The final qualifiers for the international Holy Quran recitation and call to prayer competition witnessed the participation of 3 Moroccan contestants in the Holy Quran recitation category, all of whom have euphonious voices that reached the final qualifiers after passing the preliminary stages in which more than 40,000 contestants from 80 countries participated.
The Moroccan contestant, Abdullah Barkady, who is distinguished by his recitation in the manner of the Imam of the Hassan II Mosque, Sheikh Omar Al-Qazbari, started the recitation round in Otr Elkalam (Scent of Speech) in the first episode of the show dedicated to presenting the recitation and the call to prayer contests between the most beautiful and voices in the world.
The imam of Al-Andalus Mosque in Rabat, Ahmed Al-Khalidi, who is visually impaired, participated in the competition. He is one of the voices that caught the attention of the jury and got the largest share of votes more than once. The round also witnessed the participation of another visually impaired contestant, Younes Gharbi, who memorized the Quran in the mosque in which his father is a reciter.
All the Moroccan contestants in Otr Elkalam show qualified for the quarter-finals. Therefore, they had to compete against each other. Al-Khalidi and Barkady faced each other in a round from which only one contestant could qualify, and Al-Khalidi managed to qualify after winning two-thirds of the jury’s votes whose Moroccan member, Dr. Abdel Rahim Nabulsi, validated the quality of reciting of the two contestants, and their entitlement to the highest ranks, before he nominated Al-Khalidi, in response to the competition system, which stipulates that each member votes for only one contestant.
Younes Gharbi also qualified for the semi-finals of the competition in the recitation category after eliminating the Yemeni contestant Osama Abu Zeid, which made the Moroccan contestants reserve two seats at the semi-final stage of the competition, which is the largest of its kind in the world in terms of prizes, jury and participants.
The Holy Quran recitation and call to prayer competition, which is held in the Saudi capital, Riyadh, is one of the international initiatives of the General Entertainment Authority, which aims to glorify the Holy Quran and the call to prayer and highlight the aesthetics of voices and maqams of readers and muezzins. The competition is shown on Otr Elkalam show at 5 pm on the Saudia channel and Shahid platform.