Sharjah: Stunning theatrical show to portray power of arts and culture in Emirate's progress

Eleven symbolic scenes to narrate a story using a range of performing arts expressions


A Staff Reporter

Published: Wed 26 Jan 2022, 6:00 PM

A new show in Sharjah colourfully portrays the power of books and knowledge and its legacy in the emirate.

Organised by Sharjah Government Media Bureau (SGMB), 'Narratives of the Place' (Sard Al Makan) blends a range of performing arts expressions with state-of-the-art audio-visual technologies to vividly portray the role of knowledge and literature in shaping Sharjah's epic journey of growth since the accession of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah.

The show that continues its run at Al Majaz Amphitheatre on January 28 and 29, features 11 symbolic scenes that narrate and paint the intriguing story of a ruler who pledged a golden dagger, as a 12-year-old boy to buy books, and captures details of the impressive strides in culture and arts in the emirate under his 50-year leadership.

The breathtaking choreography combined with exquisite music and poetry elevate each scene, one of which includes the inspiring words of Ruler of Sharjah spoken during the opening ceremony of Sharjah World Book Capital 2019 celebrations: "We worked sincerely for many years to cultivate a relationship in Sharjah between books and knowledge. As I stand here before you… I see our grandfathers' grandfathers who were scientists and intellectuals working hard to fill libraries with the knowledge of humanities and sciences and light the way for mankind to progress … and leave us with the legacy that we are proud of today."

"It is time to stop the 'concrete' revolution of civil construction in the country and replace it with a 'cultural revolution' instead," he had said, while announcing the cultural and development vision for the emirate at a theatrical event on April 18, 1979. 'Narratives of the Place' showcases this vision through a timeline of milestones marking the development of the emirate over the past 50 years.

Instilling the values of culture and efforts to conserve cultural heritage, promote artistic talents and engage in cross-cultural collaborations were realised through the establishment of several cultural institutions in Sharjah. The date, April 30, 1981, marked the setting up of the Department of Culture and Information which has since paved the way for the formation of the Sharjah Art Foundation, Sharjah Book Authority, Sharjah Publishing City Free Zone, Sharjah Sports Council, Sharjah Institute for Heritage, Sharjah Government Media Bureau, and many more.


Vibrant art and cultural events

The Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF), which celebrated its milestone 40th edition last year as the largest book fair in the world in terms of buying and selling of copyrights, began its extraordinary journey on January 18, 1982. The same day, the Sharjah Ruler also opened 'The Fine Art Gallery', that exhibited the works of artists from the Emirates Fine Arts Society.

On March 14, 1999, the University of Sharjah, came into being, and the Sharjah Ruler said: "Today, we are inaugurating a lofty edifice of knowledge as we advance towards a new century. This leading centre of scientific and intellectual creativity will secure for us a future worthy of the glories of our past and the achievements of our present."

On April 26, 2015, he inaugurated Al Qasimia University, which today offers full scholarships to students from around the world, in addition to focusing on Arab and Islamic sciences.

As 'Narratives of the Place' leads viewers on Sharjah's cultural journey, it weaves the past with the present, and highlights the emirate's commendable stature at the global level. The golden dagger pledged by the Sharjah Ruler decades ago has thus served its purpose and transformed the emirate into a beacon of knowledge and as a destination for all those yearning to quench their thirst for science, culture, and literature

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