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Céline Dion Makes Emotional Plea For Beirut Victims

The singer is working with designer Zuhair Murad in a fundraiser for disaster relief in Lebanon.
Celine Dion performing in Las Vegas. The singer is working with designer Zuhair Murad to raise money for the victims of the explosion in Beirut. 
Celine Dion performing in Las Vegas. The singer is working with designer Zuhair Murad to raise money for the victims of the explosion in Beirut. 

Not even Céline Dion is powerful enough to reverse the horrific events of 2020 — but that won’t stop her from trying.

Dion is working with Lebanese fashion designer Zuhair Murad to raise money for Offre Joie, a volunteer group that’s currently focused on disaster relief for the people affected by last month’s deadly explosion in Beirut. More than 190 people were killed in the blast, with thousands more injured and over 200,000 homes destroyed.

In a photo she posted to Instagram on Saturday, the singer modelled a T-shirt that reads “Rise from the Ashes.” One hundred per cent of the shirt’s proceeds will go to the relief organization, she said.

Dion joins celebrities including Heidi Klum, Sofia Vergara, and Canadian actor Mena Massoud in the campaign, which aims to help “the people of Beirut who have lost so much in the recent devastating tragedy,” Dion wrote.

This isn’t her first time working with Murad, either. She’s worn the designer’s clothing to many events, like the sparkly green gown she wore to the 2017 Grammy Awards.

Celine Dion wearing a Zuhair Murad gown at the 2017 Emmy Awards. 
Celine Dion wearing a Zuhair Murad gown at the 2017 Emmy Awards. 

Dion has personal connections to Lebanon. Her late husband René Angelil was Lebanese on his mother’s side. The official language of Lebanon is Arabic, but most Lebanese people speak French and many also speak English, due to British and French colonialism. Quebec prioritizes immigration from French-speaking areas, which leads many people from Lebanon and the surrounding areas to immigrate there if they choose to come to Canada.

Dion also seems to have a large fan base in Lebanon. Long before the global COVID-19 lockdown, she had announced plans to play a show in Beirut this July, prompting massive excitement as well as the headline “It’s all coming Byblos to me now.” (That’s a reference to her mega-hit “It’s All Coming Back To Me Now,” and to the city’s Byblos Festival, for the uninitiated.) But the show was canceled in January due to the country’s political unrest.

She also wore earrings by a Lebanese designer in promotional photos for last year’s album “Courage.”

“No I’m not crying over queen [Céline] rocking my Phoenician Script earrings in her new album campaign shots, you are,” Beirut-based designer Ralph Masri captioned the photo on Instagram.

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