Not to be missed: Ismailia Film Festival launches; Gaza Mon Amour screening; Ali El-Haggar, Aziz Maraka concerts

Ahram Online , Tuesday 27 Feb 2024

Ahram Online highlights a selection of do-not-miss events this week (28 February - 5 March, 2024) in Cairo.

Not to miss

25th Ismailia International Festival for Documentary and Shorts (IIFDS)

The oldest specialized film festival in Egypt, the Middle East, and Africa will kick off on Wednesday 28 February in the city of Ismailia. The festival continues until 5 March. 

Read more about the festival here

Hisham Kharma - music
Wednesday 28 February, 8pm
Gomhouria Theatre, Gomhouria street, Downtown, Cairo

In his concerts, composer Hisham Kharma creates a marriage between traditional and modern sounds.

Kharma began performing live music concerts in 2016. Accompanied by a grand orchestra, Kharma performed in major events in notable locations such as at the feet of the pyramids, the Cairo Citadel and the London Mansion House.

He created the theme music for numerous important national events, and across many Egyptian institutions.

Ali El-Haggar - music
Wednesday 28 February, 8pm
El-Sawy Culturewheel, River Hall, 26th of July Street, Zamalek, Cairo

El-Haggar has been one of the best-known singers in Egypt and the Arab world over the past four decades. He has performed lyrics drawn from the poetry of Salah Jahin, Abdel-Rahman El-Abnoudy and Sayed Hegab. He has also collaborated with some of the country's most renowned composers such as Baligh Hamdy, Sayed Mekkawy, Omar Khairat and Fathy Salama.

Pseudohistory - exhibition
Opening: Thursday 29 February, 8pm
The exhibition continues until 18 March
Arcade Gallery, 25 Orabi street, Maadi, Cairo

The exhibition by Fatma Abodoma, a visual artist whose roots belong to the south, the place where she feels peaceful and safe. She lived most of her life in Cairo the wild old city that inspires her like nothing else. 

She studied Art, and exhibited her work in Egypt, Germany, New York/USA and Kuwait. She also published a limited edition art book Milk Tea with Mint. 

Her research explores themes such as suspended time, memory, and mental disorders as a source of inspiration. She employs drawings, paintings, cyanotype printing techniques, photography and video making to create images and tell stories.

Gaza Mon Amour - film
Thursday 29 February, 8pm
Qahrawya Studio (in former Townhouse galley bld.), 10 Hussein Pasha El Meamari, Downtown, Cairo

Directed by twin brothers Tarzan and Arab Nasser, Palestinian film Gaza Mon Amour is about 60-year-old fisherman Issa’s (Salim Daw) who attempts to declare his secret love to dressmaker Siham (Hiam Abbass). He then discovers an ancient statue of Apollo in his fishing net, which eventually causes trouble with the local authorities.

Gaza Mon Amour also stars Maisa Abdelhadi, Georges Iskandar, Haitham Al-Omari, and Manal Awad.

The film was Palestine's official submission for the Foreign Language Film category at the Oscars 2021.

The Just - theatre play
Performed daily, 1-5 March, 9pm
Al-Talia Theatre, Ataba Square, Cairo

Directed by Mohamed Fadel, the play is based on Albert Camus’s The Just Assassins. Camus’s play looks into issues of murder and terrorism while shedding light on the true story of Russian socialist revolutionaries who assassinated Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich in 1905.

The Just features Khaled Raafat, Hadir Tariq, Mohamed Fadel, Abdel Rahman Kamal, Rami Nader, Saeed Kabil.

Aziz Maraka - music
Friday, 1 March, 6pm
Nile University, 26th of July Corridor, Sheikh Zayed (Cairo outskirts)

Born and based in Tunisia, Maraka is a Jordanian songwriter, singer, and producer with Palestinian origins. His journey in music began when he started playing piano and was later awarded a scholarship to pursue his education in the US where he got his bachelor’s degree in music composition from the University of Arkansas.

While studying, Maraka released a number of songs with one of his first hits being Bent El Nas, which was included in his self-titled debut album (2008). This opened doors to a thriving career with Maraka popularising his personal style that he calls Razz, representing a fusion of Arabic rock and jazz performed in the Jordanian dialect.

Maraka has a particularly huge fan base in Jordan where he performs frequently. He has also performed across the Arab region to large audiences. His popularity in Egypt has significantly increased over the past few years.

Stigma - music
Friday, 1 March, 9pm (doors open at 8.30)
Room Art Space, 10 Etehad El Mohamein street, Cairo

Established in 2020, Stigma started as an Egyptian indie rock band distinguished by its original compositions, aspiring to attain recognition as one of the foremost musical acts in Egypt. 

Their upcoming concert will be the band’s new album release.

Carmen - opera
Wednesday 6 and Friday 8 March, 8pm
Cairo Opera House, main hall, Cairo

Bizet’s opera Carmen will be presented by the Cairo Opera Company, accompanied by the Cairo Opera Orchestra and Choir conducted by Nader Abbassi, and the Cairo Opera Ballet Company. The opera’s director is Hazem Tayel. 

Following two performances in March, the opera will return to the stage on 18, 19, 21, and 22 April.

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