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Cairo's underprivileged Ezbet Khairallah neighborhood gets theatrical production training programme

Called the Backstage programme, the training is an initiative by Studio Emad El-Din, working in cooperation with Tawasol foundation

Ahram Online , Tuesday 21 May 2019
(Photo: Mostafa Abdel Aty)

Studio Emad El-Din, working with Tawasol Foundation, has announced the launch of the Backstage Programme, an activity aiming to provide thorough theatrical production training to the young inhabitants of Ezbet Khairallah, an underprivileged neighborhood in Cairo.

The Backstage Programme is one of the numerous theatrical production trainings and workshops offered by Studio Emad El-Din, including 2BContinued lab and festival, which has allowed many backstage theatre trainees in professionally establishing themselves in the industry.

Working with Tawasol Foundation, an NGO established at Ezbet Khairallah in 2008, Studio Emad El-Din has reached out to the many young people from underprivileged communities to prepare the next generation of theatre professionals.

According to a press release by Studo Emad El-Din, the concept of the Backstage Programme was created by Ahmed El-Attar and was developed and designed by Nevine El-Ibiary, the director of workshop and residency programme, co-founder of Studio Emad El-Din and director of 2B Continued Festival.

"El-Ibiary had the vision of providing high level professional training in the technical side of theatre – light design, set design, and stage management – to underprivileged neighborhoods so that they would be able to professionally work in theatre. Part of the programme's plan is to enlarge its working areas to 20 other underprivileged areas with the same cohorts," the press release reads.

Ezbet Khairallah is one of the largest and most densely populated informal communities in Egypt, covering an area of 2 square kilometers (480 feddans). Its residents lack access to primary services such as water, a sewage system, and electricity.

The young trainees are well-integrated during their second phase of training through participating in the Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival (D-CAF) thanks to their motivation and being "very attentive, interested, and eager to learn," said El-Ibiary.

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