Andalusia initiative
File image of a previous event held under the Andalusia initiative in the UAE capital Abu Dhabi Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: The ‘Andalusia: History and Civilisation’ Initiative Committee has announced a lineup of art and music events to be held at Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi over the coming months.

These events will serve as a cultural bridge between Arabs and Spaniards, allowing audiences to immerse themselves in Andalusia’s diverse heritage.

The initiative also includes gatherings, symposiums, and events to strengthen the relationship between the UAE and Spain, as well as an art exhibition that will be held at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque.

The initiative is held under the patronage of Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Chairman of the Presidential Court. The initiative aims to highlight Arab civilisation in Andalusia and its values of tolerance and coexistence and to celebrate the legacy of a civilisation that made significant contributions to the advancement of science, culture, literature, and arts.

The initiative also underscores the shared human connections bridging various civilisations and cultures while highlighting the deep-rooted bonds between the UAE and Spain based on long-standing human, cultural, and historical foundations.


Kicking off the programmes on October 8 will be ‘Cordoba Nights’, a symphony orchestra event lasting more than an hour at the Emirates Palace. The evening will feature Spanish Andalusian Symphonies, complemented by Arabic musical compositions. An orchestra of 50 musicians will bring this musical fusion to life under the guidance of Spanish conductor Inma Shara. She is renowned for her international contributions to classical music and has received accolades such as the ‘Spain Brand Honorary Ambassador’ award and the ‘European Excellence Prize’.


On November 12, Emirates Palace will host the ‘Andalusia Stanzas’ titled ‘Ya Zaman al Wasli bil Andalusi’. This event will feature an 80-minute performance by a mixed choir of male and female singers, presenting a selection of the most renowned stanzas pieces. Accompanied by a band comprising 65 vocalists and musicians, the event will be directed by maestro Ghada Harb.


On December 20, Emirates Palace will host a Flamenco Night, an 90-minute show performed by Ana Morales, a flamenco dancer celebrated for her performances worldwide, accompanied by her band of nine dancers, singers, and musicians.

On January 15, 2024, the musical journey continues into the new year with an Arab-Spanish Night-themed ‘Guitar and Oriental Takht’. Internationally acclaimed guitarist Antonio Rey will grace the stage, accompanied by an ensemble of five Spanish guitarists harmonising with seven Arab musicians, playing traditional oriental instruments such as Oud, Qanun, Joza, Tanbur, and Buzuq.

Rey is one of the most famous icons portraying the current flamenco guitar landscape and a recipient of various awards, such as the Latin Grammy, first place at the prestigious ‘Bordon Minero Prize’, and ‘Minas de la Union Murcia award’.

Mohammed Al Murr, chairman of the Initiative Committee, said: “These music programmes are a testament to our efforts to highlight Andalusia’s cultural heritage and showcase its beauty. Abu Dhabi’s commitment to hosting these events is pivotal in establishing the emirate on the global cultural map and introducing new generations to the diverse cultural heritage through this remarkable experience.”