Sunday, November 3, 2013

This theatre ain't gonna finish itself

We talk a lot about how Dubai needs to have this or that. We want to "do something", until we realize what that entails. But what if "doing something" was neatly packaged and presented to you with someone else taking care of the paperwork and logistics? Drama Dubai is offering just such an opportunity, by opening their new community theater, The Courtyard Playhouse, to crowd-funding on the Aflamnah platform.

I walked out of the venue of their Desert Monologues course showcase last night, impressed once again by how they mold and focus the stage skills of their course attendees, as they did with me almost two years ago. I try to attend this showcase every season, because I know this is one of the major founts/magnets of talent in local performing arts, and that, at the very least, I will be blown away by what many of these everyday people can do under stage lights.

As confirmed by the diverse cast on stage last night, Drama Dubai has been accepting of all kinds of people, always willing to work hard with those willing to work with them, while at the same time holding themselves and those they train to high standards. From the improv arc I have been following under their guidance since over a year ago, I know that they are professionals who take themselves absolutely seriously: supplementing our rehearsals with visits by experienced guest performers, sharing books, videos and other material with us, and getting our troupe recognition from Theatresports International (making us, by the way, the only such troupe in the MENA region).

And it's not even the theater itself that needs building; they and their partners have already invested heavily in the completion of the actual theater close to the heart of the Al Quoz arts district, complete with plush bleacher seating, a tech booth, and ample stage space. They just need help with the finishing touches: lights, changing rooms and washrooms. As per the aforementioned high standards, Drama Dubai has been working patiently and tirelessly to put everything together just right. They want this to look like the real deal, and so should we, because this will benefit all theater-lovers in the country. They are even offering seat naming rights, tickets, courses, and other generous rewards for donors.

If you have the means, and you love the arts, there is no excuse. Visit and throw in your support now.

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