Bahrain Spring of Culture
The eighth incarnation of Spring of Culture is finally upon us Discuss this article
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There’s a huge range of events running right through March and into April from dance performances and music to art exhibitions, talks and workshops at venues across the island from Arad Fort to the National Museum and, of course, the newly opened National Theatre, which is expected to really come into its own this month.
We’ve got the lowdown on all the best happenings.
Music - Il Divo
Bahrain National Theatre
Nominated as Artist of the Decade at the Classical Brits, these four pop opera singers have been one of the most successful musical break-out stories of the millennium so far. They’ve sold more than 25 million albums and their success has pioneered a whole new sound for vocal music garnering them more than 150 gold and platinum awards. They’re the big opening show for this year’s festival really putting the new National Theatre on the map.
Exhibition - Within the Shadows, Ghada Khunji
Bin Matar House, Muharraq
Based in New York, Lucie-award winning photographer Ghada Khunji returns to her homeland Bahrain to capture its unique light and beautiful shadows through architecture, people and landscape. Despite the advent of the computer age and western style modernisation, Khunji’s imagery manages to unveil remnants of Bahrain’s true soul revealing a sense of nostalgia for Bahrain’s past and its many layers of civilisation.
Exhibition - Himat Mohammed Ali
Al Riwaq Art Space, Adliya
Al Riwaq Art Space presents Letters to Ishtar an invitation by the artist Himat Mohammed Ali to seven international poets, that began in 2003, to travel into the myth of Ishtar, the Goddess of Love and War. The result conveys a complex and intimate vision of each poet, which Himat translates into artworks combining painting, sculpture and poetry making the most of this stunning display space.
Lecture (Arabic) - Changes in Arab Cinema and Television, Ibrahim Al Arees
Shaikh Ebrahim Centre for Culture and Research, 8pm
Ibrahim Al Arees, a researcher in cultural history, a journalist and film critic, studied film directing in Rome along with scenario and film critique in London. Heading the film department in Al Hayat Newspaper, he writes a daily column on human heritage and history of world culture. He has translated 40 books from French, English and Italian cinema, philosophy, economics, criticism and history and he is the author of the film A Journey in Arab Cinema, directed by Martin Scorsese.
Poetry evening - Letters to Ishtar
Al Riwaq Art Space, Adliya, 7pm
In conjunction with the exhibition by Himat Mohammed Ali this evening is a dialogue between poetry and painting, a joint artistic project by seven poets: Adonis, Qassim Haddad, Mohammed Bennis, Saadi Yousif, Abdulmunim Ramadhan, Bernard Noël, Michel Butor and the artist Himat Mohammed Ali.
Music - Sonata for Love, Jahida Wehbe
Cultural Hall, 8pm
World premier of Jahida's self-produced new album Sonata for Love on which she sings for famous poets Pablo Neruda, Mahmoud Darwish, Adonis, Talal Haidar, Forough Farrokhzad and others. With her deep and powerful voice, she will present the album accompanied by a sextet conducted by the famous qanun player Osama Abdulrasol, who supervised the production and co-arranged the album with Dyck Van der Herst and Philippe Thuriot.
Theatre - Erth's Dinosaur Petting Zoo
Adjacent to Bahrain Fort Museum, Qal’at Al Bahrain Avenu. Daily 4pm and 10.30am on Mar 8, 9 and 15. No show Mar 12.
The dinosaurs are here! Dare you get close? All the way from Australia comes an awesome show featuring prehistoric creatures from cute baby dinos to tooth-gnashing giants that live in a petting zoo like no other. These life-like dinosaur creations come to life in an eye-popping display filled with fun, education and imagination. Seize the opportunity to feed, water and care for these prehistoric marvels.
Poetry - Ahmed Abdel Muti Hijazi
Shaikh Ebrahim Centre for Culture and Research, 8pm
Poet and critic, Ahmed Abdel Muti Hijazi has participated in literary conferences across the Arab sphere. A pioneer in the evolution of contemporary Arabic poetry, his works have been translated into French, English, Russian, Spanish, Italian and German. He was awarded the Egyptian Greek Cavafy in 1989, African Poetry Award in 1996 and the State Merit Award in Arts from the Supreme Council of Culture in Egypt.
Theatre - Sneezing Firas, khayal Art and Education
Cultural Hall, 5pm
Through puppetry, acting, shadow theatre and video, this play addresses problems in children’s relations with their schoolmates, parents and teachers. Relying on simplicity, it stimulates their imagination and improves their interactions with their surroundings and their motivation to do homework. Protagonist Fouad reconciles himself with his identity by creating a puppet alter ego named Firas Al-Attass - Sneezing Firas. Now able to play with his neighbour Katia, they imagine solutions to all their city’s problems.
Music - Charles Aznavour
Arad Fort, 8.30pm
Dubbed the French Frank Sinatra, the famed romantic chanson tenor Charles Aznavour has penned more than 800 songs, recorded more than 1,000 of them in French, English, German and Spanish and sold over 100 million records in all. His songs have been recorded by an astonishing array of performers such as Andrea Bocelli, Bob Dylan, Sting and Elvis Costello and now there’s a chance to see him perform some of them here in Bahrain.
March 17-June 8
Exibition - Istanbul Modern - Bahrain
Bahrain National Museum
Istanbul Modern – Bahrain is a selection from the contemporary and photography collections of Istanbul Museum of Modern Art. Gathering together 244 works by 94 artists from different periods, the exhibition focuses on contemporary themes such as imagination, identity, the interdisciplinary nature of visual culture and more. Istanbul Modern – Bahrain is the latest in a series of shows that Istanbul Modern has held in major cities since 2009.
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