22nd – 28th Oct 2012

What's On This Week...

What's On

22nd Oct 2012

Souk (1)

Written by

Another busy week to get stuck into Middle Eastern culture in the nation’s capital. The Nour Festival of Arts continues, while other highlights include concerts, exhibitions and the new play, Qudz, which is certainly not to be missed. Have a great week!


Monday 22nd October

Nour Festival of Arts - Various locations around London

The Festival, back for a third time this year in a bigger and better guise, continues this week. Running until the end of December, it will feature dazzling contemporary artistic talent from the Middle East and North Africa. Including everything from c contemporary art, design, film, music and literature, it’s sure to be one of the Middle Eastern cultural events of the year!

There is far too much going on to list here. However, among the brilliant events scheduled for this year’s edition, the Festival has noted a number of highlights which are expected to stand out in particular. For one, the festival’s Writer-in-Residence, Selma Debbagh, will host a series of workshops on writing and publishing. Additionally, Tunisian singer-songwriter Emel Mathlouthi and Lebanese musician Charbel Rouhana will play a series of concerts at the Tabernacle, and festival goers can view a graphic and spatial design exhibition by Muiz Anwar and Dia Batal at the Leighton House Museum, as well as Moroccan artist Abderrahim Yamou’s first-ever UK exhibition at the Mosaic Rooms. Furthermore, the V&A Museum will host a group photography exhibition entitled Light from the Middle East, and in association with the London MENA Film Festival, screenings of films from emerging Middle Eastern and North African filmmakers will be shown at the Leighton House Museum.

You can check out their website here or can download the whole programme here


Beautiful ResistanceSOAS, London

A special talk presented by the director of Alrowwad Cultural and Theatre Society, Abdelfattah Abusrour.

Al-Rowwad was founded in Aida refugee camp, Bethlehem in 1998 to help give children the means of self-expression and resilience to counter the harsh realities of military occupation. Today it is a place where community members, especially young people and women, have a platform to tell their stories, get involved in dance, music, photography and theatre workshops, engage with their peers, learn new skills, and build self-esteem and confidence.

The talk will explain how Al-Rowwad has empowered young Palestinians on educational and artistic levels to resist the occupation through non-violent means and creativity.

For details, see here


Tuesday 23rd October

Youssef Hbeisch & Ahmad Al Khatib in Concert with John WilliamsCadogan Hall, London

The Mosaic Rooms is hosting a concert by the Duo Sabîl (Ahmad Al Khatib, composition and oud, Youssef Hbeisch, percussions) with one of the most famous classical guitarists John Williams in support of the Gaza Music School and the Beit Almusica (Shafa’amr) programme.

During the concert, the Duo will perform its own acclaimed repertoire. The two Palestinian musicians will then present John Williams who will perform pieces from his incredible range, before joining the Duo in what promises to be a spectacular joint performance to end the evening.

For more information, see here


Beautiful ResistanceKingston University, London

Another chance to see this special talk, this time with special guest Harry Fear, a documentary maker and activist, who will be sharing his recent experiences in Gaza.

For details, see here


Wednesday 24th October

Made in Makkah® - Artspace Gallery, London

In collaboration with the Jeddah-based Athr Gallery and curated by Raneem Farsi and Aya Alireza, Made in Makkah® will show the works of three Saudi artists from the Holy City of Makkah: Nasser Al-Salem, Noha Al-Sharif, and Saddek Wasil.

Through mixed media, calligraphy and sculpture, Made in Makkah® demonstrates how being born and raised in this spiritual magnet has shaped the artists’ worldviews and how the devotional nature of their work can appeal to a universal spirit of belief.

Made in Makkah® opens a window into the elusive world of Islam. However, the true message conveyed by these three artists is much more universal – a belief in something greater than oneself. The exhibition will run until October 27th.

For more details, click here


Thursday 25th October

In Ramallah, RunningThe Mosaic Rooms, London

To celebrate the recent launch of In Ramallah, Running The Mosaic Rooms will present a discussion lead by the author Guy Mannes-Abbott.

The book is a uniquely personal encounter with Palestine, interweaving short, poetic texts with exploratory essays. International artists and prominent writers have been invited to respond both directly and indirectly to the texts with newly commissioned works.

Guy will be joined by special guests, writer Jean Fisher and artist Jananne al-Ani who will discuss and explore further the issues, thoughts and experiences raised through the book. He will also give a short reading from the book. Panel details will be announced shortly.

For more details, see here


The Dash Cafe: An Arab Spring?The Flyover, London

A lively panel of journalists, academics, artists and activists with first-hand experience from the region, will debate how the media has shaped our ideas of the “Arab Spring”. The panel includes Dr Fatima El-Issawi, LSE journalist, analyst, and Research Fellow whose current project looks at transformations in the Arab media industry within the current uprisings; Vanessa Hogkinson, a visual artist whose work engages in dialogue with Islamic art and culture; and Dr Anne Alexander, Cambridge University research fellow who studies the use of digital media by movements for political and social change. It is chaired by Turi Munthe, founder of citizen journalism website Demotix.

DJ U-Cef And The Arab League will brew an excellent brew of traditional Maghrebi music fused with dub, jazz and fresh urban beats that will transport you from West London deep into the heart of the Sahara. Born and raised in Rabat, U-cef (aka Moulay Youssef Adel) absorbed much of his native Morocco’s traditions before moving to New York and then to London. His first CD ‘Halalium’ was a milestone in Moroccan urban dance music, and inspired a whole generation of rappers, b-boys and pro-tools adventurers, from Tangiers to Taroudant and Melilla to Marrakech. Part of the Nour Festival of Arts.

For more information, see here


Friday 26th October

QudzThe Yard Theatre, London

Saddam promised Unity… and delivered Collapse.

Bush promised Freedom… and delivered Chaos.

For a young Iraqi soldier, sent on an epic journey down the Tigris, all he has to deliver is Qudz – an enigmatic Cleric – who promises to hold the answer to all the country’s problems.

Merging Conrad’s Heart of Darkness with astonishing first-hand accounts, Qudz brings us up close and personal to the everyday lives of Iraqis: sometimes comic, often tragic and always absurd.

Blending drama, live music, film, animation and dance, Qudz captures the particular lunacy of living in a warzone. This moving play, by Tarek Iskander, will be showing until 3rd November.

For more details, see here


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