Culture Summit Abu Dhabi 2019 announces programme of cultural performances

ABU DHABI, 4th April, 2019 (WAM) — The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) has announced details of the performances to take place during the third edition of CultureSummit Abu Dhabi, set to run from 7 to 11 April at Manarat Al Saadiyat in Abu Dhabi.

CultureSummit Abu Dhabi 2019 will present a series of performances by artists, poets, dancers and musicians throughout the event. During the summit, short keynote performances and artistic interventions will introduce the panel sessions, giving attendees pause for thought, reflection and inspiration. Evening performances by award-winning musicians, choreographers and dancers will take place both at Manarat Al Saadiyat and in special off-site venues including the Cultural Foundation and NYU Abu Dhabi.

A varied roster of daytime keynote performances will punctuate CultureSummit’s panel discussions and workshops.. Musical pioneer Xuefei Yang, one of the world’s finest classical guitarists, plays music from both the Western and Chinese classical traditions. Her CultureSummit performance will reflect her ability to marry the Spanish and Chinese repertoires, featuring both flamenco and Chinese folk songs adapted for guitar.

There will also be a performance of Al-Ayyala, the best-known traditional performance in the United Arab Emirates. Usually represented at weddings, national holidays and other celebrations, Al-Ayyala is performed by men and boys who sing and chant, holding thin bamboo canes and moving in unison to a steady drummed rhythm. Deeply embedded in Emirati culture, this UNESCO-inscribed treasure of intangible heritage exemplifies the ethos and gallantry of Bedouin life and reinforces the values of dignity and honour.

The four evening performances will take place both at Manarat Al Saadiyat and at the Cultural Foundation. The opening night of Culture Summit will feature a special welcome concert by musicians from Abu Dhabi’s Bait al Oud playing a musical programme of Arab, classical and jazz.

Lastly, CultureSummit’s programme boasts the Middle Eastern premiere of the contemporary dance performance Portraits In Otherness, choreographed by Farooq Chaudhry co-founder of Akram Khan Company. A specially-curated version of a performance first presented at London’s Sadlers Wells, Portraits in Otherness is part of a wider international collaboration between Akram Khan Company and Peacock Contemporary Dance Company in China.

CultureSummit Abu Dhabi is a unique global platform that brings together leaders in arts, heritage, media, museums, public policy and technology to identify ways in which culture can play a pivotal role in raising awareness of global issues, building cultural bridges and promoting positive change. The event aims to determine an annual cultural agenda that will address the world’s pressing challenges and provide practical solutions.

Under the theme ‘Cultural Responsibility & New Technology’, this year’s programme features panel discussions, performances and interactive workshops crafted in collaboration with five cultural partners representing influential sectors in the fields of media, heritage, arts, museums and technology.

This edition’s theme reflects the urgency of our times, addressing questions of how cultural agents can be more engaged in addressing global challenges, and how creativity and technology may be harnessed for positive change.

CultureSummit 2019’s five partners are The Economist Events, providing expertise in discussing issues related to media, information and its policies; UNESCO, addressing the tangible and intangible role of heritage in societal change; the Royal Academy of Arts, confronting pressing issues from the international art world; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and Foundation, exploring how museums can shape the future of culture; and Google, heading the technology stream to craft discussions related to technology’s impact on arts, culture and media.

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