There are so many cultural events in the UAE… from catching a musical to checking out contemporary art…

With a brand new month comes brand new cultural events in the UAE to check out, and culture vultures, we’ve rounded up plenty to keep you busy in January.

Here’s our pick of the top cultural events in the UAE in January 2020 

Performance: Al Raheel / Departure

Catch this spoken word performance by Reem Almenhali and Joanna Settle. It combines English and Arabic poetry against a backdrop of projected images and choreographed movement. These three shows headline the pre-festival programme for the annual Abu Dhabi Festival.

The Black Box, The Arts Center, New York University Abu Dhabi, Saadiyat Island. Jan 24 and 25, 8pm and 2pm matinee Tel: (02) 6286868. nyuad.nyu.edu

Musical: Broken Wings

An autobiographical account of Lebanese author Kahlil Gibran’s first love, Broken Wings is a musical adaptation of the iconic poet’s 1912 masterpiece. This moving new musical is written by Middle Eastern duo Nadim Naaman and Dana Al Fardan. It’s directed by Bronagh Lagan and produced by Ali Matar with orchestrations by Joe Davison.

Dubai Opera, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Boulevard, Downtown Dubai. Jan 17 and 18, 8pm and 3pm matinee. Tel: (04) 4408888. dubaiopera.com

Exhibition: Such a Morning & The Sovereign Forest

Amar Kanwar is one of India’s most critically-acclaimed contemporary artists and he’ll be showing two projects across the UAE this month. In both he explores politics, power, violence, and justice, through poetic films and multimedia works.

New York University Abu Dhabi. nyuad-artgallery.org
Ishara Art Foundation, Alserkal Avenue, Dubai. ishara.org

Exhibition: Sujata Bajaj

This abstract artist creates flamboyant and luminous works with vibrant colours and compelling lines and shapes. Her inspiration comes from tribal art and ancient symbology and she works in a variety of media, including painting and sculpture.

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Alliance Française, Street 18, Oud Metha, Dubai. From Jan 15, Sun to Wed 9am to 8pm, Thur and Fri 9am to 5pm. Tel: (04) 3358712. afdubai.org

Exhibition: Emanations

Drawing on Iran’s cultural heritage, Reza Derakshani uses luxurious materials upon his canvases, such as gold paste, to convey a sense of tradition. This is his first UAE exhibition since 2013.

Leila Heller Gallery, Unit 80, Alserkal Avenue, Street 8, Al Quoz, Dubai. Until March, Sun to Thur 10am to 7pm. Sat 11am to 7pm. Tel: (04) 3216942 leilahellergallery.com

Workshop: Musical Lines

Held inside the calligraphy exhibition Music and Letters, participants of this workshop will learn how to combine musical notes with Arabic calligraphy to create visual music and lines upon fabric.

Sharjah Calligraphy Museum, Calligraphy Square, Heart of Sharjah. Jan 29, Workshop is free for participants over 18 years old. Prior booking is necessary.  Tel: (06) 5694561. sharjahmuseums.ae