Opening show, ‘The Wise Poet’, Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre 2018 Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) on Saturday officially launched the 12th edition of Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre — taking place from October 6 to 17 — at the Cultural and Scientific Association in Dubai.

Before the official launch, a press conference was held at the association, attended by Dubai Culture representatives including Dr Salah Al Qassim, adviser of Dubai Culture; Fatima Al Jallaf, manager of the theatre section and head of the festival; and Marie Al Halyan, chosen as the ‘Personality of the Year’.

The conference shed light on the festival’s role in promoting the theatre movement in the UAE and highlighted updates of this year’s edition.

During the conference, Al Halyan was announced as ‘Personality of the Year’. He is an actor popular for his dark comedy roles and also an author known as the ‘Ambassador of the UAE Theatre’.

Saeed Al Nabouda, acting director-general of Dubai Culture, said: “Selecting the theme ‘Year of Zayed’ comes in line with the directives of President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan; and His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

“It comes as part of the mission to educate the community about the late Shaikh Zayed’s achievements, encouraging them to live by his values and transfer his teachings to the younger generation that they may be displayed through theatrical performances and events associated with the festival.”

Dubai Culture formed a committee to review theatrical performances by the groups participating in this year’s festival, that evaluated and guided teams to ensure adequacy of content according to festival criteria.

The festival also aims to provide a platform to identify associated talents.