India's cultural presence in Egypt in apparent throughout the whole year, with many films and performing arts components seeing life on Cairo's stages and in its cinemas, or promoted at the Maulana Azad Centre for Indian Culture (MACIC).
Yet, the best showcase of India's cultural riches comes in the form of India by the Nile, a yearly festival organised by the Teamwork Arts (a company that specialises in showcasing Indian art at festivals all over the world) in cooperation with the Indian embassy and several Egyptian partners.
Once again, the festival, held this year from 2 to 10 March, will bring a selection of classical and popular Indian art forms to Cairo, Alexandria, Port Said and Fayoum.
In the dance category, the audience won't be disappointed, especially given that many Egyptian fans identify India primarily with Bollywood. This year’s festival will include “En Route to Bollywood,” a colourful show featuring the well-known songs from Bollywood films, accompanied by dancers.
A Bollywood dance workshop is one of the pillars of the India by the Nile event, and will take place this year too, led by India-based French dancer and choreographer Gilles Chuyen.
In addition, Astha Dixit Dance Company will provide a modern perspective on one of the oldest Indian classical dance forms, kathak.
The culture of Rajasthan will be on display thanks to folk musicians highlighting Kutle Khan, a renowned artist whose portfolio includes many concerts around the globe.
Yoga is a yet another popular component of the festival. While yoga practices are well known in Egypt through workshops provided by MACIC and numerous other centres, India by the Nile also takes part through sessions of “Yoga and Wellbeing.”
The festival would not be complete without a taste of Indian cuisine, reputedly thousands of years old. The unique cuisine will be offered in Cairo's InterContinental hotel by celebrated chef and entrepreneur Vikram Udaygiri.
Although this year the variety of performances seems to be a bit smaller than in the past seven years of the festival, the showcase is just enough to present India's creativity in its most significant forms.
On another hand, however, including different cities and venues in the programme gives India by the Nile an opportunity to present Indian art to numerous governorates outside the capital.
The full programme can be found on the event's website.
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