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Wednesday, 03 March 2021

Art Alert: Commemorating Naguib Mahfouz with stage adaptations of his works

On two occasions, director Mahmoud Sayed tackles prolific writer Naguib Mahfouz's works with an interactive theatre performance and a night of play readings

Ahram Online , Tuesday 22 Dec 2015
(Photo: part of promotional material for Deliverance by Namat)
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Commemorating 104 since the birth of Egyptian Nobel Prize winner Naguib Mahfouz, Namat Theatre Troupe brings to stage three literary works by the prolific writer on 30 December.

Namat’s Mahmoud Sayed directs the play readings which offer a simple performance dramatising the selected works, which are lesser known titles from Mahfouz's rich oeuvre; Deliverance, The Meeting, and A Family That has Been Through Hard Times.

The readings will take place at The National Theatre as part of their programme of monthly play reading nights.

According to the event description, the actors Adham Osman, Ayat Magdi Mohamed Ashraf and Mona Soliman “will not only read these three texts, but they will also act them out in a way that would let the audience visualise the world against which these pieces were set.”

In the same week on 2 January, Deliverance will be performed as a full play at Osiris for Art Production and Training.

The work by Mahfouz centres on a pacifist and a rebel who coincidentally meet, and as the blockade tightens around them, find unexpected love and changes in their perceptions on life.

The performance at Osiris will invite audiences to a unique “promenade theatre experience,” where attendees are encouraged to explore the set and walk around the scenes and into the rooms.

Scenography for the play is designed by Omar El-Moutaz Bellah, the founder of Teatro Independant Theatre who directed No Exit in 2013.

Namat is an Egyptian Theatre company established in 2011. Its previous production Human and Other Things, based on another Mahfouz work titled Survival, was performed in Edinburgh’s Fringe Festival in 2013. In the same year, the company performed Resignation at the French Institute in Cairo.

The play reading night will take place on Wednesday 30 December at 7pm at
the Al-Zorkany Art Space, The Egyptian National Theatre, Ataba, Downtown, Cairo

Performances of Deliverance will take place on Saturday 2 January, at 5:30 and 8pm.

Osiris, 68 Al Kasr El Aini Street, Garden City, Cairo

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