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Sharjah’s Al Noor Island is set to host the third annual edition of the International Storytelling Festival in the UAE — Tales on the Island.

The event, which will run across four weekends and feature 15 international storytellers, will run from February 21 until March 16, across Fridays and Saturdays for the public and for school field trips and group bookings over the weekdays.

This year’s theme is called ‘Stories: A Treasure of Words’, which will feature live oral traditions, performances and musicians across 10 different nationalities.

Stories narrated will highlight folklore from the UAE, India, Egypt, Palestine, among other nations.

“The festival will be a joyful celebration of the oral tradition and aims to highlight its role in being one of the most important intangible assets of humankind’s collective cultural heritage,” said Mahmoud Rashid Al Suwaidi, general manager of Al Noor Island, in a statement.

“As Sharjah is on its way to revealing itself as the Unesco World Book Capital 2019 this April, this international storytelling festival will be an excellent prelude to the grand 365-day cultural celebration the emirate has planned to showcase to the UAE and the world,” he added.

Paola Balbi and Davide Bardi will serve as the festival’s artistic directors.

Visitors to Al Noor Island will also be introduced to the ancient art of Hakawati storytelling through a series of specialised workshops delivered by professional artists and performers, which will be presented in Arabic and English.

Full details and schedule on the Al Noor Island website.