Qatar’s cultural heritage on display throughout FIFA Arab Cup™
Throughout the FIFA Arab Cup 2021™, fans were treated to a series of cultural activations that showcased Qatar’s rich history and the diversity of its many communities. Organised by the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy (SC) and its partners, the activities formed a key part of the fan experience, which saw wide support for the 16 participating nations in tournament.
Activities commenced before the tournament kicked off along Doha’s iconic Corniche Street, which saw a number of performances, light shows and festivities taking place alongside the 11th annual Qatar International Food Festival (QIFF), a Qatar Tourism initiative that celebrates the country's diverse food, beverage and hospitality offerings. From 26 November until 3 December, more than 22 communities put on displays set against the city’s breathtaking skyline.
“The Arab Cup was an event that was embraced by a huge number of different communities across Qatar, and so it was the perfect opportunity to showcase Qatar’s beautiful culture and the many other cultures that call Qatar their home. Throughout the tournament, spectators enjoyed musical performances and traditional dances up and down the country - from metro stations to stadium precincts. That diversity of cultures and the range of amazing performances for fans to enjoy was a truly special aspect of our tournament,” said Khaled Al Suwaidi, the SC's Stakeholder Relations Senior Manager.
One of the key partners that delivered the wide array of activations throughout the FIFA Arab Cup™ was the Ministry of Culture, which put forth a series of cultural displays designed to highlight Qatar’s heritage to spectators, many of whom were visiting the country to attend the tournament.
"It was important for us to celebrate Qatari culture with our fellow Arabs at the tournament, and we look forward to sharing all the beautiful cultures of Qatar and this region when we host the World Cup in just under a year's time," said Sheikha Najla Al Thani, Director of Heritage and Identity Department at the Ministry of Culture.
“We are all proud of those stadiums whose design is inspired by Qatari heritage, and we renew our commitment to continue working with Qatar 2022 organisers to support local talent and cooperate across cultural sectors to host a historic version of the World Cup next year,” added Al Thani.
One of the most iconic performances took place at Al Bayt Stadium, which hosted both the opener and final of the FIFA Arab Cup™. The 60,000 seater, with its designed inspired by traditional tents used in Qatar and throughout the region came to life during the tournament with folkloric dances and games performed by the Al Khor Girls Center.
"The magnificent Al Bayt Stadium provided us with the perfect venue to showcase traditional Qatari games and folk dances. Our students were excited to join in this wonderful celebration that brought Arabs together and we look forward to taking part in the World Cup next year," said Jana’a Al Murakhi, Executive Director of Al Khor Girls Center at the Ministry of Youth and Sports.
In under one year, the FIFA World Cup™ will come to the Middle East and Arab world for the first time, allowing fans to learn more about Qatar’s signature hospitality and to embrace the region’s diverse cultures and musical traditions.
"The Arab Cup came to life through our musicians. Fans were treated to traditional artists from throughout the region, and we look forward to welcoming the world in 2022 and celebrating all the talent this region has to offer," said Khalid Al Salem, General Manager of the Musical Affairs Center at the Ministry of Culture.
The FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ is set to kick off on 21 November at Al Bayt Stadium, with the final match being played on 18 December at the iconic Lusail Stadium.