Ali Institute of Education organized Pakistan’s first-ever 4-day “Children’s Shakespeare Festival” from November 3 to November 6, 2008. This Festival was organized to promote Arts education, and learning through the Arts, in Pakistan.
At least 3,000 children, families, and teachers visited the Festival during its 4-day run. The management of the Festival was overwhelmed by the interest and support from schools and theatre-lovers to this first initiative.
The Festival consisted on school performances of this year’s two selected plays, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and “Othello”, as well as sonnet and soliloquy reading competitions, Shakespeare film screenings, Shakespeare-themed art installations around the nine-acre campus, and a poster competition for children of all ages. The quality of children’s work and the sheer joy of the audiences ensured that such events are in high demand in Pakistan.
The Shakespeare Festival at the Ali Institute is the means by which children will be able to develop a broader view of the world, learn to understand texts and read more, and develop a greater understanding of human nature…and have fun at the same time!
The feedback of the visitors to the performances and the Festival art has been very encouraging. It seems that there is a great need for the creation of such events in order to establish Arts education in Pakistani society..