Creativity cannot thrive without a free environment, Minister of Culture, Arts and Heritage HE Dr Hamad bin Abdulaziz al-Kuwari said at the launch of the Doha Creativity and Freedom Festival on Thursday.
Al-Kuwari and Arab Democracy Foundation (ADF) secretary general Mohsen Marzouq jointly inaugurated the four-day festival.
The event opened with a performance by a Moroccan folkloric group and rendition of nationalist songs by Syrian singer Samih Shuqair.
The opening ceremony was followed by an arts exhibition in the National Theatre featuring Arab photographers and painters.
In his address, al-Kuwari said the festival sought to support “marginalised” artistes.
Marzouk noted that the festival’s activities were spread all over Doha, including shopping malls and universities, to reach the maximum number of people.
The festival includes screening of Arab films at the Royal Plaza, music nights at the National Theatre, painting workshops at the Youth Creativity Centre, art exhibitions at Souq Waqif and cultural seminars at the Grand Regency Hotel.
Shuqair, who has become a legend by composing and performing nationalist songs with themes such as resistance against Israel and injustice, introduced this genre of music for the first time to the Doha audience.
Cultural expert at the Ministry of Culture, Arts and Heritage and Gulf Times editor-in-chief Dr Marzook Basher Binmarzook said the organising committee chose the participating artistes based on their struggle for freedom and preservation of Arab dignity.
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