DUBAI The city’s theatre community is in for an unforgettable treat as the world’s largest 10-minute theatre festival, Short+Sweet, gets under way this Thursday.
The festival, which runs until March 2, will stage 55 short plays in English, Arabic and Hindi – all lasting only 10 minutes each – showcasing the works of over 100 UAE-based actors, writers, directors and independent theatre companies.
The festival, now in its 12th year, started in Sydney with Dubai being the sixth country it has travelled to. Every year, Short+Sweet presents more than 500 plays involving over 4,000 theatre professionals.
Festival director Alex Broun said it was an interaction with a group of Dubai-based writers about a year ago and then with theatre professionals from the region that prompted him to bring the fest to the emirate.
“I was keen on bringing the festival to this place, but as we started the process, I was told I may not get as many professionals in this field. But we got much more than what we expected. There were more than 100 entries. The result is a wide range of topics that these professionals have come out with through their plays,” he told XPRESS.
During the festival, the audience will get to watch comedy, drama, community and much more.
“The place has a set of very talented people but, as is in most cases, financials become a constraint in the way of artists and through this festival, they are getting an international platform. So you will get to see plays about local issues, on adapting with different cultures, Arab way of life, among others,” he said.
The plays will also be judged and the winning ones will be presented at the gala final. “Some of the plays by Dubai’s writers could even get a chance to be performed in other countries,” added Broun.
Dana Dajani, an actor, writer and director who is participating in the festival, said: “I have been involved in theatre since my childhood and there are many different theatre groups in Dubai. This is the first time we will get to interact with each other, and that too at such a prestigious platform.”
Dana, who is presenting an Arabic and an English play, said: “A 10-minute play could be very challenging in the sense that it has to be engaging and one needs to convey the message within a short time, but once done, it’s also very satisfying.”
When: February 21 to March 2
Where: Kilachand Studio Theatre, Ductac
Tickets: Dh75, Dh50 (below 18)