As part of the Al-Mawred Al-Thaqafi (Culture Resource) initiative to develop the artistic scene among Egypt’s youth, its Darb Al-Ahmar School (DAAD) for performing arts is to present two shows alongside Spain’s Cia-Sebas Circus group at El-Genaina Theatre at the of this week.
Ashraf Kenawy, El-Genaina Theatre manager and head of Egypt’s programmes at Al-Mawred Al-Thaqafi, told Ahram Online, “Cia-Sebas is one of the best circus groups worldwide and we have invited the group to teach the young students at the school the circus art in a short-term workshop.” The Cia-Sebas group consists of four professional members who have taught children and adolescents at Darb Al-Ahmar circus arts including acrobatics, clowning and music. Kenawy emphasised that animal training was not a part of this short-term workshop.
According to Kenawy, students of DAAD are members of the Darb Al-Ahmar community, whose ages range from eight to 18. “We focus on developing their performing skills, specifically the circus arts,” he says. Students learn about acrobats, dancing, music and the clown shows on hand at any circus.
The product of the Cia-Sebas workshop will not be the students’ first performance. DAAD participated in the last Circus Festival of Egypt in October 2010. “Students of the school have also performed a number of shows at El-Genaina Theatre over the past year,” Kenawy told Ahram Online.
DAAD is part of Al-Mawred Al-Thaqafi projects, aimed at developing cultural awareness among residents of the Al-Darb Al-Ahmar neighbourhood of Cairo by highlighting the value of performing arts and music among its young people. The programme started back in 2009, but was officially inaugurated in March 2011. The number of students enrolled is now over 100, as Kenawy previously announced at Ahram Gate. As part of the curriculum, the school teaches students English, basic computer skills and music theory. “They train for ten hours a week,” Kenawy told Ahram Gate.
Cia-Sebas and the young students of DAAD will perform their Circus show at El-Genaina Theatre at Al-Azhar Park on Thursday, 28 July and on Friday, 29 July. Both shows will start at 8pm. Admission to either show is free.
El-Genaina Theatre, Al Azhar Park, Salah Salem Street, Islamic Cairo