Art Alert: Al-Darb Al-Ahmar Arts School students to perform at Cairo's Falaki Theatre

Ahram Online , Thursday 4 Aug 2016

The play first premiered in February 2014 and takes elements from circus arts and theatre

Lost and Found
From the performance of Lost and Found in April 2014. (Photo: Bassam Al Zoghby)

Al-Darb Al-Ahmar Arts School (DAAS) is scheduled to perform their play Lost and Found on 19 and 20 August at Cairo’s Falaki Theatre, where the play first premiered in February 2014.

This summer has thus far been a vibrant one for the school's students, following their participation in a number of cultural festivals in Tunisia and Morocco last July, including the Bab El Bahr Festival in Sousse, Tunisia, and the International Children' Folklore Festival in Morocco, among other events. 

Directed by Hanan Hajj Ali who co-wrote the play along with cultural activist Basma El-Husseiny, Lost and Found takes elements from circus arts and theatre to present the stories of children’s relationships with their families, their neighbourhoods, and their country.

Since its onset in 2012, DAAS— located in the economically underprivileged district of the same name — has succeeded in supplying dozens of children with an array of artistic skills. 

The school, which aims to provide neighbourhood children with an arts education to help in securing future jobs, was founded by the NGO Culture Resource (Al-Mawred Al-Thaqafy) in cooperation with the Aga Khan Development Network's Music Initiative.

The school currently operates under El-Genaina Company for Arts and Culture Services and continues to partner with Aga Khan.

Working with children aged eight to 18, DAAS opens its door to new students twice a year: after mid-term examinations in January, during which it accepts 100 or more students, and after final exams in May.  

Upon enrolment, each child chooses one of three specialisations offered at the school; circus arts, percussion or wind instruments.

Besides Lost and Found, DAAS’ other performances include Darbaka — the end product of a two-week workshop by STOMP trainers from the UK — and most recently 2015's Balalika, a performance comprising circus acts, musical performances and a clown show, all performed by second-year students and a number of graduates of the school.

Friday 19 and Saturday 20 August, 8pm
Falaki Theatre, Falaki Street, American University Campus, downtown Cairo

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