashne"
  • "Bint Al Waddi"
  • "Ana Andi Baghbaghan"
  • "Sanarra"
  • "Sway"
  • "Ana Adrra Aich"
  • "Eda Eda"
  • "Mama"
  • "Enta Tanni"
  • "80 Million Ahsass "
  • "Salama"
  • "Beirut"
  • "Yama Layali" (Remix Version)
  • "Yama Layali"
  • "Ya Magnon"
  • "Samanne" (Singles Version)
  • "Farhana" (Your Face Sounds Familiar 2014)

Concert Tours[edit]


  • Kuala Lumpur Malaysia



  • November 18- Al Massa Hotel, Cairo
  • November 17- Movempic Hotel, Beirut, Lebanon
  • July 31 – Movempic Hotel, Beirut, Lebanon
  • July 24 – Chouf, Lebanon
  • July 22 – Batroun, Lebanon
  • July 16–19 – Casablanca, Morocco
  • July 4 – PRIVATE CONCERT, Monaco
  • July 2 – Zahle Festival, Zahle, Lebanon
  • May 8 – Phoenicia Hotel, Beirut
  • March 13 – Houston, Texas



  • Al Wadi – 2005 reality television show based on the French reality show La Ferme Célébrités.
  • Your Face Sounds Familiar – 2014



  • 2002: The "Golden Lion" Award in Egypt.[8]
  • 2004: Best Young Female Arab singer in Egypt.[39]
  • 2005: The Oscar for "ninashnash" for her song Baddi Eesh from her second album.[8]
  • 2005: The "Murex d'Or" award with the title "Best Artist of the Year".[8]
  • 2006: The "Murex d'Or" award with the title "Best Artist of the Year".[8]
  • 2009: The "Murex d'Or" award with title "Most Popular Lebanese Singer"[40]
  • 2010: The "Murex d'Or" award with the title "Best singer actress"
  • 2010: The "ART" Award for her role in her first Egyptian Film "Dokkan Shehata"
  • 2011: World's Most Desirable Woman List No. 49 Rank[41]
  • 2011: Most beautiful Arabian model cum actress list Ranked #2[41]
  • 2011: Murex d'Or best song award, for "Yama Layaly."[42]


  1. ^ Haifa Wehbe. lebanonatlas.com
  2. ^ "Haifa Wehbe". di3aya.com
  3. ^ Haifa Wehbe Biography. yuddy.com
  4. ^ "هيفاء وهبي تثير زوبعة في الخليج". BBC News. May 1, 2008. 
  5. ^ "Lebanese Pop Star Haifa Wehbe Sides With Hezbollah". Nysun.com. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  6. ^ a b c Harrison, Frances (2008-04-30). Lebanese singer causes Gulf storm. BBC.
  7. ^ a b Braude, Joseph. Radar.com. Rock the Casbah
  8. ^ a b c d e "www.haifawehbe.com". Haifa Wehbe. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Tune into talent". Khaleej Times. December 29, 2005. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  10. ^ a b c تسرق الأضواء من هيفاء.. وتجدد لروتانا MBC
  11. ^ "Vendetta album". Fr.7digital. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  12. ^ "Haifa Wahbi threatens to leave 'Rotana'". Al Bawaba. September 25, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011. 
  13. ^ "Haifa Wehbé dévoile le clip d’une nouvelle chanson avec Casper Smart". BelleBeirut. Retrieved November 5, 2014. 
  14. ^ "خبرني: هيفا تتحدث عن ابنتها زينب". khaberni.com
  15. ^ "سيدتي" في منزل إبنة هيفاء وهبي . مجلة سيدتي". sayidaty.net
  16. ^ "Showbiz Arabia: Inside Haifa Wehbe’s divorce". gulfnews.com
  17. ^ صورة عقد قران زينب ابنة هيفاء وهبي تثير الجدل من جديد. masrawy.com. November 21, 2010
  18. ^ "‫هيفاء تبكي على بنتها حزين جدا – YouTube.flv – YouTube". YouTube.
  19. ^ Haifa Wehbe in Serious Car Accident. arabia.msn.com
  20. ^ Arab pop star Haifa Wehbe gets married. AFP via kcrg.com (April 24, 2009)
  21. ^ "Kim Kardashian Arrives in Beirut". BuzzyWorth (Los Angeles). April 23, 2009. 
  22. ^ "Haifa Wehbe separates from her husband". BelleBeirut.com. Retrieved 20 March 2015. 
  23. ^ Elissa: Haifa Wehbe Is The Prettiest On The Scene!. Wikeez.com (January 18, 2010). Retrieved on 2012-12-22.
  24. ^ Shenker, Jack (November 17, 2009). "Nubian fury at 'monkey' lyric of Arab pop star Haifa Wehbe". The Guardian (London). Retrieved May 4, 2010. 
  25. ^ "Singer Haifa Wehbe offends with 'Nubian monkeys' lyric". The Daily Telegraph (London). November 18, 2009. 
  26. ^ Shenker, Jack (November 21, 2009). "Lebanese diva's lyrics hit sour note". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  27. ^ "Haifa Wehbe: Unwelcome in Algeria". The Majlis. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  28. ^ لخضر بن تركي للشروق :مهرجانات الجزائر مستمرة بدونكم.. وهيفاء وهبي لن ترى الجزائر حتى إن تابت. echoroukonline.com (December 17, 2009)
  29. ^ "Haifa Wehbe To Tony Khalife: I Have Nothing Against Algeria!". Wikeez.com. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  30. ^ a b "Hezbollah chief wins unlikely fan in pop diva". 
  31. ^ Raissa (November 6, 2006). "Haifa Congratulates Hassan Nassrallah". Waleg.Com. Retrieved December 23, 2007. 
  32. ^ "Haifa Steals Limelight at Beirut Concert – Naharnet Newsdesk". Naharnet.com. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  33. ^ "فنانات بالعدسات الملوّنة . أنا زهرة". anazahra.com
  34. ^ [1]. alaan.cc
  35. ^ "Celebrities Who Wear Contact Lenses!". missosology.info
  36. ^ Haifa Wehbe. Askmen.com.
  37. ^ "Haifa Covers Up". LB: Yalibnan.com. May 1, 2008. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  38. ^ Hyde, Maggie (April 19, 2014) Head of Egypt's censorship board resigns after dispute over showing bombshell's steamy film. Associated Press
  39. ^ "middle east news information::Haifa Wahbi number one Young Female Arab Singer". Albawaba.com. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  40. ^ "www.waleg.com". waleg.com. June 25, 2009. Retrieved October 20, 2010. 
  41. ^ a b Asian Models Faces Haifa Wehbe Is The Only Arabian Model,Singer Cum Dancer Has Seen In The Italian TV channel Rai Uno. Networkedblogs.com. Retrieved on December 22, 2012.
  42. ^ "Arab stars receive top honors at Murex d’Or Awards". Daily Star (Jounieh). June 25, 2011. Retrieved June 30, 2011. Arab pop superstar Haifa Wehbe won best Arabic song for 'Yama Layaly.' 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]