Theater and Performing Arts Commission launches 3rd Qemam International Festival for Mountain Performance Arts in Aseer

The Theater and Performing Arts Commission launched the third edition of Qemam International Festival for Mountain Performance Arts in Aseer

ABHA, SAUDI ARABIA, January 21, 2024 / — The Saudi Theater and Performing Arts Commission, one of 11 sector specific commissions under the Ministry of Culture, has launched the third edition of Qemam International Festival for Mountain Performance Arts today, which will run until January 27, 2024, at eight archaeological sites across the Aseer region. The festival is organized to raise awareness of the vast art and historical heritage of the Kingdom and the world, showcase traditional performing arts, contribute to the further development of the theatrical and performing arts sector, and enhance the quality of life.

The festival began with a vibrant parade on Prince Sultan Road in Khamis Mushait. It featured 20 Saudi groups and 25 international groups who showcased 40 mountain-themed performances wearing traditional attires. The opening ceremony took place at King Khalid University Theater in Abha, featuring renowned artists Melhem Zein and Fouad Abdelwahed who performed mountain-inspired songs alongside local performance groups that enthralled the audience.

Sultan Al-Bazie, CEO of the Theater and Performing Arts Commission, highlighted that this year’s festival brings unprecedented developments compared to previous editions. The event boasts a lineup of 15 new performance groups, with four hailing from Saudi Arabia and twelve representing different parts of the world. Moreover, there are eight extra performances inspired by mountains, surpassing the number showcased at last year’s event.

This year’s edition of the festival introduces groundbreaking advancements with theatrical performances from local and international artists at eight locations which are Basta Al-Qabil, Bin Hamasan Village, Shamsan Castle, Bin Adwan Heritage village, Malik Historical Palace, Al-Mushait Palaces, Al-Abo Sarrah Palaces, and the Castles of Abu Nuqata Al-Mutahmi.

The festival also features a variety of cultural activities at these locations, highlighting the historical treasures of the region and local traditional performance arts. visitors can explore shops selling crafts and gifts, enjoy local cuisine, relax in designated areas, listen to live music performances, and participate in diverse children’s activities. Additionally, a vast cultural program including interactive cultural seminars and workshops conducted by local and international experts will be held at Abha Literary Club to provide insights into the history of mountain arts, costumes, and traditional artistic professions such as sculpture and weaving.

The festival is an annual event organized by the Saudi Theater and Performing Arts Commission in the Aseer region to introduce the local community, expatriates and tourists to the heritage of various performing arts both domestically and globally create job opportunities for local talents and encourage international cultural exchange.

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