Book lovers, rejoice: Hay Festival is coming to Abu Dhabi
Reading and writing enthusiasts in the UAE will be in for an edutainment treat when the festival of literature, ideas and arts comes to Abu Dhabi next year. Hay Festival Abu Dhabi will take place on February 24-27, 2020, at Manarat Al Saadiyat and other venues across the city.
From the beaches of Cartagena de Indias in Colombia to the cities of Beirut in Lebanon and Segovia in Spain, the Hay Festival has for decades brought together writers, readers and thinkers from different cultures, languages and walks of life.
Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance, said the festival celebrates the productive collaboration between the peoples of the UAE and the United Kingdom. It will remind “us all of Abu Dhabi’s great and growing position as an international centre of knowledge, culture and the arts”, he said.
“The festival embodies the values of tolerance as an essential tool to bringing and keeping people around the world together in harmony,” said Sheikh Nahyan. “The UAE is a global society, founded on the values of tolerance and coexistence. We recognise the importance of sharing ideas, education and cross-cultural interactions, for which Hay Festival is celebrated worldwide. We look forward to welcoming audiences young and old to four days of invigorating conversations, opening minds and enhancing understanding.”
Peter Florence, Hay Festival director, said the festival will be a showcase for “great writing from across the Arab world”, a platform for inspiring voices from many languages and “a meeting place for readers and dreamers”.
The festival will host thematic debates and literary interviews. It will closely collaborate with local schools to deliver educational programmes during school hours.
Since 1987, Hay Festival has programmed 125 festivals globally, attracting more than 4.5 million people to events in 30 locations.