On the evening of Saturday, 5 November, Mawlana Hazar Imam hosted a dinner and concert at the Ismaili Centre, Dubai for the international attendees of the Aga Khan Award for Architecture.
Prince Amyn, Prince Hussain and Prince Aly Muhammad joined Hazar Imam, who welcomed guests, including members of the Steering Committee, the Master Jury and the winners of the Aga Khan Award, as well as the Ismaili Leaders’ International Forum.
The feature of the evening was a rare musical encounter between the talented and innovative artists from Afghanistan, China, Italy, and Syria. Produced by the Aga Khan Music Initiative, the concert featured Homayoun Sakhi, Wu Man, Basel Rajoub, Salar Nader, Andrea Piccioni, and Feras Charestan performing on the Afghan rubab, pipa, saxophone, tabla, frame drums and the qanun. The group’s newly created compositions, improvisations and contemporary arrangements were inspired by the ancient musical traditions that they each draw upon.
The highlight of their performance was the final piece, Madhuvanti, composed by Homayoun Sakhi and arranged for a unique combination of instruments that represent the Eastern and Western ends of the historical Silk Route. Madhuvanti was performed again at the Aga Khan Award for Architecture 2016 Award Ceremony on Sunday in Al Ain, together with the recitation of a poem celebrating the history and achievements of the United Arab Emirates.
The Aga Khan Music Initiative is an interregional music and arts education programme that supports talented musicians and educators in preserving, transmitting and further developing their musical heritage in contemporary forms. First launched in Central Asia, the programme has expanded to include artists and audiences in the North and West Africa, Asia and the Middle East.
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Source: The Ismaili org
About the Ismaili Centre Dubai
The Ismaili Centre against the Dubai skyline. Photo: Gary Otte
The site of the Ismaili Centre, Dubai was a gift of the Ruling Family of Dubai presented by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai, to His Highness the Aga Khan on the occasion of the Silver Jubilee of his accession to the Imamat in 1982.
Over the subsequent quarter century, the Ismaili Muslim community in Dubai grew and evolved together with the city itself. As the metropolis expanded, the site in Oud Metha saw its residential and commercial neighbourhood gradually enriched by the establishment of cultural and social facilities. In parallel, the community and the Aga Khan Development Network increased their engagement with philanthropic, academic, humanitarian and development organisations in Dubai and the wider region.
It soon became clear that a complex around which to centre these activities could contribute also to its immediate surroundings. The Ismaili Centre, Dubai was conceived in an effort to complement evolutions in technology and urban development with a long-established endeavour to revitalise the traditions of architecture, craftsmanship and landscape design in the Islamic world.
His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum shares with Mawlana Hazar Imam, a vision for the future in keeping with Islamic traditions of search for knowledge and contributing to the betterment of humanity. It is in this shared spirit that the construction and development of the Centre advanced. The foundation stone was laid on 13 December 2003, and the Centre was opened on 27 March 2008 by Mawlana Hazar Imam in the presence of His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum and His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan – senior members of the ruling families of the United Arab Emirates.
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