The Arts Center at NYU Abu Dhabi announces two days of boundary-crossing global music

Dina El Wadidi and Samora Pinderhughes

A concentrated weekend of performances will feature eclectic music from genre-defying bands

The Arts Center at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) has announced three visionary artists performing on Friday, 1 and Saturday, 2 March from 7.30pm at The Red Theater.

The weekend of music has been created by The Arts Center as a meeting place of musical streams that cross diverse cultures, with global-minded musicians reflecting varied influences that bring the contemporary and the traditional together.

The result is a boundary-pushing lineup that continues the season’s theme of Arts at the Center; putting art at the centre of community, conversation, beauty, celebration, contemplation, education, and inspiration.

A night souk on both nights will be open to the public, with 40 retail vendors offering locally made artisan products, including handmade soaps, candles, local artwork, jewelry, home décor, and pottery.

The first day welcomes Dina El Wedidi (Egypt), and Samora Pinderhughes (United States). The concert is set to capture the rich melodic culture of Egyptian music alongside the harmonically sophisticated sounds of American jazz mixed with r&b and post-rock, in an intimate, cross-boundary double bill.

El Wedidi’s innovative approach towards music has earned her profound status on the regional and global stage. Her pieces are influenced by Egyptian folk music and Arab poetry, resonating with the beauty of cultural diversity. Samora Pinderhughes is a pianist, vocalist, and composer who commits himself to making art in his everyday life.

The second day, March 2, features Emel Mathlouthi (Tunisia). The show  will spotlight  the groundbreaking vision of the iconic Tunisian artist in an exciting performance ranging from folk music, to rock, and electronic, all in one mélange.

Emel is a songwriter, composer, guitarist, and singer who brings a powerful and fresh sound to Tunisian music. Endowed with an outstanding voice, her early career drew comparisons to one of the most celebrated singers in the history of the Arab world, Fairouz.

Commenting on the lineup, The Arts Center Executive Artistic Director Bill Bragin said: “This weekend of music continues The Arts Center’s tradition of highlighting visionary artists whose work defies easy categorization. Dina El Wedidi and Emel Mathlouthi are two of Arab alternative music’s most visionary artists who create music that explores the borders and connection points between styles. Samora similarly does the same with jazz, R&B and post-rock, with a deep vulnerability and social conscience. We are excited to see how this collision of influences and styles breaks new ground for audiences and artists alike.”

In addition to their groundbreaking performances, Emel Mathlouthi, Samora Pinderhughes, and Dina El Wedidi will each offer workshops for local musicians and songwriters, helping to impart their sense of musical adventurousness.


Workshop | Music Matters with Emel Mathlouthi

Thursday, 29 February at 6.30pm, The Arts Center

Join Emel Mathlouthi, songwriter, composer, guitarist, and singer, in this interactive workshop to explore the importance of music as an act of art and social change. By making music, we can draw transformation and innovation for generations to come and create music that is unique and profound.


 Masterclass | Approach to Composing and Creating Music with Samora Pinderhughes

Saturday, 2 March at 12-3pm, The Arts Center

Samora Pinderhughes at NYUAD Arts Centre

Samora Pinderhughes and his ensemble lead a communal workshop session in which Samora will discuss his approach to composing and creating music and lyrics, and then work with participants on refining their compositions and concepts. Emphasis will be on song structure, detail in both composing and writing music, and creating music that speaks to both personal and sociopolitical realities.


Workshop | The Creative Blocks of Music with Dina El Wedidi

Saturday, 2 March at 3pm, The Arts Center

Dina ElWedidi at NYUAD Arts Centre

Dina El Wedidi aims to explore the relationship between music, self, common struggles, and more. Working with the idea that music is innately human, this workshop is an invitation to get to know each other through our stories, ideas, sounds, and our art. El Wedii will delve into questions such as: what does identity mean to you? What is the importance of having your own sound? What do genres mean to you? What is a creative block, and how can we overcome it? Participants are invited to bring their own instruments to the workshop.

Don’t miss these fantastic artists at this wonderful celebration of music with The Arts Center at NYUAD over 1 and 2 March. Make sure to secure your ticket today by visiting nyuad-artscenter.org



1-2 March


The Red Theater


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Image source NYUAD Arts Centre

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