11

Jun

Liverpool Arab Arts Festival Reveals Full Programme of Events

The UK’s biggest annual celebration of Arab culture encourages guests to ask themselves ‘What do I know?’ as it reveals its 20th anniversary festival theme.

The packed programme of diverse events for the 2018 edition features The Shroud Maker, a dark new satire by Ahmed Masoud, a ground-breaking production of At Home in Gaza and London, where a mix of live-streaming and recorded video bring performers in Gaza and London together and the UK premiere of documentary film Science in Exile.

Also premiering at LAAF 2018 is new performance piece What Do I Know? Taking inspiration from the poetry of Liverpool/Yemeni spoken word poet Amina Atiq and starring acclaimed composer and singer/songwriter of Syrian Sephardi heritage, Ana Silvera, the performance looks at the effects of war in Yemen and provides the foundation for the theme of 20th anniversary festival.

Challenging and hopeful, the theme encourages festival audiences to step away from the assumptions made around Arab life and explore its reality through the lived experience, expressed through diverse art forms of music, dance, visual art, theatre, film and spoken word.

Curated by LAAF – an Arts Council England National Portfolio Organisation – and associates, the 2018 line-up continues the festival’s mission to provide Arab arts and culture with an international platform, bringing diverse groups of people together and increasing the public’s knowledge and appreciation of Arab culture and its people.

Taher Qassim MBE, Chair of Liverpool Arab Arts Festival said: “Our festival has come a long way since it was founded in 1998 and this year’s festival theme ‘What do I know?’ allows us to reflect on where we have come from and what we have learned during the past two decades.

“Music, theatre, spoken word, film, visual art and family activities all feature in this year’s exciting festival, showcasing a full spectrum of engaging and enthralling Arab arts. We invite all people from all walks of life to join this year’s incredible range of artists to celebrate the vibrant and diverse Arab cultures and art forms and ask themselves in reflection, what do I know now about Arab life?”

Jane Beardsworth, Director North, Arts Council England, said: “Liverpool Arab Arts Festival has celebrated to Arabic culture for 20 years and I’m delighted that the Arts Council continues to support the festival as part of our 2018-22 National Portfolio. Local communities and visitors are introduced to a wide range of arts and culture, including theatre, dance, music and visual arts, and I’m sure that this year’s programme will bring an even wider audience to the festival.”

For more information on LAAF 2018, go to www.arabartsfestival.com.

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