Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 5 December 2020

New York Arab-American Comedy Festival 2020: Dubai's own Ali Al Sayed among digital line-up

The event will bring together some of the biggest Arab-American comedians for a weekend of online performances

Emirati comedian Ali Al Sayed will perform at the New York Arab-American Comedy Festival 2020. Courtesy Ali Al Sayed
Emirati comedian Ali Al Sayed will perform at the New York Arab-American Comedy Festival 2020. Courtesy Ali Al Sayed

The New York Arab-American Comedy Festival is going digital this year.

Celebrating its 17th anniversary, the festival will be held across three shows on Friday, November 13, and Saturday, November 14. The event will feature some of the industry's most renowned Arab-American comedians, who will be tuning in from across the US and even live from Dubai.

Aron Kader from Comedy Central’s Axis of Evil special, YouTube sensation GoRemy and Eman El Husseini, who starred in her own comedy special The El-Salomons: Marriage of Convenience, are among the line-up for the first-ever online iteration of the event.

The co-founders of the festival, Maysoon Zayid, who was the first person to perform stand-up in Palestine and Jordan, and Dean Obeidallah of The Dean Obeidallah Show, will also perform.

The UAE’s "king of laughter", Ali Al Sayed, will also be taking part in the festival, tuning in live from Dubai on Saturday, November 14 at 6am local time.

“Our festival is 100 per cent online this year because we want people to laugh but not spread the virus,” Obeidallah said in a statement. “In 2020, comedians are literally being more responsible about Covid-19 than the President of the United States – think about that for a second.”

The festival was founded in 2003 to combat negative images of Arabs in the media and to showcase Arab-American talent in the entertainment industry. The festival has consistently sold out the largest comedy clubs in New York City.

Comedian Maysoon Zayid is co-founder of the New York Arab-American Film Festival. Courtesy Maysoon Zayid
Comedian Maysoon Zayid is co-founder of the New York Arab-American Film Festival. Courtesy Maysoon Zayid

Past performers at the festival include Golden Globe winner Ramy Youssef, star and creator of Hulu’s hit show Ramy, Dave Merheje, who co-stars in Ramy, and Bassem Youssef, who is known as the Jon Stewart of the Middle East.

The festival is hosting three shows over two nights. Tickets are priced at $10 per show and are available online at arabcomedy.com.

Updated: October 26, 2020 03:53 PM

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