December 17, 2023

Riyadh Theater Festival: Showcasing the Works of the Late Mohammed Al-Othaim

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In its inaugural edition, the Riyadh Theater Festival pays tribute to the pioneer of Saudi theater, Mohammed Al-Othaim, for his significant contributions to the theatrical arts. The festival highlights his theatrical legacy by presenting one of his plays and organizing an art exhibition showcasing his artistic journey.

The exhibition dedicated to the late Mohammed Al-Othaim features a collection of his writings, both in poetry and prose, along with audio recordings. It also includes the awards and certificates he received throughout his career, alongside a film depicting his life and artistic history.

Friends and colleagues speak about Al-Othaim’s profound impact, emphasizing his cultural, artistic, and intellectual influence over the past 50 years in Saudi Arabia. The film participants discuss his academic background, the initiation of his professional career, his passion for theater and writing, the quality of his artistic productions, and his deep exploration of cultural heritage.

Over the last five decades, Mohammed Al-Othaim has been a unique cultural, artistic, and intellectual phenomenon in Saudi Arabia. As a writer and poet, he infused the arts with exceptional and refined culture. His theatrical works stand out for their reliance on heritage, myth, and theatrical rituals, skillfully incorporating them to convey his intended messages. Al-Othaim drew inspiration from Arab and Islamic heritage, as well as Saudi folk traditions.

Throughout his artistic journey, Al-Othaim meticulously navigated his creative path, selecting only the best to present to the audience. He considered the theater as the gateway to art, a platform through which he could showcase his creative works. Devoting significant time to playwriting, he successfully presented 45 theatrical works over 33 years. Notably, he was the first to write a play for the Souq Okaz Festival, titled “Amr ibn Qais.”

The Riyadh Theater Festival, launched last Wednesday under the patronage of the Minister of Culture, Prince Badr bin Abdullah bin Farhan, and organized by the Theater and Performing Arts Authority, aims to revitalize the Saudi theatrical scene by presenting a series of Saudi theatrical productions to support local theater production.

The festival, running until December 24th at the Princess Nourah bint Abdulrahman University Conference Center in Riyadh, hosts Tunisia as the guest of honor this year, spreading the essence of Tunisian Arab culture and its authentic creative theatrical art.

Source: Okaz

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