This year, eight performances are contending for the Sharjah Theatre Days Awards, which will run until March 20 Image Credit: WAM

Sharjah: His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah attended the 32nd edition of Sharjah Theatre Days, which was held at the Cultural Palace.

This year, eight performances are contending for the Sharjah Theatre Days Awards, which will run until March 20. There will be 14 theatrical performances from various associations and theatre groups in the country, including selected performances, as well as broad participation in the programme accompanying the performances by artists and theatre researchers from across the Arab world.

The Ruler of Sharjah bestowed the "Sharjah Award for Arab Theatrical Creativity" to Bahraini artist Mohammed Yassin during the sixteenth edition, and the "Honourable Local Personality Award" on Emirati artist Adil Ibrahim bin Sifan. His Highness also bestowed the "Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi Award for Best Arab Theatrical Production 2022" to the cast of the play "Rahal Al Nahar."

Sheikh Dr. Sultan and the audience were treated to two performances, the first of which focused on the artist Mohammed Yassin's biography, works, and various contributions to Bahraini and Arab theatres, and the second on the artist Adil bin Sifan's biography and his great roles as one of the distinguished Emirati creators in the field of theatrical work.

During the ceremony, the names of the jury members for the thirty-second Sharjah Theatre Days edition were announced, including Dr. Mashhur Mustafa of Lebanon as Chairman of the Committee, Walid Al Zaabi of the UAE, Mohammed Khair Al Rifai of Jordan, and directors Adil Hassan and Rasha Abdil Muni'm of Egypt.

A group of performances were nominated to the competition this year, namely: "Hymn" by the Yas Theatre Group, "The List of the Premature" by the Kalba Theatre Association, "The Executioner" by the Khorfakkan Art Theatre, "The Living Dead" by the Modern Theatre in Sharjah, and "The Song of the Good Man". Dibba Al Hisn Society for Culture, Heritage, and Theatre, "Tafsir Bint Yaqoot" for the Dubai National Theatre, "Miyadir" for the Umm Al Quwain National Theatre, and "Zaghanbut" for the Sharjah National Theatre.

Three performances, namely "Burning a Candle" by the Dibba Al Fujairah Society for Culture, Arts, and Theatre, "Salam Ya Salama" by the Dubai Al Ahly Theatre, and "Madhryb Bani Karsh" by the Ras Al Khaimah Theatre, were selected to be performed on the side-lines of Sharjah Theatre Days.

The 32nd Sharjah Theatre Days programme includes two performances from the ninth session of the Kalba Festival for Short Plays, namely the award-winning work "Miss Julia," directed by Dina Badr, and the work that won the award for best directing, "Failure of a Theatrical Show," directed by Yousif Al-Mughni.

On March 14, an intellectual forum titled "Theatre and the Environment" will be held, with the participation of researchers and playwrights from several Arab countries, including the artist Abdullah Masoud from the UAE, Dr. Mohammed Shiha, Dr. Dina Amin from Egypt, Dr. Fahd Kaghat and Dr. Hasan Yousfi from Morocco, Dr. Ali Mohammed Saeed of Sudan, Tunisian writer and scholar Muhammad Al Mai, and Lebanon's Dr. George Matar.

A number of male and female graduates from Arab theatre colleges and institutes are taking part in the "Sharjah Eleventh Forum for Early Arab Theatre," which honours outstanding performers from theatrical academies and allows them to keep up with Sharjah Theatre Days and become acquainted with the local cultural scene. There will also be a series of talks and training courses. as well as cultural excursions.

The cultural programme accompanying the 32nd edition of Sharjah Theatre Days includes various daytime and evening seminars and dialogues, in which Arab playwrights take part, and their themes are distributed about the reality and impact of acting professionals, and the ways that enable Arab theatrical performances to continue to attract the audience to theatre, as well as the difficulties and challenges that the theatre industry faces,

The 32nd Sharjah Theatre Days edition will conclude on March 20 with the announcement of the award winners, and its finale will see the honouring of the winners of the Sharjah Award for Playwriting, which is dedicated to playwrights in Arab Gulf countries.

The opening ceremony witnessed the presence of Sheikha Nawar bint Ahmed Al Qasimi, Director of the Sharjah Art Foundation, Rashid Ahmed bin Al Shaikh, Chairman of the Sharjah Ruler’s Court, Major General Saif Al Zari Al Shamsi, Commander-in-Chief of the Sharjah Police, Abdullah Mohammed Al Owais, Chairman of the Department of Culture, Mohammed Obaid Al Zaabi, Chairman of the Protocol Department, Dr. Khalid Omar Al Midfa, Chairman of the Sharjah Media City (Shams), and a number of senior officials, artists, intellectuals and theatre lovers.