11th Theatre Without Fund Festival to bear the name of Egyptian artist Ashraf Zaki

Ati Metwaly , Saturday 24 Jul 2021

The festival will take place in Alexandria between 22 and 26 August 2021


The supreme committee of the Theatre Without Fund Festival (TWFF) announced that its 11th edition (scheduled to take place 22-26 August) will bear the name of Egyptian artist Ashraf Zaki. The festival will take place across numerous stages in Alexandria.

Zaki is currently president of High Institute of the Theatrical Arts and also head of the Acting Professions Syndicate. He has had an important effect on the Egyptian creative scene, particularly theatre where he directed numerous plays with the best known being Laugh And Play And Mazzika and Jaws Family.

A graduate of the Higher Institute of Theatrical Arts, Zaki has a decades-long career in theatre and television. As an actor, he is particularly known for his roles in television series such as My Aunt Safiya And The Monastery, The Republic of Zifta, Umm Kalthoum. He has also appeared in numerous smaller roles in the Egyptian cinema.

The Theatre Without Fund Festival was founded by Gamal Yakout, president of the Cairo International Festival for Experimental Theatre's 28th edition (14 and 19 December 2021). Yakout also presided over the TWFF, and stepped back from this role this year, passing the torch to the festival's artistic director Ibrahim Al-Forn.

The 10th edition of the festival took place in 2019 presenting 13 performances from nine countries – four from Egypt, two from Oman, and one each from Palestine, Tunisia, Libya, France, Italy, Switzerland and Korea. The festival was dedicated to late Egyptian actor Talaat Zakaria (1960-2019).

The festival management revealed that in response to the festival's call earlier this year, over 100 performances from a variety of Egyptian governorates have been submitted to its 11th edition.

The committee has chosen performances that include J B Priestley's The Rose and Crown, directed by Ibrahim Ashraf and produced by the Higher Institute of Theatrical Arts; The Suez Epic written and directed by Mohamed Zaki and produced by the Acting Professions Syndicate; The Witness directed by Ihab Gaber and produced by Sarkha Theatre Troupe, among a number of other plays.

The TWFF's commitee includes theatre personalities such as Saeed Kabeel, director Sameh Al Hadary, choreographer Mohamed Mizo, actor Islam Awad, and director Ahmed Samir.

The festival's 2020 edition was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic. It now returns with plays to be staged between 22 and 26 August 2021.

The festival will be held on the stages of the Bibliotheca Alexandrina under the auspices of it's Arts Centre, as well as at the Lycée El Horreya theater, the headquarters of the Alexandria Theater Troupe and the Al Anfoushi Culture Palace Theater.

The festival is supported by the Ministry of Culture with the logistical support extended by its numerous affiliates – the General Authority for the Cultural Palaces, the Artistic House of Theater, the Cultural Production Affairs Sector – in addition to Bibliotheca Alexandrina.

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