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Sharjah International Narrator Forum concludes

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SHARJAH, 24th September, 2022 (WAM) — The participants at the Sharjah International Narrator Forum (SINF) extended their heartfelt acknowledgement and gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, for the outstanding support and care that His Highness has offered to the Forum and also to the local and Gulf heritage, artworks, and the promotion of Joint local, Arab and international cooperation in this field.

The tribute was a part of the conclusion ceremony of the 22nd edition of the Sharjah International Narrator Forum, which was organised by the Sharjah Institute for Heritage (SIH) at the Expo Centre Sharjah, from 21-23 September, under the slogan “Sea Tales”.

This year’s forum witnessed remarkable participation from local, Arab, and regional countries, which comprised 160 researchers and specialists in literature and folklore. In addition, participants from 46 countries, were a part of academic sessions, artistic events, and entertaining educational workshops, which were in line with the pillars of the forum, and curated creatively with the slogan of this year’s session.

On the side lines of the closing ceremony, Dr Abdul Aziz Al Musallam, Chairman of the Sharjah Institute for Heritage and Chairman of the Supreme Organizing Committee of the SINF, said, “This year’s forum highlighted many activities, and the achievements showcased have won the admiration and praise of the participants and visitors. Full of rich and valuable stories, these achievements would not have seen the light and reached the world, had it not been for the constant and unlimited support of His Highness Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council, Ruler of Sharjah, who has been a constant force of cooperation and support to promote such cultural events, reinforcing the influential and leading role of Sharjah in the space of Arab and international culture.”

Aisha Al Hussan Al Shamsi, Director of the Arab Heritage Centre of the SIH and General Coordinator of the SINF, said: “The three days of the forum were full of discussion, during which several elaborate and comprehensive scientific papers were presented. This allowed the participants to discuss multiple and complex issues about maritime heritage and its realms, symbols, and treasures. In addition, the positive impact of research and studies will serve as a key base for academic building blocks in the maritime folklore.”

At the conclusion ceremony, Aisha Al Hussan Al Shamsi, raised a number of important recommendations, including the importance of accelerating the establishment of interactive digital structures related to narrators, and local, regional, and international living human treasures, as well as promoting and strengthening work in line with international standards, specifically the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization “UNESCO”. She also highlighted the need for offering Heritage materials through digital portals under the supervision of experts and specialists in the field and emphasized the importance of quantitative and qualitative studies of the narrators.

The SINF also suggested the importance of intensifying the participation of children, adolescents, and youth, especially at the local level, in the activities of the forum. The aim is to encourage and motivate students and children to narrate stories and express their emotions, through the International School of Storytelling of the Sharjah Institute for Heritage (SIH).

In order to promote joint Arab action, the participants called for the establishment of a union for workers in the Arab cultural heritage, to include their work, and to have a role in safeguarding and preserving intangible heritage, with folk performing arts and marine performance, especially as it is threatened with extinction, and this diploma is taken over by the Department of Artistic Heritage at the SIH.

The Sharjah International Narrator Forum concluded on a special note, which included honouring Dr Abdulaziz Al-Musallam and Aisha Al Hussan Al Shamsi, for the most prominent narrators, local Al-Nahma art teams, participating official bodies, sponsors, guests and participants from the United Arab Emirates and the representatives of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The ceremony also paid tribute to KSA’s National Day and highlighted the close ties that bind the two brotherly countries – the United Arab Emirates and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

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