x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Suspense rises as Prince of Poets begins search for champion bard

The award-winning TV show began airing last night with a revised format that pits 20 poets against each other in a more improvisation-centred contest.

Hassan Baeiti of Syria, centre, celebrates after winning the Prince of Poets television contest last year in Abu Dhabi. The fourth season of the show kicks off with 20 contestants.
Hassan Baeiti of Syria, centre, celebrates after winning the Prince of Poets television contest last year in Abu Dhabi. The fourth season of the show kicks off with 20 contestants.

The award-winning TV show Prince of Poets began airing last night - with repeated episodes - amid high anxiety that has already seen one competitor thrown out.

Three episodes of the audition stage will air before the fourth season kicks off with 20 poets.

This season has seen several changes. Poets will be evaluated on improvised poems in addition to those prepared in advance.

"We are trying to revive improvised poetry, which has been ignored lately," said one of the judges, Dr Ali bin Tamim.

He said improvised poetry helps the judges evaluate the quick wit of the poet.

"We also want to show that improvised Arabic poetry is not impossible," he added.

Five poets will be featured in each episode, in contrast to previous seasons where seven took part. "The new procedures of the show will give more time for each poet to express himself," said Sultan al Amimi, the director of the Poetry Academy at Abu Authority for Culture and Heritage (Adach) and member of the organising committee.

The number of judges has also been reduced from five to three to give a chance for more activities during the episodes.

The jury consists of Dr bin Tamim from the UAE, Dr Salah Fadhl from Egypt and Dr Abdul Malik Murtad from Algeria.

The show was initiated in 2007 by Adach.

 

hdajani@thenational.ae