15 Years of organized cultural life in Abu Dhabi
The Armenian Cultural Association (ACA) is the major body that deals with cultural affairs in the Armenian Community in Abu Dhabi. It has been formed in 1989, by some prominent members who felt the need for organized cultural life.
The Association proved to be successful in inviting many Armenian performers (individuals and groups) from Armenia. Some of these groups consisted of more than 40 participants.
By forging a fruitful cooperation with the cultural authorities in the capital (represented by the “Cultural Foundation”), ACA managed, since its foundation, to include Armenian performances in the agenda of almost every cultural season. The latest activity was the performance of the State Chamber Orchestra of Yerevan (comprising of 33 musicians and three young tenors), under the baton of Maestro Vardan Hakopyan, on 16th of February, 2004, in Abu Dhabi, in cooperation with the Abu Dhabi Concert Committee.
The admission to the activities of ACA has been usually free. Thousands of individuals, from dozens of nationalities, have attended the performances. The main objective of the Association has been to attract the local and expatriate population of the United Arab Emirates to Armenian art and culture. The “Cultural Foundation” was hesitant in the beginning to deal with the Association, but seeing the professional level of the invited groups from Armenia, the doubt turned to full-fledged approval and appreciation. Now the management of the “Cultural Foundation” itself asks the Association to invite Armenian individuals or groups before publishing the agenda of the coming season.
On the 15th anniversary of the Association, there is an initial thought about preparing a publication that will gather all evidences, articles, testimonies, facts, photos, etc related to the fifteen years of continuous presence in the cultural arena in Abu Dhabi. We wish that the commemorative publication will be available to the public if not this year at least in the next year (Armenian organizations are known in publishing anniversaries far later than the indicated year on the front cover). The material found in the custody of some of the members should not be ignored and it must be documented as soon as possible. The same thought applies to the Council of the Armenian Community, whose 20th Anniversary in 2001 passed without any significant publication or documenting effort. Memory inside the brain cells is not sufficient for passing the rich experience to the new generations.
We congratualte the Armenian Cultural Association and wish all success to its members (by the way, it is time also to include new members and capabilities in the executive body of the Association). AZAD-HYE.