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Tag: lebaneseartists

Episode 204: Alma of Slave to Sirens!

Alma Doumani is the bassist for Slave to Sirens, an all-women thrash metal band from Lebanon that gained international attention through the documentary Sirens, which depicts the lives of the band members over three years. Outside of music, Alma is also a photographer and video producer. 

In the episode, Alma talks us through her love for the complexity of metal music, how she got connected to the band, and how the documentary process started with a Facebook message from Rita Baghdadi. She also describes what it was like to have such pivotal moments in her and her bandmates’ lives thoroughly documented, and what that was like to revisit them in the film. We collectively discuss how carefully crafted the film feels, and how it has been challenging depictions of Arab women in international media. Alma also explains her personal decision to relocate to the US and how the band continues to work long-distance. 

Stay tuned for Slave to Sirens’ new EP coming out this summer!

Alma on IG: @alma_doumani
Slave to Sirens on IG: @slavetosirensband

Also!  You can also find the band’s music on Spotify, Deezer, Apple Music, YouTube, Anghami, Soundcloud…
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Episode 177 [in English]: Raed Rafei

Raed Rafei is a Lebanese filmmaker, researcher, and multimedia journalist, currently pursuing a PhD in film and digital media at the University of California, Santa Cruz. It was a joy to have Raed back on the podcast after meeting him at the exhibit Mark for Redaction 3(!) years ago!

We discussed Raed’s academic research on queer Lebanese filmmakers, focusing on perspectives that go beyond frameworks of identity politics and individual rights, and see queer communities at the forefront of broader political change. 

We also talked about his first feature film “The Reconstitution of a Struggle” about the 1974 student occupation of the American University of Beirut, and his docu-fiction approach creates a dialogue between past and present. He also describes one of his current projects exploring his native Tripoli from a queer lens, investigating popular ideas of “the natural,” and identifying the beauty in failure. 

We also discuss transitioning into the arts after more “practical” career plans, being away from home during the pandemic period, and more.

Raed’s feature film (Here I am … Here you are) can be viewed on

To watch Raed’s essay Al-Atlal (The Ruins):
To read Raed’s essay Fragments of Shame and Pride:


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