Lebanon holds Baalbek concert despite virus, economic crisis
Musicians from the Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra perform during a concert in the ancient northeastern city of Baalbek, Lebanon, Sunday, July 5, 2020. Dubbed "an act of cultural resilience," the concert aims to send a message of unity and hope to the world amid the coronavirus pandemic and an unprecedented economic and financial crisis in Lebanon. For the first time since the Baalbek International Festival was launched in 1956, this year's concert is being held without an audience, in line with strict COVID-19 guidelines. Lebanese watching the 55-minute show at home posted nostalgic sentiments on social media about bygone days that have been replaced by an economic crisis and growing poverty and hunger. Lebanon is being shaken by a severe economic and financial crisis, made worse in recent months by the coronavirus and lockdown restrictions.