Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture), the Emirate’s dedicated entity for culture, arts and heritage, supported the first edition of the ‘Dubai Festival for School Theatre’ in partnership with the Ministry of Education. The event was held on 29th and 30th April at Al Mankhoul Public Library’s theatre in Dubai.

Students at various educational levels from four Dubai schools —  The Millennium School, Al Wasl Girls School, Al Hudaibiah Girls School and Al Athba Girls School — participated in the event, competing for several positions identified by the jury in Dubai. The jury was comprised of distinguished participants including Professor Khalifa Al Takhloufa, Dr. Asmahan Ramy, and Professor Fatima Al Jallaf.

Al Hudaibiah Girls School won first place in the first round, while The Millennium School won first place in the second round. There was a draw between Al Athba Girls School and Al Wasl Girls School for second place.

The aim of the festival was to promote school theatre activities as well as national identity and educational values, and to raise theatrical and artistic awareness among public school students by encouraging them to participate in theatre-related festivals and events. The festival encouraged students to share and learn from each other’s experiences, as well as to improve their teamwork and corporation skills, thereby improving the artistic and visual sensitivity of students and supervisors in school theatres. During the festival, Arabic language teachers were also provided with an excellent opportunity to practice different teaching methods and learn how to deliver information in a simplified manner.

Fatima Al Jallaf, Manager of the Theatre Section at Dubai Culture, said: “Our support of the festival is part of our strategic objectives to discover and nurture talents of all ages and across all fields of theatrical arts. The festival’s aim was to instil children with a love of the theatre from an early age and allow it to grow with them throughout their lives, improving their artistic sense and creative thinking skills. We strive to create and build new generations of talent in the field of performing arts to ensure the continuity of this sector and uphold its legacy. More than 400 students attended the festival and watched the performances, which reflects the high demand for theatre-related activities in Dubai.”

Al Jallaf concluded: “Dubai Culture aims to establish performing arts clubs and specialised teams in all public schools in Dubai. Our main concern now is to strengthen Arabic language skills among students and make the language a part of their daily lives, as well as an ongoing source of pride for them.”

The school theatre takes an academic approach to developing its course materials, ensuring they are adapted to suit the needs of upcoming generations, displayed in a visually appealing format that engages students, and delivered in a simple manner to improve comprehension. The school theatre also teaches Islamic values, customs and traditions, nurturing the national spirit of the UAE community and building trust among talented school students who may play major roles in the future art scene.

Dubai Culture aims to enhance Dubai’s cultural scene and draw attention to the Emirate’s rich heritage with a variety of initiatives taking place throughout the year. The Authority’s mandate is to build bridges of constructive dialogue between different civilisations and cultures through enriching initiatives that benefit the Emirate’s citizens, residents and visitors.


Source: Cicero and Bernay