'Project over': Mashrou' Leila lead singer Hamed Sinno announces Lebanese band's 'split'

'Project over': Mashrou' Leila lead singer Hamed Sinno announces Lebanese band's 'split'
Mashrou' Leila which has been the subject of controversy on many occasions will not create any new music in the foreseeable future, the Lebanese Indie band's lead singer has announced.
2 min read
13 September, 2022
Mashrou' Leila has gained a large fanbase especially among the region's LGBT+ community [Getty]

The lead singer of Mashrou' Leila has said the Lebanese band's members have no plans to work together - an announcement that has shocked their fanbase worldwide.

"Until now, no … nobody's thinking of working together again for now," Hamed Sinno, singer of Mashrou' Leila ("Leila's Project") told the 'Sarde After Dinner' podcast.

They did not explain the reason for the split. On their Instagram page, Sinno posted a story saying: "Super grateful for the deluge of support since last night. I'm not going to respond to DMs and posts, but I want you to know that I see you, and I feel cradled and loved."

The band had been reportedly finding it challenging to continue their music amid a clampdown on the LGBT+ community in the region.

Lead singer Sinno is openly gay, and the band has been banned from performing in a number of Arab countries due to their support for the LGBT+ community, and other issues considered taboo in the region.

Fans expressed their heartbreak over the news about the band, who led an indie music revolution in the region and are known for their support for progressive issues.

The band, founded in 2008, had seven initial members, including Sinno, Haig Papazian, Carl Gerges, Firas Abou Fakher, Andre Chedid, Omaya Malaeb, and Ibrahim Badr.

Since 2016, Mashrou' Leila has faced an effective ban on performing in Jordan, where officials described their music as containing "lyrics that do not comply with the nature of Jordanian society".

In 2019, they were barred from performing at the Byblos International Festival in Lebanon after a Facebook post many of the country’s Christian community deemed blasphemous and offensive.

Maronite leaders were successful in exerting enough pressure on the festival organisers to cancel Mashrou' Leila’s performance.