Liverpool Arab Arts Festival 2014
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Liverpool Arab Arts Festival 2014

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LAAF – Liverpool Arab Arts Festival 2014

LAAF 2014 an exciting range of work from established and new artists from across the Arab world.

Family event: Saturday 7th June The BIG Saturday 12-5pm | the Bluecoat | FREE
An eagerly anticipated event, join us for an exciting day of music, food and more featuring Amira Kheir with an enchanting blend of jazz and soul and fresh from the Royal Albert Hall, Maya Yousseff.

Film: Saturday 7th June El Gusto (15) Director Safinez Bousbia 6pm | the Bluecoat | FREE
A feel good documentary about a group of older musicians coming together. This simple story transcends cultural boundaries and cultivates a strong sense of hope and happiness.

Theatre: Sunday 8th June Hassan Abdulrazzak: A Fire Blazing Brightly 5pm | the Bluecoat | £5/£3
Award winning playwright Hassan Abdulrazzak presents an exclusive reading of scenes from his new play: Rana is missing in Baghdad. She returned to Iraq to investigate her father’s past. Will she succeed in creating the positive change that eluded her father? And what revelations will she uncover about him in Baghdad?

Music: Sunday 8th June Farah Siraj 7.30pm | St Georges Hall | £15/£10
Farah Siraj’s music is a fusion of Middle Eastern music, flamenco, jazz, bossa, pop and features original compositions and traditional Middle Eastern tunes. She has shared the stage with, A.R. Rahman, performing Zariya live on MTV. This is her first UK concert. “Farah Siraj…vivacious Arabic Flamenco Jazz” Rolling Stone.

Talk: 9th – 12th June Freedom Hour 5pm, the Bluecoat | FREE
Festival-long thought provoking debates on current affairs, culture, freedom and change in the Arab world. Hear from people who are directly involved and have your say too.

Film: Monday 9th June CROP & Winter of Discontent 7pm | FACT | £6/£5
A double bill introduced by political academic Reem Abu-el-fadl. Followed by a post film discussion. CROP (U) A film by Johanna Domke & Marouan Omara Gripping account of the Egyptian revolution of 2011. The film is a series of tableaux exposing the strict control of information.
Winter of Discontent (15) Director Ibrahim El-Batout Meet individuals involved in the 2011 uprising. Dark, fascinating and not for the faint hearted.

Dance: Tuesday 10th June Funoon Wa Alwane 8pm | Unity Theatre | £10/£8
Funoon Al Arabiya come together to present the joyful and colourful dances of the rarely-seen regional folkloric music and dance of Algeria, Morocco, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Iran, Iraq and beyond.

Talk: Wednesday 11th June Book of Gaza 6pm | the Bluecoat | FREE
Join us for this exciting book launch. The Book of Gaza brings together ten fiction writers in a unique anthology presented in English translation for the first time. Edited by Atef Abuseif.

Film: Wednesday 11th June Omar (15) Director Hany Abu-Assad 7pm | FACT | £6/£5
Controversial and action packed. Omar climbs the separation wall in the West Bank to visit the woman he loves. He attempts to elude intelligence forces, but is press ganged into catching a member of the resistance.

Exhibition: Choose Your Own Adventure 10am – 6pm, 6th – 29th June the Bluecoat | FREE
A major commission curated by Danah Abdullah that plays with the format found in old board games and children’s books. Devised especially for the bluecoat’s public spaces.

Exhibition: Al Noor -Fragile Vision 10am – 6pm, 7th -17th June the Bluecoat | FREE
In collaboration with DaDaFest, British Council and Arts Council England. Rachel Gadsden’s work explores themes of fragility and resilience, and the universal and deeply positive desire to survive. Countries involved in this exhibition: Bahrain, Oman, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Theatre: 11th & 12th June Waiting for Summer Director Diyan Zora 8pm | Unity Theatre | £10/£8
Swivel Theatre Company present an all-female cast in a series of gripping new plays.
Advice to Iraqi Women By Martin Crimp.
You don’t have to be American to get laid but it helps By Hassan Abdulrazzak. Based on the short story ‘Madam Vienna’ by Yusuf Idris (
The Worst Cook in the West Bank By Hannah Khalil. A
The Reception By Maximillian Singh Gill.

Film: Friday 13th June When I saw you (12) Director Annemarie Jacir 7.30pm | the Bluecoat | £6/£5
It’s 1967. Changes are happening in Jordan. Young Tarek struggles to adjust to life in a refugee camp and longs to be reunited with his father. His adventurous nature leads him on a life changing journey.

Talk: Friday 13th June A Land Without Jasmine 6pm | the Bluecoat | FREE
A conversation with Yemeni writer of A Land Without Jasmine, Wajdi al-Ahdal 2014 winner of the Saif Ghobash Banipal award for translation and the editor of Banipal, Samuel Shimon.

Workshop: Saturday 14th June Drumming Workshop with Simona Abdallah 1.30pm the Bluecoat FREE
Simona Abdallah is one of few professional female darbuka players. She works as a soloist and has performed with Natasha Atlas. Recently returned from tours of Singapore and Kenya, join her in this fantastic workshop for all abilities.

Film: Saturday 14th June Wadjda (PG) Director Haifaa Al-Mansour 3pm | the Bluecoat | FREE
An Oscar nominated film set in Saudi Arabia. A young girl wants to buy a bike, in a society where bicycles are deemed dangerous to a girl’s virtue. Set against a background where women are not even allowed to drive, follow Wadjda in her boundary breaking journey.

Talk: Saturday 14th June Syria Speaks 5pm | the Bluecoat | FREE
This lively event marks the publication of Syria Speaks: Art and Culture from the Frontline, a unique anthology of literature, art and culture.

Theatre: Saturday 14th June Sarmada 7.30pm | the Bluecoat | £7/£5
After their sell-out show last year, Diwan are back in a new show based on Fadi Azzam’s novel Sarmada*, long-listed for the Arabic Booker Prize in 2011. This is a remarkable contemporary of the Arabian Nights. *Sarmada is a word created by the author, a derivative female form of the noun-verb ‘to perpetuate’ or ‘perpetual’. The title places women at the heart of this story that spans several generations, from Syria to Paris and back again.

Family: Sunday 15th June Family Day 12 noon Sefton Park Palm House | FREE
An exciting climax to this year, with stalls, food, music and performance. Featuring fantastic Oud player Attab Haddad. Simona Abdallah brings us her fusion of ancestral Arabic rhythms, House, Electronica and World Music. London based band Karama will charm audiences with their inspired African and Arabic classical sound and more beats from the Al Awadhel Band. Make sure you’re there!

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