ISLAMABAD : Two competitions calling for the “most beautiful and influential voices” from around the world to recite the Quran and perform Adhan have been officially opened by Saudi Arabia’s General Authority for Entertainment. According to a tweet from its chairman Turki Al-Sheikh said the Quran and Adhan Awards “aim to to provide a rich Islamic experience to the world by highlighting the diversity of the cultures of the Islamic world, which is reflected in the different methods of reciting the Quran and raising the Adhan.”  Organizers of the competitions also hope to encourage a better understanding of the Quran and its recitations among Muslim youth, as well as promoting the nature of Islam which “rejects extremism and intolerance in all its forms.” Applications for both competitions opened on May 22 and will close on June 22. Filtering of applications will take place until August 22, with live performances taking place throughout August and September and the winners declared in October. Registration is open, Arab news reported. The competition is part of a packed schedule in 2019. The GEA has launched an ambitious program of events planned on a scale never before seen in the Kingdom in the throughout the year, with traditional and culturally significant local events featuring prominently in the plans.


In January, the GEA chairman Turki Al-Sheikh said: “Competitions are an important element of entertainment, the most important will take place during Ramazan and will be of an Islamic nature, with the supervision of Islamic scholars.


“The first competition will be for the most beautiful reciting of the Holy Qur’an, and competitors from all over the world are invited. The first prize will be SR 5 million.


“The second Islamic competition is for the athan (call for prayer). In addition to receiving a large prize of SR 2 million, the winner of the first prize can also look forward to raising the athan in the Prophet’s Holy mosque,” he added.