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Al Din Festival brings cultural extravaganza to Oman


Muscat: The Al Din International Festival is a celebrated theatrical event that takes center stage in the heart of Muscat every two years.

Organized by the Al Din Theater Troupe for Culture and Art, this festival is a spectacular performing arts showcase featuring local and international theatre groups. It is a momentous occasion filled with cultural enrichment, star-studded performances, and global participation.

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One of the festival's unique characteristics is its ability to combine three different theatres concurrently: Adult theatre, Children's theatre, and Street theatre performances. Additionally, various competitions such as the Best Theatrical Picture Competition and the Best Media Team Competition add to the diversity and creativity that envelops the event.

Muhammad al Nabhani, the head of the Al Din Theater for Culture and Art troupe and the festival's organising committee, emphasises the festival's positive impact on cultural tourism in the Sultanate of Oman. He underscores the festival's role in attracting distinguished artistic figures from all corners of the world.

The Al Din Theater Troupe for Culture and Art, established in 1994 in the Wilayat Samail in the Al Dakhiliyah Governorate, announced its presence in 1998. The first Al Din Theater Festival debuted in April 2015, initially dedicated to adult and street theatre. Over time, the festival evolved into an international affair, transcending its local and Arab origins. The organisers remained committed to the festival, even when unforeseen circumstances affected the participation of some international guests.

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The fourth edition of the Al Din Festival, the first to be internationally recognised, occurred from October 22 to 31 under the theme "Welcome to the Sultanate of Oman" at the Omani Automobile Association in Muscat Governorate.

Mohammed bin Salem al Nabhani, head of the Al Din International Festival, revealed impressive statistics about the festival's reach. The festival received 288 international performance submissions, 47 children's theatre performances, 136 adult theatre performances, and 117 street theatre performances from 31 Arab and foreign countries. The participating teams hailed from Oman, Kuwait, Jordan, Iraq, Tunisia, Egypt, Syria, Iran, Spain, Kazakhstan, Morocco, India, Germany, France, Russia, and the United Kingdom. The adjudication process involved a panel of 15 members, with six from Oman and nine representing countries such as Morocco, Qatar, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Germany, France, Russia, and the United Kingdom.

Furthermore, the festival featured 260 distinguished guests. It hosted five theatrical workshops to nurture and develop talents, allowing participants to express themselves and discover their artistic abilities. Additionally, eight dialogue sessions facilitated interaction and knowledge exchange among the festival's participants, including more than 250 young men and women, college and university students, and dedicated organisers, all contributing to the festival's success.

The festival's conference witnessed the signing of cooperation agreements with various institutions, such as the Oman Automobile Association, the logistical partner. The association played a vital role in providing the festival's venue, preparing the theatres, and supplying technical equipment.

Another significant agreement was inked with Future Technology Labs to launch digital copies using the internationally recognised "non-fungible tokens" (NFT) technology. These digital tokens were designed to serve as cherished souvenirs inspired by Omani culture and heritage. They reflect the rich historical elements of Omani civilisation and exemplify the festival's commitment to promoting Omani culture globally.

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