Today is the first anniversary of the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature’s move into Dar Al Adaab, our year-round home in the Al Fahidi Historic Area, Dubai.
Over the course of the past year we have held successful events with authors Peter James, Julia Johnson and Mini Nair and world-famous chef Antonio Carluccio, we have hosted creative writing workshops for children, and we participated in the closing party of the Dubai International Film Festival, inviting poets to perform to party guests.
We also, of course, used our permanent base of operations to prepare for the enormously successful 2012 Emirates Airline Festival of Literature – and since last March we have been busy putting together the 2013 Festival, our fifth edition.
In November 2012, we are hosting a number of returning authors at Dar Al Adaab. Acclaimed poet Imtiaz Dharker will be teaching poetry workshops for the public and for the winners of the 2012 Taaleem Poetry Award, as well as heading up an evening of poetry readings; bestselling young adult novelist Tim Bowler will likewise be teaching writing workshops, including one for the winners of the Oxford University Press Short Story Competition; and Fiona Lindsay will be visiting schools and training the moderators for the 2013 LitFest in the arts of introducing, interviewing and chairing successful Festival sessions.
On 24 November we will also be staging the first ever play to be held in Dar Al Adaab’s Literary Square – another first for the LitFest.
Al Teen (Mud) was performed at the sixth Dubai Festival of Youth Theatre by the Sharjah Folklore Arts and Theatre Association Modern Theatre, and tells the story of a father’s emotional battle with his daughter over her decision to marry an unknown man.
LitFest Director Isobel Abulhoul saw it at the Festival of Youth Theatre and thought that the play’s themes and atmosphere were perfectly suited to our home in Dubai’s historic centre.
The play will be free to all. It begins at 7:30pm on Saturday 24 November 2012, and will be performed in Arabic with English subtitles. More details to follow next week.