The 9th edition of Qatar’s Traditional Dhow Festival was launched yesterday at Katara – the Culture Village Foundation, under the patronage of His Highness the Amir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.
The event, open to the public until December 16, from 9am to 12 noon and 3pm to 10pm, showcases Qatar’s rich maritime heritage and the deep-rooted marine life traditions in the region.
Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Iraq, Turkey, India, Greece, Italy, Spain, Iran, and Zanzibar are the participants. The opening event saw HE Sheikh Faisal bin Qassim al-Thani, former minister HE Dr Mohamed Saleh al-Sada, Katara general manager Dr Khalid bin Ibrahim al-Sualiti and a number of other dignitaries in attendance.
“This is the first time that the Dhow Festival is being held over two weeks. It is also coinciding with the 24th Arabian Gulf Cup Football Tournament and the FIFA Club World Cup Qatar 2019,” said Dr Sulaiti while launching the festival. “The Dhow Festival is the most distinguished among the traditional and cultural festivals and seeks to inspire the young generation to learn and follow from their forefathers’ cultural past. Katara has put in all efforts for people of all ages and from all walks of life to come and see this exciting and encouraging festival. We expect many more people this time and of all nationalities, and also fans of football who are and will be in Qatar through sport,” he added.
The participants are presenting some pieces of their related traditional music and dance. The festival features a programme packed with activities, events and exhibitions, traditional art, in addition to competitions, cultural and recreational activities that give special focus on traditional marine history of their countries.
This edition of the festival offers the visitors a closer look on the traditional methods of fishing, market place, shipbuilding, ropes, sail, dredging machine, craftsmanship, trade, tools to classic dhow boats, traditional food and seafood, music, and even fancy footwear.
Dr Selcuk Kursad Koca, director of the Turkish Culture Center, Doha, stressed that the festival gives ample room for the participants to showcase their marine culture and traditions. He described it as a celebration of marine life and an active hub for related cultures from different countries to meet at a single platform and display their related culture, arts, history craftsmanship and folk heritage. Maritime museums, folk band performances and art workshops for children are among the activities. The festival also includes a forum that will host the crew of Fath Al Khair 4, which completed a historic voyage in Europe promoting the 2022 FIFA World Cup last July.
Maritime competitions including rowing, sailing, Al Haddaq, free swimming, Al Brikha, Al Jinan, Shoush and Tafrees, in addition to Senyar competition, will also be held during the course of the two-week long festival.
Schoolchildren to present
‘Al Qumash’ over weekend
The 9th edition of Qatar’s Traditional Dhow Festival will be brightened by the presentation of ‘Al Qumash’ – a storytelling presentation by schoolchildren about Qatar’s rich pearl diving history, the glorious maritime history, on Thursday and Friday, at 7pm and 9pm.
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