Deal signed to preserve Saudi national heritage in Hail

Deal signed to preserve national heritage in Hail. (SPA)
Deal signed to preserve national heritage in Hail. (SPA)
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Updated 10 September 2022

Deal signed to preserve Saudi national heritage in Hail

Deal signed to preserve national heritage in Hail. (SPA)
  • The agreement stipulated several areas of cooperation that include protecting and preserving cultural heritage sites in Hail and cooperating in the works of World Heritage Sites, research, survey and archaeological excavation

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Heritage Authority and the Hail Region Development Authority have signed a cooperation deal to strengthen partnership, integration and cooperation in preserving national heritage in Hail and safeguard its buildings and sites of architectural heritage.

The agreement was signed by Omar Abduljabbar, CEO of Hail Region Development Authority, and Sultan Al-Saleh, director general of partnerships and business development at the Heritage Authority, in Riyadh.

The agreement stipulated several areas of cooperation that include protecting and preserving cultural heritage sites in Hail and cooperating in the works of World Heritage Sites, research, survey and archaeological excavation.

It also included joint cooperation in scientific publishing of surveys and excavation works, preservation of architectural heritage sites and development of heritage villages and inner cities in the region.

The deal included a joint contribution agreement to restore, operate, invest and categorize architectural heritage buildings and participation in supervising restoration works. It outlined joint cooperation in the area of crafts and handicrafts through cooperating in establishing houses for craftspeople in Hail’s provinces that aim to produce, sell and exhibit products for visitors and empower and train craftspeople.

The cooperation agreement comes in the context of the Hail Region Development Authority’s efforts in the comprehensive planning and development of the region.

The Heritage Authority aims to enhance its partnership with government and private agencies related to national heritage and promote the implementation of joint projects and programs to support, protect and develop the national heritage sector. This is in line with the authority’s responsibilities for organizing, developing and enhancing the heritage sector in the Kingdom, and encouraging its practitioners.

 

 


Jeddah hosts 2nd Global Conference for Giftedness and Creativity

Jeddah hosts 2nd Global Conference for Giftedness and Creativity
Updated 27 November 2022

Jeddah hosts 2nd Global Conference for Giftedness and Creativity

Jeddah hosts 2nd Global Conference for Giftedness and Creativity
  • Event aims to enhance Kingdom’s global leadership by nurturing youth

RIYADH: Makkah Governor Prince Khaled Al-Faisal, on behalf of King Salman bin Abdulaziz, is set to attend the Global Conference for Giftedness and Creativity, in Jeddah, which runs from Dec. 10 to 14.

The conference, now in its second edition, is organized by the King Abdulaziz and His Companions Foundation for Giftedness and Creativity, and will be held under the theme “Journey Toward the New Future.”

Mawhiba Secretary-General Amal Al-Hazzaa said that the conference aims to enhance the Kingdom’s global leadership by supporting and nurturing talented youth.

It will bring together young creative minds from all over the world to form teams to work on forward-thinking solutions to the global challenges of sustainable development.

Many world experts are participating, along with representatives from leading companies and universities, including SABIC, Aramco, NEOM, the King Abdullah University, and the King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology.

The conference will feature an “idea-thon,” in which more than 100 participants from the world’s top 50 universities will use collective thinking principles to create innovative solutions to challenges.

Keynote speakers include Saudi Minister of Education Yousef Al-Benyan,  Professor of Collective Intelligence, Public Policy & Social Innovation at University College London Sir Geoff Mulgan, and NASA astronaut and orthopedic surgeon Dr. Robert Lee Satcher.


Saudi Arabia launches Aquatic Animal Diseases Network in the Middle East

Saudi Arabia launches Aquatic Animal Diseases Network in the Middle East
Updated 27 November 2022

Saudi Arabia launches Aquatic Animal Diseases Network in the Middle East

Saudi Arabia launches Aquatic Animal Diseases Network in the Middle East
  • Aim is to ensure sustainable growth of aquatic, marine species in food production
  • Members include countries bordering Red Sea, Arabian Gulf

RIYADH: Saudi Minister of Environment, Water and Agriculture Abdul Rahman bin Abdul Mohsen Al-Fadhli launched the Aquatic Animal Diseases Network in the Middle East on Sunday in Riyadh, the Saudi Press Agency reported.

The network aims to strengthen the aquaculture industry and the role of aquatic and marine species in food production, as well as control the spread of diseases to ensure sustainable growth in the region’s aquaculture production. 

It also aims to train veterinarians and aquatic health specialists, and to coordinate the efforts of international organizations providing aquatic health services. 

Members of the network include countries bordering the Red Sea and the Arabian Gulf, including Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Somalia, Sudan, the UAE and Yemen.

The Fish Health and Safety Laboratory in Jeddah will serve as a reference laboratory for member states. 

The network was launched in the presence of Dr. Monique Eloit, director general of the World Organization for Animal Health. 

Saudi Arabia and the organization are collaborating on several projects, including the Kingdom’s rabies, foot-and-mouth disease and peste des petits ruminants programs. 

They are also working together on a project to evaluate veterinary services in the Kingdom, as well as a veterinary laboratory twinning program with reference laboratories in France and Italy.

 


Saudi deputy foreign minister meets with Chinese ambassador to Kingdom

Saudi deputy foreign minister meets with Chinese ambassador to Kingdom
Updated 27 November 2022

Saudi deputy foreign minister meets with Chinese ambassador to Kingdom

Saudi deputy foreign minister meets with Chinese ambassador to Kingdom
  • Officials reviewed bilateral relations and ways of enhancing them to serve common interests

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s deputy foreign minister met with the Chinese ambassador to the Kingdom in Riyadh on Sunday, Saudi Press Agency reported.

During the meeting, Waleed Al-Khuraiji and Chen Weiqing reviewed bilateral relations and ways of enhancing them to serve common interests. They also discussed issues of common interest.


University of Tabuk and Red Sea Global launch Saudi tourism program 

University of Tabuk and Red Sea Global launch Saudi tourism program 
Updated 27 November 2022

University of Tabuk and Red Sea Global launch Saudi tourism program 

University of Tabuk and Red Sea Global launch Saudi tourism program 
  • University of Tabuk and Red Sea Global have launched the tourism educational program Red Sea Hospitality Pioneers
  • Graduates of the program will be qualified for job opportunities at hotels, tourist resorts, restaurants, food and beverage departments, and event organizing companies

JEDDAH: The University of Tabuk and Red Sea Global signed a partnership to launch a tourism educational program for Saudi students, Red Sea Hospitality Pioneers.

The program will take place at the Tourism and Hospitality College of Al-Wajh governorate, located on the coast of the Red Sea.

The University of Tabuk tweeted: “The Red Sea Hospitality Pioneers Program, ending with employment will begin in the second semester of the academic year 1444 AH (2023 A.D.).”

The eight semester-program is divided into two tracks of intermediate diplomas, including the Food and Beverage Management Diploma, which will teach students operational skills including purchasing ingredients, developing menus, and preparing, presenting, and serving food and beverages.

The Hospitality Management Diploma, meanwhile, will see students learn skills that will enable them to succeed with careers in luxury hospitality services covering different aspects ranging from sales and customer services to policies and procedures used to ensure proper and smooth operations.

Graduates of the program will be qualified for job opportunities at hotels, tourist resorts, restaurants, food and beverage departments, and event organizing companies.

The Red Sea Hospitality Pioneers Program features monthly monetary rewards from RSG to be given to all enrolled students, internships at RSG-affiliated international hotels, and will see distinguished students receive internship programs at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University.

A similar program was launched previously between the same parties targeting students aged 18 and above to enhance and qualify local talents. RSG has launched many other programs over the years with the same goal, to enhance tourism quality in the region and to educate and qualify local talents, including the English For Tourism Program, the Red Sea Art Competition, as well as the Red Sea Ecotecture.


World premiere of ‘Nine Songs’ fills AlUla with excitement

World premiere of ‘Nine Songs’ fills AlUla with excitement
Updated 27 November 2022

World premiere of ‘Nine Songs’ fills AlUla with excitement

World premiere of ‘Nine Songs’ fills AlUla with excitement

ALULA: Every seat occupied beneath the vast AlUla sky at the outdoor Wadi AlFann was filled with anticipation and excitement to witness the world premiere of “Nine Songs” on Saturday night.

For two nights only, ending Nov. 27, the vision of artist Rui Fu, and co-artistic director and producer, Farooq Chaudhry, morphed from Mother Nature into life. The audience received a full sensory experience, surrounded by a carefully-curated, modern and inventive interpretation unfurling before them.

The title of the work was inspired by a collection of poems from the ancient Chinese “Songs of Chu,” dated to 300 B.C. The location for the theatrical music performance was fitting, as the ancient landscape of AlUla was incorporated into the visual elements of the show.

Chinese American singer-songwriter Rui Fu. (Huda Bashatah)

Fu blended the sounds of the wind with her own voice and instruments, such as the Chinese dulcimer, Japanese taiko drums, violins, and harps.

The Chinese American singer-songwriter specializes in improvisational singing and composing, and was inspired by traditional Chinese classical aesthetics as well as Chinese ethnic music traditions.

The audience on opening night was a mix of Saudis and non-Saudis, who filled the site, inspired by the natural landscape of AlUla and its geological structures, with light sky, and fairy-lit candles leading them along a steady pathway atop the sand.

Fu did not want the audience to be restricted by the lyrics, wishing to free people of linguistic hurdles that might arise.

Chinese American singer-songwriter Rui Fu. (Huda Bashatah)

Any speaker of any language could follow the story, with the sounds and movements their own form of communication, connecting the sky to the ground and to everything in between. Certain sections of the show blended ancient Chinese, recited in different dialects, in addition to Fu adding her own twist.

“The majority of our show is actually in my own improvised language, and I find that very helpful because it helps us to focus on the emotional essence of the melodies more, without being restricted by cultural barriers, and also language restrictions and limitations and having to figure out what it means and how to say it in order to interact with the musicians,” Fu told Arab News.

“I believe that will be a way to help us all present the music with more passion, with more intuition, and the audience will understand it as well, because it’s not supposed to be a language that you’re supposed to understand intellectually — it is supposed to be a language that you feel, along with the music,” she said.

“This is a humongous, interesting, and diverse blend of cultures. And it’s been a very rewarding challenge to see how we can bring together different perspectives — different ways of interpreting the same story from different angles — so that I believe all of us feel that we’ve expanded who we are as artists and as people as a result of this project,” Fu added.

Chinese American singer-songwriter Rui Fu. (Huda Bashatah)

Jocelyn Pook, the music director and co-composer of this project, told Arab News that it was a thrill to work on “Nine Songs” because of the eclectic group of musicians from all over the world that joined in, as well as the juxtaposition of ancient and modern, of different Chinese and Western instruments, and AlUla.

“We’ve been devising the music together as a group, and it's been a very unusual process and kind of challenging, actually,” Pook told Arab News.

“We’ve got a Chinese dulcimer and a guqin and (an) extraordinary sort of array of percussion taiko drums, and a double bass, (an) extraordinary virtuoso violinist, Preetha, and harps — two harps — (a) Celtic and a gothic harp. It’s created this incredible landscape in the music, and I think it’s quite varied. And of course, Rui, with her extraordinary singing and range of vocal singing, which is sometimes very playful, sometimes quite traditional,” Pook added.

Spearheaded by the Royal Commission for AlUla, Fu was able to invite musicians from around the world from different cultures. There are two Chinese instrumentalists and collaborators from Japan, the UK, India, and the US.

“Nine Songs” is the inaugural activity of the Wadi AlFann’s season-opening, with temporary exhibitions, artist residencies, and symposiums planned. Five new commissioned artworks are due for completion in 2024.

Visit the AlUla and Wadi AlFann websites for more details.