Every year, thousands of music lovers and stone temple worshipers (not pilots or Rolling Stones, or even “ stoners ”, but the preserved ancient ruins and theaters used as performance venues) attend performances. music and art festivals among the rubble and ruins of ancient civilizations across the Middle East. As the dusty remains of each old town transform into magical backdrops, it is as if particularly inspired artists have been resurrected as Roman gods and goddesses.

The year 2013 could be called ‘one for the ages’, filled with star-studded festivals throughout the year, culminating in peak performances in the summer. As these celebrations of talent end with Nights of the Amman Citadel curtain call last week, we take a look at some of the highlights of classic summer stone venues – from the Roman Sun Temple at Baalbeck to the Roman Theater in Amman.

International, regional and local artists have taken the stage in classic historic venues, bringing ancient and modern tunes to audiences young and old. Jordanian Culture and Arts Festival of Jerash drew a whopping 100,000 spectators during the event.

As the festival season draws to a close, we reflect on how these traditional events have brought to life – with thrilling beats – the ancient auditoriums of the Middle East. Some cities can rock big venues like the Royal Albert Hall or awesome sports stadiums, but here in the Middle East we do it in classic Roman-Greco style – blow up the pillars!

When the ruins come to life – a round-up of music stars taking over the ancient places of the Middle East.



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