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In photos: Upper Egypt Children's Choir delights Cairo audiences

A children's choir from Minya performed traditional songs during an evening organised by Cairo's Talaat Harb Cultural Centre

Ahram Online , Tuesday 21 Jun 2016
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Upper Egypt Children Choir performs at Talaat Harb Cultural Centre on 20 June 2016 (Photo: Ati Metwaly)
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On 20 June, the Talaat Harb Cultural Centre presented a very special ensemble: a children's choir from Upper Egypt.

The evening was part of a number of Ramadan cultural events organized by the Cultural Development Fund that will take place across many venues, including the Talaat Harb centre.

The choir, which is managed by the Upper Egypt Association for Education and Development (AUEED) came to Cairo from Minya, a city located 250 kilometres south of Cairo.

Established in 1940 by Father Henry Ayrout, this non-profit association provides education and development services to four main zones of Upper Egypt: Minya, Assiut, Sohag and Luxor.

The choir is one of the many projects in which the association seeks to educate children and young people through music.

The idea of the choir was goes back to 1987 when Sister Celeste El-Khayat of the Sacred Heart Society decided to establish the ensemble and handpicked children with beautiful voices from local schools, reaching out to both Christians and Muslims.

In 1989, the choir gave its first performance, and ever since they continue to perform all across Egypt. Their repertoire encompasses mainly traditional songs, including those to the lyrics of Gibran Khalil Gibran, Fouad Haddad and Ahmed Fouad Nigm.

During their performance at the Talaat Harb Centre, the choir was accompanied by a group of oriental musicians. Divided into three music segments, the evening opened with songs for Egypt and was followed by a special selection of music for Ramadan.

Finally, the choir performed songs that were handed down to them by previous generations or sung by their grandparents, a lovely insight into the music heritage of their region.

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Upper Egypt Children Choir performs at Talaat Harb Cultural Centre on 20 June 2016 (Photo: Ati Metwaly)

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Upper Egypt Children Choir performs at Talaat Harb Cultural Centre on 20 June 2016 (Photo: Ati Metwaly)

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Upper Egypt Children Choir performs at Talaat Harb Cultural Centre on 20 June 2016 (Photo: Ati Metwaly)

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Musicians accompany the Upper Egypt Children Choir (Photo: Ati Metwaly)

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Enthusiastic audience of all generations came to attend the Upper Egypt Children Choir perform at Talaat Harb Cultural Centre on 20 June 2016 (Photo: Ati Metwaly)

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