Sudanese actor and theatre director Ali Mahdi Nouri and French professor Cherif Khaznadar to receive 2010 UNESCO-Sharjah Prize for Arab Culture
Sudanese actor and theatre director Ali Mahdi Nouri and French professor Cherif Khaznadar have been awarded the 2010 UNESCO-Sharjah Prize for Arab Culture. The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, will present them with the prize on 15 April 2011.
Ali Mahdi Nouri (Sudan) founded in 2004 the Al-Bugaa Theatre, which travels around conflict zones in Sudan and stages plays performed by child soldiers and war orphans. His creations, inspired by Sudanese cultural heritage, comprise various narration techniques as well as folklore and pantomime. “This work uses the Arab language and culture – notably songs and stories – as strengths upon which the young actors can rebuild their lives,” underlined the international jury.
Professor Cherif Khaznadar (France), who is also a theatre director, poet and novelist, founded in 1982 and still runs the Maison des cultures du monde in Paris. The international jury of the prize noted the pride of place he has given Arab cultural events in the programme of the Maison des cultures du monde. It also cited his invaluable contribution to “the dialogue between Arab culture and other cultures for nearly 50 years.”
The Sharjah Prize – of US$30,000 for each laureate, funded by the Emirate of Sharjah – was proposed by Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohamed Al-Qassimi and approved by UNESCO’s Executive Board in 1998. It honours individuals, groups or institutions that have made a significant contribution to the development, dissemination and promotion of Arab culture throughout the world, as well as the conservation and revitalization of Arab intangible heritage.