Mahmovies! at thejamjar: Sita Sings the Blues and Camp Ka Champ

The third week of Mahmovies! Music for the Eyes will be very special. A delightful animated musical and a live performance by an unknown but talented group of competition winners from a singing competition called Western Union Camp Ka Champ (Champ of the Camp) held at the various Dubai labour camps. You must not miss this one, it will break down a lot of barriers.

Sita Sings the Blues (Nina Paley, 2008)
Duration: 82 minutes 

Sita is a goddess separated from her beloved Lord and husband Rama. Nina is an animator whose husband moves to India, then dumps her by email. Three hilarious shadow puppets narrate both ancient tragedy and modern comedy in this beautifully animated interpretation of the Indian epic Ramayana. Set to the 1920's jazz vocals of Annette Hanshaw, Sita Sings the Blues earns its tagline as "the Greatest Break-Up Story Ever Told."

Camp Ka Champ Concert

A collection of winners from the past three years of the Western Union Camp Ka Champ (Champ of the Camp) singing competition will perform in their first ever public concert. This concert will bring to the forefront a population in Dubai that is often overlooked, and allows these talented performers the chance to shine.

The Western Union Camp Ka Champ contest is an acclaimed singing competition that takes place annually across Dubai’s labour camps.  Hundreds of labourers show up for rounds of auditions, much like in hit shows like The X Factor, and contestants are gradually narrowed down to the most talented singers. The competition is based on the Indian musical game Antakshari (similar to karaoke), which is often played at weddings and celebrations.

I had no idea about this music competition and so happy and thankful that Mahmoud Kaabour is bringing this to us. By giving these laborer-crooners a platform, the music of the camps will get its first ever public performance along with a live orchestra, creating a rare point of interaction between the Dubai labour community and the Mahmovies! audience. I hope this opens up the opportunity for more public events like this that we can attend and enjoy.


Mahmovies! is a free event and seating will be on a first come first serve basis, starting at 7.30pm on 15th February at thejamjar. Location map:

Other links:
@Mahmovies on Twitter
Mahmovies Facebook Group
@thejamjar on Twitter