Celebration of 10 Years of Light at Opening Ceremony of Sharjah Light Festival
Under the patronage of H.H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah; Sheikh Salem bin Abdulrahman Al Qasimi, Chairman of the Sharjah Ruler’s Office, along with HE Sheikh Khaled Bin Abdullah Bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Chairman of the Department of Seaports and Customs, Sheikh Saud bin Abdul Aziz Al Mualla, President of Arab Chess Federation and Chairman of Sharjah Cultural and Chess Club, and Sheikha Hayat Bint Abdul Aziz Al Khalifa, Member of the Women’s Committee of the International Olympic Committee and a member of the National Olympic Committee and board member of the Bahrain NOC, and John Rakolta Jr. The US Ambassador to the UAE and his wife Terry Rakolta, and HE Nada Askar Al Naqbi, Director General of Sharjah Women Sports Foundation and HE Reem Bin Karam, Director, Nama Women Advancement Establishment, and several dignitaries graced the opening ceremony of the Sharjah Light Festival today (Wednesday, February 5, 2020) in front of Sharjah City Municipality. Organized by Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority (SCTDA), the event highlights the celebration of 10 years of the Sharjah Light Festival, a unique and captivating festival for residents and visitors across Sharjah.
Over the years, the Sharjah Light Festival has successfully provided an astonishing line up of light shows since its inaugural event in 2011. The highly entertaining and interactive festival has become a major tourist attraction in Sharjah, promoting the emirate’s landmarks while also highlighting the beauty of the architectural and engineering details of these buildings and monuments in addition to the emirate’s unique cultural and architectural heritage, further enhancing its global status as a popular family destination, in line with the goals of Sharjah Tourism Vision 2021.
His Excellency Khalid Jasim Al Midfa, Chairman of Sharjah Commerce and Tourism Development Authority, said: “Today we celebrate 10 years of this successful event, simultaneously being held across 19 different locations in the emirate. This event embodies creativity in ideas, mission and art, relying on lights, colors, music and modern technologies, in presenting the finest shows that transform Sharjah into a field of harmonious art curated by a group of international artists, with the notable participation of university students in the emirate.”
Al Midfa added, “Sharjah Light Festival itself is an innovative and exceptional approach towards promoting the emirate and contributes effectively to attracting more visitors from all over the world, all thanks to the generous and unlimited support of H.H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, who always encourages us to invest in the various energies, resources and capabilities that characterize the emirate in order to move forward on the path of development and prosperity and to strengthen the position of the Emirate of Sharjah on the global tourism map.”
In his speech, Al Midfa said, “We are proud of the achievements of the Emirate of Sharjah in various sectors and fields. This festival, in turn, has proven, over the past editions, that it is the fruit of many parties and institutions in the government and private sectors. Thanks to everyone the festival has become a global event which has a mass turnout in excess of one million visitors annually, a clear indication that Sharjah is a world-class tourist destination.”
The opening ceremony witnessed a presentation entitled, ’Glorious Sharjah,’ which brought together the four elements; water, fire, earth and air, in a dazzling show, taking the audience on a visual journey exploring the depths of cultural heritage in Sharjah and uncovering future horizons, to reflect that the emirate is a meeting place for culture and the whole world. The architecture unfolds element by element till the whole building seems to move away to find the first Emirati astronaut who floats in space surrounded by a visual allegory of Arab sciences and discoveries, a tribute to the achievements of the UAE and Sharjah’s dedication to future growth and development.
The 11-day festival will run from 5 to 15 February 2020 in a total of 19 various locations in Sharjah, featuring 21 shows, like video mapping shows, three interactive shows (the first one in University City Hall and the second and third in Al Majaz Waterfront), two light sculptures at Al Majaz, and one live show along with fireworks displays.
The University City Hall building will showcase an interactive show titled ’Planet Sharjah.’ This interactive show, which mixes video and AR maps techniques, is characterized by its presentation of the idea of traveling around a world inspired by elements of Sharjah and the planet Sharjah. It also allows members of the public to to enjoy the experience of this technology and change elements of the display using a remote-control panel or through mobile devices.
Al Majaz Waterfront will showcase another interactive presentation entitled ’Resonance & Kontakt,’ which magnificently echoes the light tunnel that runs between palm trees. Here the audience is invited to walk around and change the atmosphere through an interactive interface located at the entrance. An additional display on the other side of Al Majaz Waterfront is entitled ’Waves of Light,’ which is an attractive folklore show, representing the true colors of Sharjah and the global harmony that exists between people of different cultures. This distinguished display combines folklore, lights, music, video and fireworks.
Locations include University City Hall, American University of Sharjah, Sharjah Police Academy, University of Sharjah, Sharjah Mosque, Sharjah City Municipality, Sharjah Roads & Transport Authority, Al Majaz Light Sculpture, live show at Al Majaz Waterfront and Khalid Lagoon, Masjid Al Noor, Al Qasba- External Façade, Omran Taryam Square, Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Al Hamriyah Area Municipality, Al Wousta TV Building (Al Dhaid), University of Sharjah – Kalba, House of Justice – Khorfakkan, Arab Academy for Science, Technology & Maritime Transport – Khorfakkan, and Masjid Sheikh Rashid Bin Ahmad Al Qasimi (Dibba Al Hisn). This year, there are two locations for Food Truck Areas; the first opposite University City Hall, and the second is opposite the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, free parking is available at both. This year’s edition of the festival food truck area is also expected to see the participation of a number of local businesses and families, due to the great popularity of these at last year’s edition. The daily shows run from 6 :00 pm to 11:00 pm on weekdays (Saturday to Wednesday) and 6:00 pm to 12:00 midnight on weekends (Thursday and Friday).