The Grand Gala: A Thousand and One Melodies

Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019 | Reception 6 p.m., Dinner 7 p.m.

MGM Grand Detroit
1777 3rd Ave., Detroit, MI


Join the Friends of the Arab American National Museum (AANM) Committee for an enchanting evening at MGM Grand Detroit. The Museum Gala is the signature annual celebration of AANM’s singular role as the first and only museum to tell the Arab American story. 

This exclusive event, which historically funds 30% of AANM’s education programming, salutes the vibrant Arab American community with a fete of unparalleled elegance, featuring excellence in dining and entertainment. 


Emma Lee Aboukasm is an award-winning, Detroit-based recording artist, vocalist, pianist and composer. In 2014, she won the Youth Vocal Jazz Competition in Detroit. As a 2019 graduate of the Jazz & Contemporary Music at the University of Michigan, Emma is on the vanguard of contemporary music in the heart of metro-Detroit. Recently, Aboukasm co-produced her debut album Rise To It (under the alias, Emmalee). She continues to write original compositions and arrange new versions of old songs, offering a new sound to listeners from all walks of life. 

Haitham Shomali is an acclaimed Palestinian singer, songwriter, composer and music arranger. Privy to a musical family, all the instruments in the house helped Shomali excel at his talent. He learned and became proficient at a total of 16 instruments. At the age of 9 his father took him to Egypt and produced an album for him called Markeb Waraa. In 2005, Haitham competed and was chosen to join one of the most famous programs in the Middle East, Superstar (now called Arab Idol). In 2007 Shomali released his first single, Sho Emelte Fee (What Have You Done to Me) and from there his successful career took off. 


Chris Farah, a Southern California native born to Syrian-Lebanese-Palestinian parents, earned her B.A. in Theatre Arts from Loyola Marymount University. In 2014, Farah won Best Cabaret/Variety for Hollywood Fringe 2014 and the Bitter Lemons Trailer Trash Award for her cult character, Fancy. Farah is also a content creator on YouTube and Instagram where she recaps television shows and celebrity stories. In addition to performance and writing credits, Farah sits on several humanitarian boards including UNICEF’s NextGen, LACMA’s Avant-Garde, the Celebrity Foundation for Children, and is on the Diversity Scholarship committee for The Hollywood Fringe Festival as Humanities Director as well as the Encore Committee and Fringe Femmes coordinator for the Los Angeles Females Playwrights Initiative.

Special Thanks to our generous sponsors


Mr. Sharif Hussein & Ms. Pascale Eid



Mr. & Mrs. Ghassan & Manal Saab



Dr. and Mrs. Walid and Rasha Demashkieh

McLaren Port Huron

Intraco Corporation

Troy & Raghad Farah

MJ Diamonds

13624 Michigan Avenue, Dearborn, MI 48126 - Phone (313) 582-AANM (2266) A Project of ACCESS