Even as world headlines from the Middle East focus on upheaval and violence, the region's culture continues to thrive. Here's our look at some groups and individuals making their mark on arts and culture in the region, in no particular order.
Adel Al Mshiti, Libya
As Libyans rebelled against Muammar Gadhafi's decades-long rule last year, Adel Al Mshiti's song, “Sofa Nabqa Huna” (We Will Stay Here), became their soundtrack. The song repeatedly implores staying put, which served as a much-needed morale-booster as Libyans fought for their revolution. It's a strong message from Al Mshiti, who was imprisoned for six years under Gadhafi. A doctor by profession, Al Mshiti told USA Today: "My music is my weapon."
(Photo: by Portia Walker for USA Today)