Bahrain Theatrical Festival 2019 was concluded on Monday after it witnessed the performance of six plays presented by local theatrical clubs and associations over six days.

Held under the patronage of H.E Shaikha Mai bint Mohammed Al Khalifa, President of Bahrain Authority of Culture and Antiquities (BACA), the festival was organised by the Arab Theatre Authority and BACA, in cooperation with the Federation of Theatre Societies in the Kingdom of Bahrain, and it was held at the Cultural Hall near Bahrain National Museum in Manama.

Besides the six shows, the festival included several other activities such as a seminar titled “Bahraini Theatre Panorama in 100 years” and a workshop on scenography.

In the closing ceremony, awards were handed over to the best actor/actresses, best performance, best director and more.

The festival was attended by a number of leading theatrical artists from several GCC and Arab countries. The Jury Panel included renowned personalities in the GCC theatrical movement, such as Mr. Abdulghani Dawood, Dr. Nermeen Al Hoty and Dr. Mohammed Saif.

The panel issued a statement by the end of the festival, explaining its work and evaluation mechanisms, in addition to its remarks and recommendations. The statement analysed the participating teams and their performances, highlighting their strong and weakness points.

The panel also recommended in its statement that the management of the festival should eliminate poor performances from the festival in its upcoming editions, and to direct the participants to dedicate more focus on local, heritage and historical content.

A total of USD15, 000 divided on eight cash prizes were handed over to the winners in a special ceremony that was held on the last day of the festival.

“The Slippers of the Captain” play, performed by Awal Theatre, won the Arab Theatre Authority Award (USD5, 000) for the best play, as well as the best actor for second leading role, which went to Amin Al Saegh.

“Haider” play, performed by Al Sawari Theatre, bagged the most number of awards, including the Arab Theatre Authority Award for the best director (USD1, 500) which went to Mohammed Shaheen, the best actress for first leading role award (USD1, 500), which was given to Jumana Al Qassab, best music and sound effects award (USD1, 000), given to Hamid Saif and best playwriting award (USD1, 500), given to writer Amin Saleh.

The Arab Theatre Authority Award for the best actor for first leading role (USD1, 500) went to Ali Marhoon for his exceptional performance in the “Summer Rain” play, while Noora Eid and Ahmed Al Omairi from the same play bagged the best actress for second leading role award (USD1, 500) and best scenography award (USD1, 500), respectively.

The closing ceremony also included the joint performance of the participating teams in a play titled “The Fifth State”, which was written as a result of the scenography workshop held during the festival and presented by Kuwaiti Scenographer Faisal Al Obaid and Kuwaiti Director Abdullah Al Turkumani.

It’s noteworthy that this is the first edition of the festival, which is part of an initiative launched by His Highness Shaikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, Member of the Federal Supreme Council of the United Arab Emirates, Ruler of Sharjah and President of the Arab Theatre Authority, with the aim of establishing a theatrical festival in every Arab country under the management of the Arab Theatre Authority, in order to promote theatrical creativity and performance.