Otr Elkalam: Saudi Arabia’s Al-Sharif, Iranian Shahmradi win top prizes

Otr Elkalam: Saudi Arabia's Al-Sharif, Iranian Shahmradi win top prizes

Riyadh, The Gulf Observer: A Saudi and an Iranian were the big winners at Friday’s Otr Elkalam contest organized by the General Entertainment Authority.

Mohammed Al-Sharif collected a prize of SR2 million ($533,000) for finishing first in the call to prayer (adhan) category, while Younis Shahmradi topped the recitation category, taking home SR3 million.

The final episode of the televised Qur’an recitation and adhan calling competition which translates to “Perfumed Speech” aired on Friday.

It was dedicated to crowning this year’s winners and opened with a Qur’anic recitation by Yunus Gharbi, the Moroccan contestant who won the competition’s first edition. This was followed by Mohsen Kara, the winner of last year’s Turkish adhan category, performing the call to prayer.

The competition is a winner in its own right, achieving six marks recognized by Guinness World Records, for the largest number of countries and participants in both the Qur’an and adhan categories, and the two biggest prize pools.

The event is among the most popular Ramadan programs in the Kingdom and enjoys a huge following in the Muslim world.

More than 50,000 contestants from 165 countries took part in the qualifying round for the event, which was held in January, of whom 50 went on to the final round that was broadcast on MBC and the Shahid digital platform.

The competition, held this year in partnership with the Muslim World League, is one of the GEA’s major international initiatives. GEA Chairman Turki Al-Sheikh praised all of the contestants and the 20 winners across various categories.