In the run up to the eleventh edition of the Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre, Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) – the Emirate’s dedicated entity for culture, arts and heritage – has announced the new festival programme for 2017 and 2018. This year, the programme will be launched afresh with a new series of initiatives, including 10 specialised academic workshops covering various aspects of theatre and supervised by experts from the Higher Institute of Theatrical Arts in Cairo.

During the workshops, which run from July to November, participants will be motivated by a range of new competitions. These include a theatrical composition contest under a ‘Year of Giving’ theme, and a best text award that will see the winner’s work produced during the Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre 2018.

In addition to the workshops launched in 2017, a new and more comprehensive strategy is being developed for the 2018 edition, which will include international theatre performances, field visits for young artists to learn about best theatre practices in other Arab and international countries, and intellectual seminars and forums that will develop the UAE performing arts sector and discuss the challenges faced by young artists and local theatres. Further competitions and awards will also be launched in 2018, when there will be a focus on integrating people with determination into the theatre through training and work experience

Dubai Culture is developing the comprehensive 2018 strategy to support the growing requirements of the performing arts sector in the Emirate of Dubai, the UAE, and the wider region. This year, the Authority will conduct a series of workshops in order to assess the theatre’s contribution to the sector and develop solutions in collaboration with the specialised committees who have supported the festival for the past ten years. The Authority seeks to prepare the next generation of young artists in an academic and practical way, in line with global best practices and according to the outputs of the theoretical and practical workshops hosted this year.

Fatima Al Jallaf, Head of Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre and Acting Events Manager commented: “We are proud of the festival’s achievements which managed to establish its reputation as the ideal platform for ambitious drama enthusiasts in the UAE. In this year format we are focusing in particular on the academic development of the participant’s talents. This is reflected by our programme of workshops and lectures, which are designed to provide a sound education across various aspects of theatrical production. The festival has grown exponentially to become a major event for both the established and budding theatre community in the UAE, with our emerging talent workshop allowing new talents to seek the guidance of specialised theatre artists.”

Dubai Culture is eager to commence the 2017 edition, when it will be focusing on the academic aspect of the festival, expanding the programme to include theatre, film and television arts, and highlighting the role of artists by promoting their work and supporting local talents. With a new vision for the festival, the Authority seeks to enrich and strengthen the diverse cultural and creative fabric of Dubai, where the support and empowerment of the new generation of creators is at the core of all its efforts. The festival also plays an important role in furthering Dubai Culture’s mandate to establish Dubai as a global centre of innovation and a home for happy, creative and empowered people who are proud of their local identity.

The 2017 programme will kick off on 2nd July with ‘Theatrical Script Writing’ workshops, which will continue for seven days alongside other workshops including ‘Voice & Language for Actors & Presenters’ and ‘Theatrical Costumes’. ‘Theatrical Make-Up’ and ‘Theatre Production’ workshops will follow in August, while September will be dedicated to ‘Theatrical Acting’ and ‘Theatre Directing’. In October, participants will have the opportunity to learn about ‘Theatre Décor’, and the last two workshops – ‘Theatrical Lighting’ and ‘Sounds Effects & Music’ – will be hosted in November.

The festival is open to participants aged 15 years or over who have the discipline to commit to the hours of workshops, sufficient talent and desire to participate, and the ability to handle the pressures of intensive psychological and physical training. The Authority also stresses that participants must be able to communicate with others through teamwork, and be willing to follow the work ethic required during the practical and theoretical exercises. Interested participants can apply via the following email address:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dubai Culture is celebrating ten successful years of the festival, which has become a leading platform for nurturing the most promising theatre talents in the UAE and the Gulf region, including directors, theatre writers, actors, technical professionals and experts in clothing, lighting and make-up.

Dubai Culture aims to enhance Dubai’s cultural scene and draw attention to the Emirate’s rich heritage with a variety of initiatives that take 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.

 

About Dubai Culture & Arts Authority:

The Dubai Culture & Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) was launched on March 8, 2008 by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, in order to drive the growth of the city’s artistic and cultural landscape. The Authority has grown to play a major role in the realization of the Dubai Plan 2021, to highlight Dubai as a thriving capital for creative industries and further embed the Emirate’s credentials as a city of happy, creative and empowered people.

As part of its mandate, Dubai Culture has several initiatives that are focused on strengthening both the historic and modern cultural fabric of Dubai, including Dubai Art Season - the city’s premier umbrella arts initiative which kicks off with Emirates Airline Festival of Literature and encompasses Art Week including Art Dubai, Design Days Dubai, and SIKKA Art Fair, Middle East Film & Comic Con, SIKKA Art Fair - an annual event aimed at promoting Emirati and local artists in the UAE and the wider GCC region, Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre - an annual festival that fosters the art of theatre in the UAE and that is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2016, and Dubai Next - a dynamic platform that aims to showcase the Emirate’s cultural ethos and its vibrant creative scene on the global stage.

The Authority’s other key initiatives include Creatopia (www.creatopia.ae) - the nation’s first government empowered virtual community that guides and nurtures the creative culture of the nation and provides a platform of information and opportunities that lead to exposure and personal growth.

Dubai Culture also plays a leading role in support of the UAE National Strategy for Reading 2026, in particular by undertaking a major refurbishment of all Dubai Public Libraries branches to transform them into state-of-art cultural and artistic hubs. Across all of its branches, Dubai Public Library also provides children and young adults with a range of educational and entertaining activities that encourage the use of its facilities. The ‘Our Summer is Filled with Culture & Arts Programme’ is a Dubai Public Library initiative which complements the UAE National Reading Strategy, with its activities open to all age groups, and which revolve around four key themes: happiness, reading, family and the future.

The Authority also manages more than 17 heritage sites across the Emirate, and is a key government stakeholder in the development of the Dubai Historical District. As the custodian Authority of Dubai’s museum sector, Dubai Culture will officially launch Etihad Museum and in December 2016. The museum will provide platform to encourage cultural exchange and to connect Emirati youth with their culture and history. As part of the Authority mandate to support Dubai’s vision of becoming the focal point of diverse cultural exchange (regionally & globally), the museums will play a catalyst role in preserving Emirati Heritage.

 

Source: Cicero and Bernay