June 1, 2020

ADMAF Signs Historic Agreement with Paris Opera

In the picture Director Aurélie Dupont, Ambassador Ali bin Abdullah Al Ahmed, ADMAF Founder Huda Ibrahim Alkhamis – Picture by ADMAF

Thursday, 3 October 2019, Paris, France: Stéphane Lissner, Director of Opéra National de Paris (Paris Opera) and Founder of ADMAF and Artistic Director of the Abu Dhabi Festival, H.E. Huda Ibrahim Alkhamis, jointly signed a historic Letter of Cooperation (LoC) in the presence of H.E. Ali Abdullah Al Ahmed, UAE Ambassador to France and Aurélie Dupont, Director of Dance at the magnificent Palais Garnier in Paris.

This historic strategic partnership is the first for any international and Arab cultural organisation and will enhance the international cultural achievement and presence of Abu Dhabi and the UAE, by enabling both institutions to share experiences, identify and develop knowledge and broaden expertise. It will also enable co-productions, co-commissions and performances with which to create new dimensions of artistic collaboration while fostering development and growth of cultural and artistic works in Abu Dhabi Festival and beyond.

Speaking after the LoC signing ceremony, Founder Huda Alkhamis said: “The relationship between ADMAF and Paris Opera has always been strong and impactful, and the signing of this Letter of Cooperation between our two organisations will enable us to go on to even greater heights in identifying and developing activities that foster growth of cultural and artistic works, particularly with regards to our youth. Partnerships such as this serve to increase Abu Dhabi and the UAE’s presence on the world stage and strengthen cross-cultural understanding.”

Opéra National de Paris

Opéra National de Paris (Paris Opera) is the principal opera and ballet company of France and its roots can be traced back as far as 1661, with the founding of the Académie Royale de Danse (Royal Academy of Dance) by Louis XIV, with the purpose of training dancers and formalising choreographic art. Eight years later, in 1669, Louis XIV founded the Académie d’Opéra, and shortly thereafter was placed under the leadership of Jean-Baptiste Lully and officially renamed the Académie Royale de Musique, but continued to be known more simply as the Opéra.

Classical ballet as it is known today, arose within the Paris Opera as the Paris Opera Ballet and has remained an integral and important part of the company. Now officially known as the Opéra National de Paris, it mainly produces operas at its modern 2700-seat theatre Opéra Bastille which was commissioned by then President of France,François Mitterand, and opened in 1989. It also produces ballets and classical operas at the 1,970-seat Palais Garnier, which opened in 1875.

As well as running the two houses, the company employs a large number of permanent staff, including as orchestra of 170, a choir of 110 and the corps de ballet of 150. Each year, the Opéra presents about 380 performances of opera, ballet and other concerts, to a total audience of approximately 800,000 people.

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