Traditional shadow theatre was historically a staple of Damascus cafe life, as story tellers in Syria used dyed animal-skin puppets to entertain their audience with tall tales, satire, songs and verse.
In Iraq, the Royal Game of Ur, which originates nearly 5,000 years ago and mysteriously died out, is making a come back. The game was rediscovered in 1922 in southern Iraq and it took experts more than 5 decades to understand it.
Two-day walking tour of Iraq's capital, Baghdad is an effort by young artists to address social dilemmas and reclaim the city's identity. The artists practise at the Abu Nuwas Theatre that was destroyed in 2003.
More than 10,000 books have been collected by festival organizers and distributed to primary and secondary schools in the city of Mosul. The reading festival seeks to show that Iraqis stand against ISIS' extremism and backwards ideology.
A new Iraqi play portrays how Yazidi women suffered under ISIS' rule. "You have lived through this atmosphere and know what happened in your country and what happened to the daughters of your country," says one of the actors participating in the play.