As part of its efforts to create a foundation for theater as well as a theatrical environment that promotes young talents and motivates them to further develop its passion for the performing arts, Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) launched the digital edition of Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre on its YouTube channel to encourage audiences, especially the youth, to participate in the performing arts while committing to staying in their homes during the current extraordinary period.
This initiative supports the Create Together campaign that was launched by Dubai Culture to encourage community members to share creative cultural and artistic content on their social media platforms, in light of the preventive measures taken by the UAE to limit the spread of COVID-19.
Fatma Al-Jallaf, acting director of the performing arts department at Dubai Culture, said: “The Authority seeks to employ modern communication technologies in a targeted and responsible manner and provide opportunities for distinguished local theatrical productions, thereby contributing to enhancing the creative culture of members of society and improving upon performing arts in general.
Al-Jallaf continued: “In light of the inability to organise the Dubai Festival for Youth Theatre on stage this year, and in line with the precautionary measures taken by the competent authorities to preserve the safety of the community, our aim through this initiative is to invest in modern technological means to enhance the role of the theatrical sector in the UAE as well as motivate the youth to embrace this fine art.
We seek to create a sustainable, creative environment for the performing arts and progress upon Emirati theater in a manner that further develop the creative economy and ensure the sustainability of the development process, in line with Dubai Culture’s updated vision to make Dubai a global centre for culture, an incubator for creativity, and a thriving hub for talents.
Dubai Culture opened the festival with a showcasing of the first youth play, ‘Dominoes,’ whose events take place in a fantasy school and draws its idea from the game of the same name. The play highlighted the relation between power and people, and the director resorted to moving the characters as if they were domino stones within the space of a game, consisting of the king, his aides, and a group of individuals from a lower social class.
The play was produced at the seventh edition of Dubai Festival for Youth Theater in 2013 by the Dubai Al Ahli Theatre with material and moral support from the Authority. It was written by Talal Mahmoud and directed by Marwan Abdullah Saleh as well as earned many awards, including Best Theatrical Director, Best Sound and Musical Effects, Best Lighting, and Best Actress in a Primary Role.
Dubai Festival for Youth Theater is organised by Dubai Culture and aims to highlight the creations of theatrical teams in the UAE as well as provide a platform to introduce the talents and capabilities of all those involved in this sector, including actors, directors, authors, decorators, producers, makeup experts, and sound engineers as well as specialists in visual and lighting shows and fashion designers.