Returning for another biennial celebration of diverse, innovative Arab art and creativity, the 2023 Shubbak Festival reaches beyond its London programme to take over the Lowry with two one-off performances on Fri 30 Jun and Sat 1 Jul.

Shubbak – ‘window’ in Arabic – is dedicated to expanding public access to contemporary Arab culture with an eclectic nationwide schedule which platforms trailblazing new creatives alongside established artists.

On Sat 1 Jul, renowned dancer Mohamed Toukabri presents his critically acclaimed show The Power (of) the Fragile, an immersive, uplifting meta-performance in which he invites his mother Latifa onstage in a deeply affecting reunion at once real and interpretive. After being apart for several years, they ‘rediscover’ one another through dance, and retread their lives and dreams as the borders between both characters blur in a flurry of breathtaking interconnected movement. Billed as ‘a tender portrait of a close relationship’, The Power (of) the Fragile explores parental dynamics, the act of leaving home, the spiritual sensation of both being and carrying weight, the inheritance of dreams and the fundamental right to navigate the world – and ourselves – freely.

The night before, Yasmeen Audisho Ghrawi’s poignant one-person ‘manifesto for dreamers’ From the Daughter of a Dictator offers a meditation on both the sorrow of displacement and the promise of a new tomorrow through an illuminating narrative tapestry, which features personal accounts of migration from Baghdad to Beirut and Berlin to Britain as part of a challenge to conventional Western perceptions of democracy. Using spoken word, whispers, song and motion, From the Daughter of a Dictator tells a complete, holistic story of upheaval ,trauma and hope with ‘a collage of fragmented images and anecdotes…converging into the body and voice of one person attempting to orient in a violently loud, crushing world’.

Both shows are on sale now. Get tickets for From the Daughter of a Dictator here, and for The Power (of) the Fragile here.


A Manchester Wire Partnership post
Fri 30 Jun - Sat 1 Jul, 8pm, The Lowry,
Pier 8, Salford Quays, Salford, M50 3AZ
, Tel: 0161 876 2000, £10-16.50
Wolf McFarlane
Published on:
Thu 29 Jun 2023