The Shubbak Festival 2013
Shubbak 2013 is a festival of discovery. We are proud to present new talent and new works from some of the most exciting young artists originating from the Arab world – wherever they may be residing – in your neighbourhood in London, in Brussels, or in cities like Beirut, Jerusalem, Cairo, Dubai or Marrakech.
Download the festival guide.
We cannot say precisely when the musical penetration of East and West began, but one thing is certain: composers like Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert and others could not resist the fascination of the Orient. Thus elements of Turkish music, Persian poetry and Arabic storytelling found their way straight to the heart of European culture. —
Islam in European Classical Music
Nadja Kayali is a composer and music journalist living in Vienna. 2010 saw the premiere in Osnabrück of her opera Neda, which was inspired by the medieval Persian poet Nizami, but also makes reference to the Iranian protest movement.
Book Launch at SOAS: These 13 stories of young activists from the MENA region (Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, Jordan, Yemen, Palestine - West bank & Gaza), reveal how young Arab women and men, who come from very diverse backgrounds, regions, continents, share the same passion for their countries, the same audacity of hope for a better tomorrow, the same dream of making their country proud of them. All of the writers who were committed to this project were deeply convinced that one should not ask what their country will do for them, but rather what could they offer their countries. In a world where barriers are constantly being erased, where virtual communication turns the world to a global village, what is this strange bond that ties this Arab youth to politics and public affairs?
Lebanese Victims of Torture
They were abducted and tortured. Now they have taken to the stage: In “The German Chair”, Lebanese survivors of Syrian jails recreate the horrors of the civil war in a play. By Jannis Hagmann
Aleppo, a flood of suffering, how much blood is shed in my country!
I wanted to sing the pain of my country,
With a broken heart I cry for my land and the children who have become strangers in their own country. —
Artists exorcise demons of Syria crisis through art
“That’s the voice we want to hear in the Arab world, not the sound of cannons!” exclaimed Nancy Ajram, a star Arab singer and jury member, as Hamdan’s fellow Syrian competitor Farah broke into tears.
How did Egypt’s creative minds respond to the revolution. We ask six artists, and talk to the founder of In Place of War, a project that champions work born out of conflict.
James Thompson first had the idea for what would become In Place of War when he was working in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, in 2000, during the civil war. Thompson comes from an academic and theatre background and was invited there by Unicef, which had received a request from Jaffna community workers for someone experienced in developing theatre programmes for young people.
For more info on In Place of War, see inplaceofwar.net. There will be a special event on 29 May at the Martin Harris Centre, University of Manchester, at which some of the featured artists will speak; get tickets at inplaceofwarstories.eventbrite.com
WMC’s Women Under Siege is calling on women and men from Syria and those working with Syrian refugees to provide us with reports of Sexualized violence as the crisis unfolds. We are relying on you to help us discover whether rape and sexual assault are widespread - such evidence can be used to aid the international community in grasping the urgency of what is happening in Syria, and can provide the base for potential future prosecutions. Our goal is to make these atrocities visible, and to gather evidence so that one day justice may be served.
We collaborate with epidemiologists at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, as well as multiple Syrian activists and journalists.
The film Sanctity tells the story of Areej, a young, pregnant Saudi widow, who will do anything to protect her unborn child. Kamel not only wrote and directed the film, she also played the leading role. It was shot on location in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and is her second film. Igal Avidan met her in Berlin and asked her about women’s rights and film-making in a country that has no cinemas.
Twelve leading scholars trace Islamic discourse on the performing arts to give insight into genres of pious productions throughout the world.
From “green” pop and “clean” cinema to halal songs, Islamic soaps, Muslim rap, Islamist fantasy serials, and Suficized music, the performing arts have become popular and potent avenues for Islamic piety movements, politically engaged Islamists, Islamic states, and moderate believers to propagate their religio-ethical beliefs. Muslim Rap, Halal Soaps, and Revolutionary Theater is the first book that explores this vital intersection between artistic production and Islamic discourse in the Muslim world.
Edited by Karin van Nieuwkerk
Street Art of the Arab World on YouTube
By ROBERT MACKEY
The Cairene journalist and blogger Soraya Morayef, who has written extensively about the Egyptian revolution’s graffiti, has produced a series of new video reports on street art of the Arab world, as part of a series for MOCAtv, the YouTube channel of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
(Source: The New York Times)
I was not afraid for a moment because I believe what I am doing is necessary, especially in view of the media blackout about many aspects of the revolution. From the outset I figured there are people dying in their homes, and if I were to die in the street or on the front lines, so be it. I faced death when I was hit with shrapnel from a regime artillery shell fired on Sheikh Saeed district in Aleppo on February 7th, 2013. It broke my leg but I am recovered now.
I survived many moments that were fraught with danger while I took photographs on the front lines, and during air strikes, mortar attacks and tank shelling. —
When the Syrian conflict broke out in March 2011, Nour Kelzi, a schoolteacher from Aleppo, had no idea how the war would change her life.
Kelzi, who was 23 when the conflict began, started taking amateur photographs on the front lines with her mobile phone. This eventually led to a job with the international news agency Reuters, and her current status as a well-known chronicler of the Syrian revolution.
Kelzi began her work for Reuters under the pseudonym Zain Karam to protect her family, later reverting to her real name.She spoke to Al-Shorfa about her experience as a war photographer.
Alhoush.com is a new online platform for artists in the Middle East to showcase and sell their work and make a living. Established by Ehab Shanti and Rashid Abdelhamid, Alhoush is an amalgamation of the arts and commerce: designed to help alleviate the job scarcity in the region and a void of modern Arab-inspired art.
Interview with the founders can be read on Arabic Knowledge@Wharton.
The multi-award-winning Finborough Theatre presents the world premiere of Caryl Churchill’s remarkable 1972 play The Hospital At The Time Of The Revolution, playing for a limited run of Sunday and Monday evening and Tuesday matinee performances from Sunday, 31 March 2013
Inspired by the life and work of Frantz Fanon (1925-1961), the Martinique-born psychiatrist, philosopher, revolutionary and writer whose best known works include Black Skin, White Masks and his masterpiece The Wretched of the Earth.
Algeria, 1956 – a country desperately fighting for independence from French colonial rule. Frantz Fanon is head of the psychiatric department of the Blida-Joinville hospital in Algiers, treating both oppressed and oppressor. But who are the real victims?
A civil servant presents his psychologically disturbed daughter to the hospital for assessment and insists on her admittance. An inspector demands treatment for his helpless violence against his own wife and child. Three in-patient revolutionaries are delusional and paranoid. These products of a broken society are beginning to show symptoms, how should they be treated?
The Hospital At The Time Of The Revolution is a forensic insight into the adjustment of morality for the sake of conscience.
A fascinating, groundbreaking look at changing sexual attitudes and behaviour in the Arab world, and their part in 2011’s popular revolts
In the political unrest that has swept across the Arab region in 2011, all eyes have been on the streets and squares erupting in protest. But for the past five years, Shereen El Feki has been looking at upheaval a little closer to home - in the sexual lives of men and women across the Arab world. The result is Sex And The Citadel, an informative, insightful and engaging account of a highly sensitive and still largely secret aspect of Arab society. Sex might seem a strange lens with which to examine change in the Arab world; it is, in fact, a prism with which to refract the region’s complex social spectrum. Sexual attitudes and behaviours are intimately bound up in religion, culture, politics and economics. As such, they are not only a reflection of the conditions that led to the recent uprisings, as well as one of the engines of revolt, but will also be a measure of hard-won reforms in the years to come.