Bringing together a diverse group of inspirational women to champion collective growth
AlUla, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia –
Global musician, producer, songwriter and multi-Grammy-award winner Alicia Keys hosted the second edition of Women to Women, an afternoon of honest conversation and collaboration on 25 February 2023 in the palm tree filled oasis of AlUla.
Presented in collaboration with Good Intentions, the think-tank inspired format of Women to Women aims to initiate important conversations that create opportunity, mentorship and activate platforms of inspiration to put women at the heart of our collective cultural futures.
Following the second Alicia Keys concert at the iconic Maraya, where Alicia wowed and energised the crowd with a mix of favourite Keys classics and modern mash-ups and a very special moment with the AlUla Traditional Band, Keys has developed a meaningful connection to the people of AlUla and Saudi Arabia. “Keep lovin’, no one is goin’ get in the way of us,” said Keys to a delighted AlUla crowd.
Building on the success of the first edition of Women to Women, which was set in the art school Madrasat Addeera, this year’s event was set in the new outdoor venue in the heart of the AlUla oasis – the Wadi Ashar Oasis.
This second edition explored the concept ‘Wisdom of Women: Sharing collective knowledge, shifting the narrative and continuing legacies’ which seeks to contribute to a route map that sets in motion further conversation and dialogue around collective support and mentorship between generations of women. Embracing a future-forward mindset, this edition aimed to address questions including: How women can become each other’s resource and continue their long-standing heritage of power. How can women benefit from each other’s wisdom in order to nurture the collective? How can women reclaim space to tell their own stories?
Alicia Keys started the afternoon by addressing the diverse audience with a keynote speech which create a space for dynamic conversation and exchange of ideas. Hala Al-Hedaithy, General Manager of Programs & Activation, Ministry of Culture, moderated some powerful and insightful conversations amongst a range of esteemed panelists from various fields including Mashael Alobeidan (Pro Racing Rally Driver), Rasha Alkhamis (KSA’s first Female Certified Boxer) and Hafsa Alkhudairi (Arts and Culture Initiatives Lead, RCU).
The first panel session, Women in Community, celebrated the previous generations who have in turn shaped the lives of women today, the connection between individual growth and its ripple effect on the community, and the value of leaving a legacy for the next generation which further explored the importance of mentorship today. The second panel session, The Power of Narrative, deep-dived into stories as carriers of wisdom; the need for women to control their narratives; the representation of women in stories today; and the role of men in encouraging and championing these women-led narratives.
“We are delighted to be hosting the second edition of Women to Women with Alicia Keys. It’s important to nurture these collaborations and networks of support and creativity to enable inspirational women to flourish in the context of AlUla’s thriving cultural landscape,” said Nora Aldabal, Executive Director of Arts and Creative Industries at the Royal Commission for AlUla
Quotes from the speakers at the event:
“I ask myself three things, what is my highest vision, what is my vision of this situation – what do I have to accept in order to achieve, what do I have to let go. Just as I feel the growth in one year in AlUla, I feel the growth in one year of women to women”
“I’m really happy to be here and I’m honoured to share the panel with these beautiful accomplished women. It’s not only one of the best panels I’ve been on but one of the best platforms to speak about women’s empowerment and how we can improve it”
“It has been an absolute pleasure to be part of this panel with Alicia Keys and all these women trailblazers. These kind of conversations are very important to have, they widen our perspectives on how women support women when it comes to different angles of life and help us gain insights around how to approach life.”
“It’s always amazing discussing things so honestly with people. Being in this space allows for this kind of conversation that we don’t usually have or are not open to having in other spaces when we don’t feel safe or that we can express the hurt and happinesses that we have experienced through life.”