Taking place at the Al Maraya Arts Centre at the delightful Al Qasba arts and recreation area in Sharjah, Twinge Sharjah is going to be a hoot. Starting Saturday with a chat, reading and Q&A session with yours truly, the event stretches out all week and will see presentations, performances and displays from fifty artists.
Twinge Sharjah starts at 8pm on Saturday the 25th February and goes on until the 2nd March, with nightly events dedicated to literature, fashion, film, comedy, music and poetry.
It's a remarkable follow-on from the TwingeDXB event where Olives was 'formally' launched - the event perhaps reflects Sharjah's standing in the cultural space and certainly reflects a move forwards in terms of the Twinge format. It's all rather exciting, actually - it's certainly far removed from the UAE I came to and is part of a growing cultural landscape in the country that is actually quite breathtaking.
The full running order is here, over on the UAE Community Blog. It looks like I'm kicking the whole thing off, so no pressure there. Now I've got to select a reading for the event - and it's a horrible job. At TwingeDXB, I read the part of the novel where young Paul Stokes meets Gerald Lynch for the first time. Irish poet Frank Dullaghan read Lynch for me, because although I can do a passable Northern Irish accent for a line or two, I can't keep it up. This time I'm on my own - and I've got to find another scene that represents the book, has a beginning, middle and end and won't send the audience to sleep.I'm sure I'll survive.
Up there with me on the night on Saturday will be authors Abdulla Kassim and Noura Noman. It'll be nice to be part of an event on 'home turf' and I do look forward to seeing you there if you can make it!
(you can follow 'em on @TwingeSHJ)