Art is one of the most universal of languages because it encompasses music, literature, visual arts and links everyone globally. Most of our histories are seeped with artistic expressions and it was one of the most profound factors of our cultural evolution. As we progressed through the decades, a lot of those values began to disappear and much of our artistic identity evaporated, slowly the audiences it began to attract dwindled and now we are left with a modernized version, yet pale imitation of art.

Making way for trendier entertainment options, the current culture has become too futuristic and appeals to a select group of people. With increased emphasis on technology; cultural activities like calligraphy, magic shows, classical music, painting and letter writing that were ingrained in generations before, have now have become a thing of the past. There is a subtle science and magic behind each of these and reviving the beauty of those in Dubai are 5 great endeavors:

The Illusionists 1903

Magic is one of the most enticing of arts that draws in an audience across age groups. A stunning yet antiquing form that is slowly becoming more commercialized, the illusionists 1903 have resurrected several classic acts to intrigue the Dubai audience at the World Trade center. While some performances were truly captivating and featured a variety of acts spanning puppetry, clairvoyance, magic cards, mind reading, the illusion of flying and psychic doves, others left viewers expecting a little more. Traditional performances still do have mass appeal, however, adding a certain variety and unique spin would have definitely upped the experience. 

The biggest attraction was the resurrection of the Golden Age of magic, as eight international magicians brought to stage great illusions and transported the audience back to a well-loved and deeply missed era. As the curtains raised, a sense of mystic filled the air and the spotlight hall with rows of people were mesmerized and filled with a simple question “How did they do that?” throughout the event. A particular stand-out act was the timetraveller, who walked into a time machine on stage and reappeared moments later at the other end of the hall, amidst the audience.

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Left to Right: Thommy, Vikita Shahani: Editor-In-Chief of Rendezvous With V, Amelie

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Left to Right: Thommy, Director of Importrade – Anil Shahani, Amelie

While in a 5 minute conversation with Showman Mark Kalin and Conjuress Jinger Leigh backstage, I had some great insights into the conceptualization of the acts, new trends in this art field and a piece of magical advice for all of you. Below is the recording and insider’s scoop: 

The Man in D-Major

The Man in D-Major is a documentary that focuses on Riad Kudsi, the Director and Conductor of Emirates Youth Symphony Orchestra in Media City, Dubai. Overtime classical music has begun to die out and with each generation of kids obsessing over the young, trendy hip-hop culture, the importance of this art form has been diminished. Shedding light onto this problem is one of the key focuses as the documentary features young children learning to play the violin, chello and piano and provides perspective on how it helps them in other aspects of their lives. For Riad Kudsi, a Czech national of Syrian origin, the journey to get to where he is today was a very difficult one, but his passion for pursuing a music teaching career was so strong that he managed to surpass each obstacle that was thrown his way. Mahek Punjabi is the producer and editor of the documentary and she juggles strategic scheduling, planning, research, and editing that will enable the documentary to reach its full potential. It is directed by Luma Kudsiova, the daughter of the legendary Riad Kudsi, who has a creative vision and personal connection to the main character. The director of photography is Ahmad Sahmoud, who skillfuly captures the true essence of the story. Their aim is to ultimately educate the youth about the importance of classical music, in a culture where newer forms of music are appreciated more and the beauty of playing classical instruments is forgotten.

Quality over Quantity Journalism

Journalism over the years has often been dwindled down to spreading content that generates likes and shares instead of focusing on articles that writers truly believe in. With the increase in number of media channels available comes the need to populate it with more and more content, at times without judging its quality or impact. Soon social media and front pages of publications began to feature fashion models and movie stars, while online memes, viral videos, gossip and scandal were more actively circulated. Articles have overtime been ‘tailored’ to become clickbait to generate views and followers, while social media has become a barometer of popularity. 

Difficult as it may be to believe, there is still mass appeal for well thought out and responsibly written articles and here at Rendezvous With V, that’s exactly the demographic we cater to. A constant passion of mine is to address global issues, spark discussions and engage with next-generation thinkers with every topic I address. Every article is thoroughly researched and can take upto 2 weeks or more to fully edit and post live. More importantly, our constant mission is to amplify important messages while working with key companies and individuals making a powerful contribution to society.

At Rendezvous With V, we are reviving the emphasis on quality vs. quantity journalism and creating a legacy. I hope I can help eradicate several global problems that affects so much of the population by raising awareness, discussing and engaging with all of you. 

Letters of Love

The entire generation from the 1990s onwards may have never experienced the delights of letter writing, a practice that has almost disappeared after the rise of the technological era. I’m not just talking about writing good wishes on a birthday card … I mean actually writing a letter, putting it into an envelope, posting it and waiting for a reply – the snail mail sort of way. Sounds difficult to phantom right? Who has time for that, when you can shoot a message on WhatsApp and get the blue tick notification. Sounds familiar?

Letter writing used to be an art and was one of the most cherished experiences of the decades before. Reviving this is Chandni Sawlani from InjoyGiving, who brought together an entire group of enthusiasts to write ‘letters of love’ to breast cancer survivors along with composing words of inspiration to individuals that could use the positive motivation. We were part of this event and spent the afternoon immersed in great conversation, mutual goals of a better future and meeting passionate individuals.

Letters of Love at Pantry Café-36

Left to Right: Chandni Sawlani, Vikita Shahani: Editor-In-Chief of Rendezvous With V, Sharon Monterio

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There is great value in being immersed in the arts, it’s an enriching hobby that builds character, changes perspectives, immerses you in tradition and culture, teaches appreciation and most importantly, helps people disconnect from technology which has evidently governed our lives. Do remember that Facebook and other forms of social media is only a highlight reel and gives you the illusion of building relationships, nothing beats actually picking up a phone or being with someone in person. So go for it, this Diwali promise to take up a new art form, bring your friends along and dive right in, we’d love to hear how it has impacted your life – so feel free to send in your story to rendezvouswithv@hotmail.com

As always, we enjoy extending opportunities for all of you to get involved and naturally today is no different. So before we leave off, today’s opportunity is for philanthropists that want to leave their mark on the world. Send us an email with your charity idea, that can help bring a smile to people’s faces, engage the community and is centered around an activity that can be easily organized. This does not need to be about raising financial aid but rather is more about bringing society a little closer. We will award the most deserving suggestion a chance to make that a possibility and will personally share your idea with InjoyGiving. 

Until we rendezvous again,

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