ARAB TIMES, MONDAY, AUGUST 16, 2010 27 High note Cezary’s Picks Sweden, country of tolerance Music of ‘spiritual’ silence and peace By Cezary Owerkowicz like shrines, theaters, academies, uni- Special to the Arab Times versities, libraries and so on. In most cases it is their patronage of art, edu- I am sending my best greetings to my friends in Kuwait on the occa- sion of the Holy month of Ramadan. cation and science, more than mili- tary or political achievements that their names live on. Ramadan Kareem. I wish the holy The Gustavian Opera was commis- month brings you good health and sioned by King Gustav III, a strong helps you reflect on life. adherent of the ideal of enlightened Quite often people react for special absolutism and as such was a great events with the exclamatory ‘WOW!’ patron of the arts. Construction However, at times when the feeling is began in 1770 and the theater inaugu- too overwhelming and the beauty or rated in 1782. The building was very other qualities of the object you are imposing with its central Corinthian beholding is far beyond what is tetra-style portico supporting four expected, the reaction is just silence. statues and topped by the royal Silence comes with respect. crown. The four-tiered auditorium Meaningful silence, of course, is like was oval in shape and had excellent that. acoustics and sight lines. The sump- While I was in Northern Europe, I tuous foyer contained medallions and chanced upon such beautiful cre- pilasters. ations of God that made me speech- However, the royal theatre was the less. In the last two weeks, I traveled place where the king met his fate. to Scandinavian countries and During a masquerade in March, enjoyed the wonderful natural beauty 1792, he was shot by his assassin and of the place. The landscapes are filled he breathed his last 7 days later. The with an almost spiritual silence. I event inspired the famous opera by have already told you about my expe- Giuseppe Verdi ‘Un Ballo on riences in Norway and Finland. And Maschera’ (The Masquerade Ball). the two remaining countries at the However, the murdered king’s son, bottom of the Gustav IV Adolf, wasn’t a fan of Peninsula are opera and never liked to attend the Sweden and performances. Denmark. King Oscar II built and opened the S w e d e s , new opera building. It is a majestic Scandinavians in neo-classical building with a magnifi- general, have a cent gold foyer and elegant marbled brave Viking tra- staircase leading to a three-tiered audi- dition. Vikings torium, which was smaller than the were born travel- Old Theatre. It presently seats 1,200 ers. They discov- Owerkowicz people. The opera was inaugurated ered new lands with the original, native Swedish Dr Sabah Al-Momin feeding bottle milk to cloned ‘Naeemi’ sheep. (including America, far before opera composed by Franz Berwalds. Columbus did it). They were very It, however, had a typical Italian good fighters and artful merchants. sounding title: ‘Estrella de Soria’. Their exploits of the sea can be wit- That theatre has a tradition: most Pioneers of Kuwait nessed in their museums: from productions are sung in the original ancient Viking ships to the huge languages with Swedish subtitles. Royal Vasa ship carrying 64 canons. A Swedish King built it during the Nowadays, the opera also serves the Swedish society as the University First female scientist in Kuwait war with Poland. For Poland’s good College of Opera. Opera Department luck, this mighty ship putatively a educates singers, tutors and opera symbol of military glory, sank on a voyage from Stockholm. Orchestra The heart of Sweden, Stockholm, directors. It integrates vocal and musical study with physical and dra- matic training. NB: Let me remind you that we Dr Sabah, a modern role model is a wonderful city made of innumer- hosted in Kuwait several Swedish This is the fourth in a series of articles tee the animal will survive. tions for local problems. dreams. able islands, with rich tradition, artists of international acclaim. on Dr Sabah H. Al-Momin, a Kuwaiti When Dr Sabah performed it successful- As project manager she has been leading More than in any other times in human including architecture and music. Among them was a professional male pioneer in genetic engineering – Editor ly it made a sensation because it was the her team in developing and applying DNA history faith is needed in a world of fast NB: Musical instruments and sculp- choir, Orphei Drangar. first cloning experiment ever tried in the fingerprinting in Zubaid, a priced fish changes that make people bewildered, ❑ ❑ ❑ region. north of the Arabian Gulf, and the DNA afraid and uncertain. tured figures of musicians adorned Ensembles Vasa Royal flagship as can be seen in By Lidia Qattan She divided the forming embryo (when and fingerprinting of Shrimp in the Gulf Dr Sabah’s message of faith is particu- One of the top ranking and best- of about eight cells or little more) into four region to improve the quality and stock larly needed in Kuwait to overshadow the the museum. Nowadays music only known ensembles in the world is Special to the Arab Times serves peace there. parts and inseminated the surrogate moth- preservation. widespread fear and uncertainty that is ABBA. They shot to fame after win- er, who survived and brought forth the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra is new when seen from the light of the country’s long history. It ning the Eurovision Song Contest in 1974 which sold a total 380 million A fter the liberation while her people returned home, Dr Sabah started work- ing on her thesis (“Production of desired result. Dr Sabah Al-Momin’s success in her Other projects involve the development of specific DNA probes. For instance of the Brucella’s fingerprinting, a microbe affect- crippling the nation. Dr Sabah Al-Momin is part of the young generation; she grew up at a time of phe- records. It has made them the second- first cloning experiment got people with ing animals, especially sheep with the so was founded in 1902 as the most successful group ever, after Recombinant Rubella Virus Antigens”) nomenal changes in her country when the Stockholm Concert Society. (For me determined to cover the loss of timing prized animals enthusiastically seeking to called Maltese fever or Brucellosis that can spirit of her people was buoyant and eager ‘The Beatles.’ They continued to sell clone their animals, but when she present- also infect humans. it is somehow equal to Kuwait 2 to 3 million records every year. forced on her by the invasion. for change; eager for a new life, for a new Chamber Philharmonic established That same year (1991) she was back ed them with the photos of the whole pro- Train era in their country. They are still remembered for their cedure and the risk involved for the animal, for the classical music concert sea- musical ‘Mamma Mia’. home with her PhD in Genetic Molded by hardship when the oil rev- Engineering, she was the first female sci- they quickly changed their mind. By the simple investigation of the DNA son). The orchestra became a perma- Concerts accidentally take place at in a blood sample it is now possible to enues entered the equation of their econo- nent ensemble in 1914 and since entist in Kuwait, if not in the Middle East Incidentally after that operation she my the people knew exactly how to take the Stockholm City Hall, the place of became a vegetarian. quickly disclose the presence of this 1926 it moved to the Stockholm the royal banquets during the Nobel to graduate in this field. advantage of new possibilities and created microbe. Concert Hall. Since 1937, it has also Prize ceremonies. I know it from a At the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Course To enhance the production of prized ani- a golden era, in which even the fine arts been serving as the Swedish Radio personal experience. In 1970, I had Research (KISR) she started working Yet more enthusiastic in her work she made their début and prospered. Orchestra, broadcasting regular con- right-away – participating in establishing mals, especially of the Naeemi sheep, Dr the great opportunity of playing sought to deepen her knowledge and in Sabah established the genetics and Embryo As long as faith in people was alive and certs from their home. The philhar- Chopin one evening there. I can’t specialized laboratories in the field, train- September that year (1994) she took anoth- vibrant, Kuwait was a beacon of culture monic acquired its royal name in ing fresh graduates the basics (practically transfer laboratories, to train young gradu- judge my own concert but the banquet er training course in Embryo micro-manip- ates for embryo manipulation and transfer. and achievements, a shining example 1992 when it began to enjoy the was perfect. The corovode (pageant) the a.b.c.) of genetic engineering, dealing ulator application and envied by others. patronage of the Royal Family. with local problems and finding solutions Also part of her job is giving courses on of waiters dressed in tuxedos stepped use at Niko Co, in molecular biology techniques and DNA From the eighties, terrorists attacks in The orchestra participates annually down from two oppositely placed for them. Japan. Kuwait shattered that feeling of security in the Nobel Prize ceremony, which fingerprinting. staircases in total darkness. Flames in Projects At her return from Apparently women are more enthusias- people had been enjoying. is an international event. It also takes the darkness were dancing as small Japan she set to estab- As the bug of uncertainty began to gain part in the Polar Prize for Music cel- She became a project leader and the tic than men in this field, for most of her volcanoes, giving the effect of Arctic principle investigator of several scientific lish the Genetic students are women. a hold on the nation, it changed people’s ebration, which is a respectable, light. It was extremely impressive. E n g i n e e r i n g way of thinking and their behavior and that important regional event. Other than projects, the first of which was the manip- To those who think genetic engineering Scandinavia appreciates modesty, ulation of sheep embryo invitro to improve Department at the is too difficult, she constantly reminds affected the whole tenor of life in the coun- regular concert seasons, it also organ- sincerity and a friendly attitude to life KISR, with the collab- try. izes two annual festivals: the the reproduction of prized local animals, them that nothing is impossible, that they and nature. Be it animals, humans or “the Naeemi sheep.” oration of her col- can make it if they put their mind to it. The Iraqi invasion was the coup de Stockholm International Composer plants. league, a young scien- grace, the final blow that triggered the Festival and Composer Weekend, Unlike those of Australian and other Lidia Qattan Her main objective is to inculcate self- Sweden is a country of tolerance. sheep producing more than one lamb per tist specialized in a confidence in her trainees to develop their transformation. held in May, focusing on a contem- As far as I know many people fleeing branch related to Dr Sabah saw it happening, she herself porary Swedish composer. year and often have twins, the Naeemi’s full potentials, while nurturing the faith in different kinds of oppression in their reproduction is limited to once a year, sel- genetic engineering. a purpose that spurs their enthusiasm. became affected by the same bug but strug- Royal Swedish Opera has a much native lands found in Sweden not The new department involves a lot of gled to regain a hold on her belief. longer tradition. Its building lies in dom it produces twins. Faith is a formidable tool; it transforms only an asylum but also an equal, In 1994, from April to July Dr Sabah work, but it gives her the subtle satisfaction the individual’s outlook on life and unlocks Her personal struggle is reflected in her the center of Stockholm, on the honest chance to live, study and of accomplishment that makes her happy, whole endeavor that makes her a living Eastern side of Gustav Adolf Torg was in Australia for a course in IDF potentials he or she is not even aware of. work. Everyone knows it, and this (Invitro Fertilization) at the CSIRO. enthusiastic and creative. Faith created great civilization, it example of a faith in an objective. In her (Square). The opera was founded by aspect of Sweden is widely appreciat- Working in close cooperation with the work and through her dedication to her job King Gustav III and its first ever per- Embryo manipulation and transfer in enabled humanity to reach for the stars, it ed. I’ve seen people of different cul- sheep and mice is a delicate and complex Agricultural, Fishery and Animal Welfare is the secret of every successful individual she found the redemption of her soul and formance was given as far back as tures and races there and they all Authority many projects have become fea- the freedom of her spirit. 1773. This was also the first native operation involving (GA) general anesthe- and of the greatness of every nation. It is by looked happy. sible, especially those dealing with solu- speaking opera performance in sia; it is a risky procedure with no guaran- faith that humanity reaches the impossible To be continued I am writing about this in the Sweden. (Opera then was mainly per- beginning of Ramadan as a reminder formed in Italian language, recog- for myself and a proposal for reflec- disaster or civil unrest, or inform Canadians of hotel, i.e. name of the hotel, street and street presented personally by the applicants. nized for a long time as ‘the only lan- tion for you. Are we always steadfast a family emergency at home. The Embassy of no., zip code and city Information on visa requirements and appli- guage of opera’.) The first performances were given in our principles that we proclaim? Aren’t we demanding patience, click Canada encourages all Canadian citizens to register online through the Government of medical travel insurance. The processing time is 3 working days for cation forms can also be found on our website: www.kuwait.diplo.de. All information is also at the Royal Palace. The first opera understanding and tolerance from Canada Travel Website at www.voyage.gc.ca. Kuwaiti nationals. provided by an automatic answering service house was built and opened in 1782. others? But have we ever thought The Canadian Embassy in Abu Dhabi pro- Please be advised that non-Kuwaiti appli- which can be reached by phone at 252 08 27 The building served the whole centu- about how much we give to others Embassies vides visa and immigration services to resi- cants might be asked to provide additional doc- ext. 15 (for English) and ext. 14 (for Arabic). ry and at the end of the 19th century dents of Kuwait. Individuals who are interested uments and that the processing time takes a Please also note that the Embassy will nei- these things? Continued from Page 26 minimum of ten to fourteen days. was replaced by a new one. Both in visiting, working or immigrating to Canada ther issue nor accept Tax Free Forms for claim- Ramadan Kareem! are invited to visit the website of the Canadian The Embassy of the Federal Republic of ing tax refund for items bought in Germany buildings were called ‘The Royal Opera’ officially, however unofficial- ❑ ❑ ❑ of Canada is located at Villa 24, Al-Mutawakel Embassy to the UAE at www.UAE.gc.ca. Germany will only accept visa applications which and exported to Kuwait. Before checking in Editor’s Note: Cezary Owerko- St, Block 4 in Da’aiyah. Please visit our web- ❑ ❑ ❑ are handed in personally by the applicant or your luggage and leaving Germany, kindly ly they were known and recognized site at www.Kuwait.gc.ca. through an approved travel agency. Visa applica- wicz is the chairman of the Kuwait approach the customs office at the airport or at as ‘The Gustavian Opera’ and ‘The The Embassy of Canada is open from 07:30 German Embassy visa notice: The tions handed in by messengers, service staff (e.g. the border and have your tax free forms Oscarian Opera’, after the names of Chamber of Philharmonia and tal- ented pianist. He regularly organis- at 15:30 Sunday through Thursday. Consular Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany drivers) and third persons cannot be accepted. stamped there. their royal founders. Shortly they are es concerts by well-known musi- Services for Canadian Citizens are provided in Kuwait would like to inform the general Please note that the German Embassy exclu- ❑ ❑ ❑ called the ‘Old’ and ‘New’ Opera. cians for the benefit of music lovers from 09:00 until 12:00 Sunday through public that the papers required for applying for sively works together with the following travel Immortalized and to widen the knowledge of Wednesday. a visa are the following: agencies: Aamar Travel & Tourism (Tel: Registration of Sri Lankans: All Sri music in Kuwait. His e-mail Canada offers a registration service for all 2 application forms filled in completely 2622627/8), Al-Qabas Travel (Tel: 22488777), Lankans residing in Kuwait are kindly request- NB: Sometimes royal names are address is: cowerkowicz @yahoo.- Canadians travelling or living abroad. This 2 recent photos with a white background Universal Travel (Tel: 22415830/2/4) and Al- ed to register with the Embassy. For more immortalized through the names of com and cowerkowicz@hotmail.- service is provided so that Consular Officials signed passport, valid for at least another 6 Rabiah Travel (Tel: 22429991/2/3). information you may contact Ms Fareen, Ms historical buildings and institutions com can contact and assist Canadians in an emer- months Visa applications presented by any other Shahira, Ms Ayesha on 25339140, 25339137, gency in a foreign country, such as a natural hotel reservation with full address of the travel agency will be refused and can only be 25339142.