*Performance of the iconic Monsoon Wedding Musical marks official opening

Qatar Museums (QM) kick-started this year’s exciting array of events organised as part of the Qatar India 2019 Year of Culture with a showing for the hugely-successful Monsoon Wedding Musical in New Delhi.

Representing the official launch of the Year of Culture festivities, the event was attended by Qatar's ambassador to India Mohamed bin Khater al-Khater and QM acting CEO Ahmad al-Namla, among other VIPs.

The Monsoon Wedding Musical, popularly viewed as the anthem of modern India, originally premiered as a film in 2001 winning a Golden Lion, as well as a Golden Globe Award nomination.

The film was directed by Mira Nair and written by Sabrina Dhawan who played key roles in bringing the musical to life in 2016.

The performance was organised by QM and sponsored by the Official Airline Partner of the Year of Culture programme, Qatar Airways.

“We are proud to be the exclusive supporter of the new stage musical version of Mira Nair’s Monsoon Wedding. The Mansoon Wedding Musical is a beautiful and resonant expression of India’s vibrant diaspora, a community that has long been part of Qatar’s diverse makeup and our two countries have long enjoyed a close partnership,” Aisha Ghanem al-Attiya, head of Years of Culture Section at QM.

“Our aspiration is that the Year of Culture programme will further strengthen these ties and spur creativity and curiosity about our cultures, peoples and traditions. In 2019, the Year of Culture will be a feast of theater, literature, music, dance, cinema, and the visual arts, as India and Qatar share cultural experiences,” she explained.

Events, festivals, workshops and presentations have been specially designed to promote mutual understanding, recognition and appreciation between India and Qatar.

The expansive programme will encourage audiences in Qatar and India to explore their cultural similarities, as well as celebrate their differences.

Upcoming initiatives include a special exhibition of contemporary art from Qatar in India, a multi-disciplinary Festival of India and an exhibition by the innovative Raqs Media Collective, both in Qatar.

India will also be the guest of honour at the annual Doha International Book Fair.

Further events include a health and education initiative in collaboration with Qatar Foundation, and more.

Since its launch with Qatar-Japan 2012 under the patronage of QM chairperson HE Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the Years of Culture programme has been building bridges between Qatar and the world.

The focus for most of the 2019 will be on exploring and celebrating cultural, artistic and educational exchanges between the two countries.

The Qatar India 2019 Year of Culture was also planned in collaboration with leading institutions in Qatar and India.

These include the Qatar embassy in New Delhi, the Indian embassy in Doha, Qatar's Ministry of Culture and Sports, Qatar foundation, the National Tourism Council, and Doha Film Institute, among others.

A VIP ceremony will take place at Katara – the Cultural Village on February 4 to mark the official launch of this year’s edition in Qatar.

The stunning show titled 'Ticket to Bollywood' will also be open to the public on February 5 from 7pm.

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