Ambassador of Bahrain Presents Superb Cultural Fusion
By C. Naseer Ahmad
The newly arrived Ambassador of Bahrain His Excellency Abdulla Bin Rashid Al Khalifa hosted a large number of diplomats, civic leaders, business executives and academics at his beautiful residence in McLean, Virginia. The event was cosponsored by the Embassy Series, which aims to unite people through musical diplomacy.
The wonderful event appealed to the distinguished audience with many tastes and intellectual persuasions. “Virginia is for lovers” is the message that attracts visitors from all over the world to marvel the rich cultural and historic heritage of the Commonwealth. Tucked away in a scenic part of Northern Virginia, the diplomatic residence provided the perfect setting for the memorable event dubbed as a “Celebration of Senses”.
The event was an opportunity to let “East” meet the “West”, as the “North” and “South” got along just fine. The Embassy staff seems to have prepared well and performed flawlessly. It was bound to happen because Bahrain – hosting the US Naval fleet – is strategically situated and is adapting to the contemporary challenges.
Discussing history and culture, the Embassy informs us that the Kingdom of Bahrain which dates back to the Dilmum period is “home to an array of religions, cultures, and customs. Bahrain prides itself on its tolerant and inclusive environment,” and “has become a strategic regional and financial hub for economic diversification and trade opportunities to occur.”
On the subject of “Women Empowerment,” participants in this important event learned that under the vision of His Royal Highness His Majesty King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa “the empowerment of women has become a fundamental development that the Kingdom aims to continuously advance upon.”
So it was propitious that the evening began with appreciation artwork in the diplomatic residence. Beautiful paintings by Shaikha Hala bint Mohammed Al Khalifa made a great impression on the minds of this august gathering. Artwork by Zuhair Al Saeed is “replete with traces from primal form and oscillating movements,” it is said. “We have to learn how to stay positive, because life is all about hope, and those who lose hope in life will be forever incomplete in life,” is an unmistakable message associated with Zuhair Al Saeed’s artwork.
Guests were serenaded by the music of a very young and talented musician from Bahrain – Isa AlNajem. The gifted and prize winning musician learned from his father how to play the “Oud” – a traditional Middle Eastern instrument. Isa AlNajem’s pursuit of excellence has taken him many places around the world.
Bassam Al Alawi, a self-taught Chef and Polymath, informed, entertained and provided delicious food – in small bits -for the event. As owner of Darseen Café, Bassam Al Alawi is said to approach “cooking with an eclectic and modern twist to contemporary flavors, focusing more on the coming together of beautiful combinations, that might not be seemingly obvious, to create soulful food.”
Just like the talented artists and the Chef, it took a lot of creativity and imagination by Bahrain’s Ambassador, his beautiful wife and efficient staff to organize a marvelous event that blended many cultures and tastes on a beautiful evening in the diplomatic surroundings of Washington metropolitan area.