Lara Scandar Has A Beautiful Voice And…
When she was a runner-up in Star Academy 6 back in 2009, Lara Scandar was just 19 years old. Since then, the Egyptian pop singer has been honing her craft and, at the same time, growing into a fine woman, which is why she scooped the Woman We Love gong at our Man at His Best Awards last month. And she was nice enough to return the favour, sharing her loves with Esquire.
My exotic background. My mum’s Lebanese and my dad’s half Italian and half Egyptian, so I’m a mixed bag, I guess.
Singing. It’s always been around me; my dad loves to sing and so does my grandfather. There’s even a video of me in hospital just after I was born, with my mum and my dad lying next to me just singing to me. So you could say I’ve grown up around music.
My music teacher at school. She was the one who persuaded me to do a solo when I was 11 years old. I immediately loved the feeling of being on stage and knew then that I wanted to be a singer.
Mika. He was the first concert I ever went to see. I was so amazed at his performance and you could tell that for him
it wasn’t repetition. He was really giving his all, and that day I went home to my sister and a friend and I told them, “This is it.”
That I lost in Star Academy 6. Don’t get me wrong, it was an amazing experience but I always used to say on reality shows, there’s a curse on the winners. When someone wins a reality show, it basically shows that they got the votes from the public and they sort of stop there. They are like, “that’s enough.” But when you don’t win, you always prove yourself a bit more to people and I think that’s the beauty of it, because that’s the challenge.
Being a good role model. If I were a teen and the pop stars today were my supposed role models, I would probably crawl into a hole and die. My fanbase is young girls, and what I like is they don’t have that many people to look up to. They look up to singers who are on the other side of the world, basically, so I like that. Setting a good example is really important.
Living in Cairo. I wanted to start off my career in my region and so far I think I have created a base for myself. I wanted to stay in my region because I felt like I wanted to do something different there and maybe in the future. I mean, realistically, I don’t sing that much in Arabic and maybe in the future I’ll think about moving, but for now I love being based in Cairo.
Beirut. My record label is based in Beirut so I’m there a lot; last month I was there four times. My tip for eating out there? Go to Enab for the best Lebanese food — I’m obsessed with the food there.
Penguins. I think they are adorable. I know this sounds really cheesy and really cliché, but I really love the fact that they are known for mating for life. Swans too. But I think they are too cliché. I think they are too pretty; I don’t like them. Also, if a male penguin gets a pebble and puts it at the feet of a female penguin, and she picks it up, she is his for life. If she leaves it, he has to go and find another. When we humans can’t even stay still for a second. Men are too lame to do something for a second. So, like, I think we should date penguins.
Late morning. I’m not an early riser, but I don’t go out and stay out late, so late morning if my favourite time of the day, when the rest of my day is ahead of me.
Aladdin. My first favourite song was “A Whole New World” from Aladdin. Weirdly enough, my dad took me to the studio when I was about three years old, we recorded it together and that’s why I love that song.
Country music. I’m a huge country fan. I have a lot of favourites. I love Brad Paisley, Luke Bryan, Chris Young, Tim McGraw, of course and Keith Urban.
Eating. I literally eat everything. There’s nothing I don’t like. I can’t even choose a favourite food or cuisine; my answer will always be “everything” is my favourite.
Ian Somerhalder. [Lost and Vampire Diaries actor] I adore him. I think he is the most… I think God created him to make women angry because they can’t have him.
Talking. I talk a lot. I never know when to shut up. No, seriously. I scare people if I don’t know when to shut up. It’s true though — I can be sitting with people and I won’t know when to shut up.
Pugs. They’re the cutest in the dog world.