The Short+Sweet Festival returns to Abu Dhabi for the third edition.

January 6, 2018
7 minutes read
The Short+Sweet Festival returns to Abu Dhabi for the third edition.

The Arts Center at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) is excited to host the internationally renowned Short+Sweet Festival. Showcasing a competition featuring 10 ten-minute plays and a Wildcard performance on Friday, January 19 and Saturday 20.

Staged over two days, Short+Sweet is a collection of plays that encompass a spectrum of genres. Each Short+Sweet event  spotlights locally based actors, writers, and directors, so the Abu Dhabi version will see a host of local talent staging their work.  And each festival has three clear goals::

  1. For the participants to have a positive experience
  2. For the audience to have a positive experience
  3. To create good theater

While this is only the third edition of the Abu Dhabi Short+Sweet competition, the global phenomenon started some 15 years ago in Sydney, Australia. Since its inception, it has grown while travelling the world and currently features in seven countries and 23 cities.

Those attending will gather in The Blue Hall, a beautiful and intimate multi-disciplinary space in The Arts Center and will have the chance to see two Top 10performances (ten, ten-minute shows), with a repeating line-up presented on both the Friday and Saturday. Short + Sweet Abu Dhabi will also present a Wildcard performance on Saturday, January 20th at 3pm, which sees groups of performers new to the stage, whose work is often more experimental, but nonetheless of equal standard to the Top 10 performances.

The competition is separated into two parts: the Judge’s Choice and the People’s Choice. Judges decide upon the best male and female actors, runner-up best actor and actress, best new talent, best writer, best director, best independent theatre company and best overall play.  For the People’s Choice, the audience receive a voting slip when they enter The  Blue Hall and are asked to vote for their favourite play by the end.

Festival Director of the 2018 Abu Dhabi edition, Zakaia Cvitanovich, spoke about the upcoming edition, saying: “Short+Sweet provides a wonderful opportunity for people to give writing, directing, or acting a go… whether you’re an experienced theatre practitioner or new to the world of theater, Short+Sweet has something for everybody.”

Bill Bragin, executive artistic director at The Arts Center at NYUAD, is eager to see what the UAE’s local talent has to offer, saying: “Our collaboration with Short + Sweet has created new relationships between The Arts Center and locally-based theater artists, and provides an important complement to our on-going series of visiting artists. We’re proud to offer our stage to artists from our own community. ”

Tickets will go on sale  Wednesday, January 3 at 3pm, with performances on Friday January 19 and Saturday 20 at 8pm, as well as the Wildcard performance on the Saturday January 20 at 3pm.

The Arts Center at NYUAD is an internationally renowned performing arts center that presents distinguished professional artists from around the world alongside student, faculty, and community productions.

Tickets are available now. For more information please visit: http://www.nyuad-artscenter.org

Follow @NYUADArtsCenter on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.




Angelique Kidjo’s Remain In Light

UAE Debut

Outdoor Concert

Saturday, Feb 3 @ 8pm

The East Plaza


Aakash Odedra – #JeSuis

World Premiere, Co-commissioned by The Arts Center

This event is part of the UK/UAE 2017 Year of Creative Collaboration led by the British Council

Contemporary dance

Wed – Fri, Feb 7, 8 & 9 @ 8pm &

Fri, Feb 9 @ 2pm

The Black Box

Ticketed event, admission details TBC

Kronos Quartet – Residency – 3 different performances in The Red Theater

  1. Kronos Quartet For the Future
    Featuring music from Fifty for the Future, Co-commissioned by The Arts Center
    Thursday, Feb 15 @ 8pm
  2. Around the World with Kronos
    Family concert
    Friday, Feb 16 @ 4pm
  3. Middle East Premiere of A Thousand Thoughts: a Live Documentary by Sam Green and Kronos Quartet, Co-commissioned by The Arts Center
    Music and live cinema
    Thursday, Feb 22 @ 8pm


Barzakh Festival (Note new dates and venue)

A Festival of World Music featuring:

47SOUL, Pedro Coquenão | Batida  – Wednesday, Feb 28 at 7:30pmRAMThe Ex + Fendika and Al Nuban Folklore Troupe –  Thursday, Mar 1 @ 7:30pm

The Red Theater


Imagine Science Abu Dhabi Film Festival

4th Annual Film Festival

Science and art collide

Wed – Sat, Mar 7 – 10

The Black Box


Ragamala Dance – Written in Water – Ranee Ramaswamy and Aparna Ramaswamy, Co-Artistic Directors

Middle East Premiere

Bharatanatyam dance with live music by Amir ElSaffar

Wednesday & Thursday,

Mar 21 & 22 @ 8pm

The Red Theater


Tania El Khoury – Gardens Speak

Middle East Premiere

Interactive sound installation | Performance

Friday – Tuesday, Apr 27 – May 1

The Red Theater

Shakespeare Theatre Company – Noura

Middle East Premiere

By Heather Raffo and Directed by Joanna Settle

Thursday, May 10 @ 8pm

Friday, May 11, @ 8pm

Saturday, May 12 @ 3pm

The Red Theater


Finally, through the duration of The Arts Center’s third season, Rooftop Rhythms, the Middle East’s longest running poetry open mic night produced by impresario Dorian “Paul D” Rodgers returns for a sixth season with events hosted on campus at the end of every month on Fridays between September 2017 – April 2018.

  • Open Mic Night – Friday, Jan 26
  • Slam Competition and Open Mic – Friday, Feb 23
  • 6th Anniversary Show / Open Mic Night – Friday, Mar 30
  • Grand Slam Finale Competition / Season Closing – Friday, Apr 27


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