The world’s best creative minds in live experiential entertainment have joined forces to create what is being dubbed as the biggest and most powerful stage adaptation of One Thousand and One Nights. With heads of Multiple International and Artists in Motion, choreographers associated with recent Cirque du Soleil productions, and top orchestra talents involved, Sharjah has pulled out all stops to create the much-awaited epic, ‘1001 Nights: The Last Chapter’.   

This one-of-its-kind live entertainment production led by Al Majaz Amphitheatre, developed by Multiple International in partnership with 7Fingers and Artists in Motion will raise the curtain on ‘Sharjah World Book Capital 2019’ celebrations, on the evening of April 23 – World Book Day.

Set to inaugurate a year-long cultural celebration to honour this prestigious UNESCO title bestowed on the emirate for its unrivalled cultural attainments, the massive stage production is being brought to life by a crew of 537 theatre artists and acrobats, innovators, technologists and storytellers from 25 nationalities.

The creative and production crews have already crossed the 1,000-hour mark in their preparations, spread across a duration of more than a year.

8-member team pushes the limits of imagination

After giving UAE the ‘Clusters of Light’ operetta in 2014, when Sharjah was named the Islamic Culture Capital by the OIC (Organization of Islamic Cooperation), Philippe Skaff, CEO, Multiple International has returned as creative director of this show. The Laval University graduate started his career with the biggest live show staged in Africa - ‘Africa First’, and has authored two books, The Concrete Republic and Between Day and Night.

The show director’s chair has been occupied by Sébastien Soldevila, multiple award winner and co-founding artistic director of ‘The 7 Fingers’, an artist collective based in Canada. Soldevila’s name and creative expertise are attached to the likes of ‘Festival Mondial Du Cirque De Demain’ (the World Festival of the Circus of Tomorrow) in Paris, and more recently, ‘Crustal’ - Cirque du Soleil’s first circus show on ice. Soldevila also directed The Circus Princess, which has been nominated four times at the Golden Mask Awards in Russia.

At the helm of creative content production is Richard Lindsay, founder of Sydney-based company, Artists in Motion. Lindsay comes to Sharjah with more than 20-years of experience in the field. His inventive spirit and passion for innovation has been a leading influence on highly acclaimed productions such as the 1st European Games Baku 2015, Hong Kong Pulse Light Shows, and Shanghai World Expo 2010.

The 51-piece oriental orchestra that will be creating a live musical background for the artists and performers of ‘1001 Nights: The Last Chapter’, will be led by principal conductor, Harout Fazlian. He is Lebanese Philharmonic Orchestra’s principal conductor and holds a Master’s degree in Symphony and Opera Conducting and a PhD in music.

Maxim Lapage from Canada has teamed up with Fazilan. Responsible for mixing, Lapage will combine classical and electronic styles to create dramatic acoustics for the show. In addition to theatre, Lapage has composed for video games and teenage television. He has two albums, Oncle Bijoux and Ida & Gaspara.

The sound effects are created by sound designer, Mark Vreeken. His recent works includes Cirque Du Soleil’s arena touring show ‘Crystal’, and stadium events like the 2015 Pan American Games’ opening and closing ceremonies.

The Last Chapter’s choreography and thrilling acrobatics are the brainchild of Canadian dancer, choreographer and artistic director, Geneviève Dorion-Coupal. She has choreographed celebrities like Celine Dion, and Cirque du Soleil’s Beatles-inspired show ‘Love’, and Polish edition of the hit television dance show, So You Think You Can Dance.

The stage adventure will be pushed further with expressive, larger-than-life costumes representing panorama of eras and cultures. The creative genius behind The Last Chapter’s costume design is James Lavoie, whose expertise in costume design has been seen in a variety of Cirque du Soleil shows, including their latest, BAZZAR and, for JOYA in Riviera Maya-Mexico, and REFLEKT at Expo 2017 in Kazakhstan.

‘1001 Nights: The Last Chapter’ debuts at 9.00pm on April 23, and will run once daily at Al Majaz Amphitheatre till April 27, 2019.

 

Source: National Network Communications (NNC)