Egypt to reopen National Theatre six years after it was damaged by fire

Ahram Online, Tuesday 9 Sep 2014

Culture minister Gaber Asfour announced reopening of the National Theatre to take place in early October

National Theatre
Photo: Ahram Gate

The Ministry of Culture announced on Monday 8 September that the Egyptian National Theatre (“Masrah Al Qawmi”) in Cairo's Downtown district – which was partially burned six years ago – will reopen after undergoing extensive renovations.

In 2008, following the fire that caused considerable damage, renovation costs were estimated at LE55 million ($7.7 million).

"The final date to reopen the National Theatre is during the celebrations of the 6 October war next month," Gaber Asfour, Egypt's culture minister said. Gaber added that students would be granted 50 percent discounts on ticket fees to all the performances, as part of encouragement for the young generation to attend theatre plays which would include classical and contemporary works.

The theatre was established in 1921 and has architectural significance in Egypt's cultural scene. The building reflects the Islamic era's artistic architecture

The theatre will open with a play in which Nour El-Sherif stars in the role of Refaa El-Tahrtwy (1801 - 1873) an Egyptian icon of educational and cultural renaissance.

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