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Egypt's culture picks of the week: 30 March - 6 April: VIDEOS

This week includes many activities brought to Cairo and Alexandria by the Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival, in addition to a selection of film screenings, concerts and exhibitions across many venues

Ahram Online, Saturday 29 Mar 2014
Weekly events
From top left clockwise: Still from film 'Alphees des Etoiles' (screening 31 March), Al Darb Al Ahram Arts School (31 March, Photo: Bassam Al Zoghby), Aya Metwalli (4 Apr, photo: still from YouTube), Cosi Fan Tutte (30 & 31 Mar, still from the opera video)
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Sunday 30 March

Hassan Khan exhibition opening at Kodak Passageway at 6pm

This year, D-CAF decided to showcase contemporary Egyptian artist Hassan Khan. The show will be the first major survey of Khan's work in Cairo. The exhibit will feature works produced by the internationally acclaimed artist between the mid-90s to the present day. The works include text-based projects, sculptural forms, and music projects, among others. The exhibition will be located in unused storefronts alongside the Kodak passageway in Downtown Cairo. The site has been designed and curated by CLUSTER in such a way that creates a series of exhibition spaces that blur the lines between the artist's diverse oeuvre and the surrounding local community. Read more about two decades of Hassan Khan exhibition here.

20 Adly Street, Downtown, Cairo

Arax choir at the Cairo Opera at 7pm

Armenian community choir Arax will celebrate its 10th anniversary with a concert organised by the Armenian Orthodox Patriarchate in Egypt. Operating under the Armenian Prelacy of Cairo, the Arax Choir goes back to the 1990s. However, back then, the choir had a different name, Zavartnots, and was conducted by David Zalyan, who was succeeded by conductor Hrant Aghajanian, a music and arts teacher, one of the important mediators of Armenian culture in Egypt. Finally, in 2003, Mihran Ghazelian became the choir's conductor and artistic director, changing its name to Arax. Under Ghazelian's management, Arax expanded to include over 30 amateur singers, including four voices, men and women. Read more about the choir here.

Small Hall, Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo

Opera Così fan tutte at the Cairo Opera House at 8pm

Cairo Opera Company, Cairo Opera Orchestra conducted by Ahmed El-Saedi, and the Cairo Opera Choir with choir master Aldo Magnato will perform Mozart's Così fan tutte, an Italian opera buffa in two acts. The opera is directed by Hazem Roshdy. The opera will be also performed on 31 March. Listen to a fragment from the opera below.

Main Hall, Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo

Fathy Salama’s Electric Project at Cairo Opera at 8pm

The concert will include an electronic remix of old and new compositions of Fathy Salama’s Sharkiat Band. The evening will feature Egyptian singer Dina El-Wedidi and a hip-hop band Kaboos Nation. With this powerful line-up, the concert promises to infuse the evening with social and political lyrics.

Open Air Theatre, Zamalek, Cairo


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
7pm     Les Grandes Ondes (à l'Ouest) — Longwave (Switzerland/France/Portugal, 2013), French Institute, Alexandria
9pm     La Nuit qu’on suppose — The Night We Suppose (Belgium, 2013), Odeon Cinema

Check the festival's programme here.

 

Monday 31 March

Screenings of The Past and Alphees des étoiles at Odeon Cinema

Written and directed by Iran's Asghar Farhadi, The Past is a French drama starring Bérénice Bejo, Tahar Rahim and Ali Mosaffa. The film was nominated for the Palm d'Or at Cannes and it was also selected as the Iranian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards. The Past will be screened at 1pm, 3:30pm and 6:30pm. Alphees des étoiles (Alphees of the Stars) is a 2012 Canadian movie written and directed by Hugo Latulippe about a girl who suffers from a disease that slows language and motor skills development. Alphees des étoiles will be screened at 9.30pm. Watch trailer of Alphees des Etoiles below.

Abdel-Hamid Street, off Talaat Harb Street, Downtown, Cairo

Last day of the Opera Così fan tutte at the Cairo Opera House at 8pm

Cairo Opera Company, Cairo Opera Orchestra conducted by Ahmed El-Saedi, and the Cairo Opera Choir with choir master Aldo Magnato will perform Mozart's Così fan tutte, an Italian opera buffa in two acts. The opera is directed by Hazem Roshdy. The opera was also performed on 26, 27 and 30.

Main Hall, Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo

Last days of Maspero II: Collective exhibition at Darb 1718

Maspero II: The Sequel is a follow-up to a 2011 exhibition curated by Ali Abdel-Mohsen, featuring the works of artists who dealt with the topic of censorship, media freedom and the iconic Television and Radio Building (Maspero) using painting, writing, video, photography, graffiti and even architecture. This time around, some of the artists from the original exhibition, along with new names, are revisiting these concepts nearly three years later to examine what has changed — or not — since the outbreak of the Egyptian revolution. Maspero II: The Sequel will feature works by Ahmed El-Shaer, Aisha El-Shabrawy, Ali Abdel-Mohsen, Amr El-Kafrawy, Azza Eissa, Moataz Nasr, Moawya Helal, May El-Hossamy, Yassmin El-Meligy and Youssef Limoud. Exhibition opened 1 March and runs until 1 April.

Qasr Al-Shamee Street, Al-Fakhareen, Old Cairo (behind the Hanging Church and Amr Ibn Al-Aas Mosque)


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
9pm     Alphée des étoilesAlphée of the Stars (Canada, 2012), Odeon Cinema
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
Check the festival's programme here.

 

Tuesday 1 April

Screenings of The Past and La Nuit qu’on suppose at Odeon Cinema

Written and directed by Iran's Asghar Farhadi, The Past is a French drama starring Bérénice Bejo, Tahar Rahim and Ali Mosaffa. The film was nominated for the Palm d'Or at Cannes and it was also selected as the Iranian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 86th Academy Awards. The Past will be screened at 1pm, 3:30pm and 6:30pm. Watch trailer of The Past below. La Nuit qu’on suppose (The Night We Suppose) is a 2013 French movie written and directed by Benjamin d'Aoust, where characters presented have lost their sight, highlighting the similarities we ultimately have with each other. La Nuit qu’on suppose will be screened at 9.30pm, with English and Arabic subtitles. Both films are screened as a cooperation between Zawya and D-CAF.

Abdel-Hamid Street, off Talaat Harb Street, Downtown, Cairo

Screening of Longwave at Odeon Cinema at 9pm

Les Grandes Ondes (à l'Ouest), or Longwave, is a 2013 comedy directed by Lionel Baier. The film is a co-production by Switzerland, France and Portugal. It premiered in Paris in February 2014. The film presents a small team from the Radio Suisse Romande that is commissioned to work on a story about Swiss aid in Portugal. But nothing goes according to plan, since the journalists find themselves in the middle of the Carnation Revolution, a military coup that overthrew the regime of Estado Novo in April 1974. The screening is part of a cooperation between D-CAF and Zawya. Read more about this and other screenings of the same film here.

4 Abdel Hamid Said Street, off Talaat Harb Street

Bollywood Workshop at the Cairo Opera House’s grounds at 5pm

In this free event, Bollywood dancers will hold a workshop introducing this art genre to Egyptian audiences. The event will also include a Bhangra drumming workshop, presenting rhythms of popular Indian folk and Punjabi music. The event is part of this year’s India by the Nile Festival. This one-month annual event, now in the second year, aims at bringing India’s culture to Egyptian audiences. This year the festival will bring together music performances, visual arts, literary figures, renowned Indian cartoonist Sudhir Tailang, among many others.

Cairo Opera House grounds, in front of the Hanager Theatre, Zamalek, Cairo


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
9pm     Les Grandes Ondes (à l'Ouest) - Longwave (Switzerland/France/Portugal, 2013), Odeon Cinema
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
6pm     Baladilab, Take a coffee with your heritage, Viennoise Hotel
Check the festival's programme here.

 

Wednesday 2 April

Ahmed Rabie Jazz Band at Cairo Opera Open Air Theatre at 8pm

Ahmed Rabie will bring jazz fusions to the stage of the Cairo Opera House’s Open Air Theatre.

Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo

Screening of short film on cultural policy at Doum Cultural Foundation at 8pm

The short film ‘Cultural policy for all Egyptians’ by Marwa Zein tackles issues of people’s rights to culture. The screening is part of a campaign that works within the framework of developing cultural policies in Egypt and the region.

13 El-Fardous Street, Agouza, Giza, Egypt


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
9pm     Un mois en Thailande — One Month In Thailand (Romania, 2012), Odeon Cinema
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
Check the festival's programme here.

Maspero II: The Sequel
Maspero II: The Sequel, Collective exhibition at Darb 1718

 

Thursday 3 April

Piano performance by students of the Talents Development Centre at the Cairo Opera House at 7pm

Students of three piano classes of the Talents Development Centre, operating under the Cairo Opera House, will showcase their skills in a concert held at the Cairo Opera’s Small Hall. Students will represent the classes of Elena Dzamashvili, Haitham Ibrahim and Sherif Saleh.

Small Hall, Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo  

Circus performance at Azhar Park at 8pm

Al-Darb Al-Ahmar Arts School (DAAS) will stage a circus performance titled 'Lost and Found' on three consecutive days — 3, 4 and 5 April — on the Al-Azhar Park stage. Directed by Hanan Hajj Ali, the play proved highly successful when it premiered in February 2014 at the American University in Cairo's Falaki Theatre. The performance takes elements from circus arts and theatre to present the stories of children’s relationships with their families, their neighbourhoods, and their country. Read more about the event here. Check short documentary about Al-Darb Al-Ahram Arts School below.

Al-Azhar Park, Salah Salem Road, Al-Darassa, Cairo

Bollywood Love Story at the Cairo Opera House at 8pm

A musical Bollywood Love Story will be performed for four consecutive evenings — 3, 4, 5 and 6 April — as part of the first events of the India by the Nile Festival. (5 April will have two performances at 11am and 8pm). This one-month annual event, now in the second year, aims at bringing India’s culture to the Egyptian audiences. This year the festival will bring together music performances, visual arts, literary figures, renowned Indian cartoonist Sudhir Tailang, among many others.

Main Hall, Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
3pm     Is Art Important? Discussion Series: Why is Art so Important? The Greek Campus, AUC
6pm     Violence Lointaine (Egypt/Switzerland/France/DR Congo), Talee’a Large Theatre, Zaki Tolaymat Hall
8pm     Ahmed El-Attar, The Last Supper (Egypt), Falaki Theatre
10pm   El Manzouma (Egypt) / One Be Lo (USA) / Hello Psychaleppo (Syria/Lebanon), Sherazade Nightclub
Check the festival's programme here.

Friday 4 April

Aya Metwalli to perform in Vent at 9pm

Aya Metwalli is a solo guitarist and singer. Most of her songs are known for mixing prose with unconventional song structures. Her songs include "Hodour We Gheyab," "Daftar Safari," and "The Winter Song." Watch Aya Metwalli below.

6 Kasr El-Nil Street, Downtown, Cairo

Layer of Green: Photography exhibition at CIC

Cairo's Contemporary Image Collective hosts a photography exhibition, Layer of Green, showcasing the work of young photographers from Cairo and Alexandria that focuses on the environment. The participating photographers are Ahmed Hamed, Ahmed Safyeldin, Amr El-Maghraby, Ebrahim El-Moly, Manar Morsi, Maryam Ahmed, Mai El-Shazly, Mireille El-Magrissy, Nadia Mounier, Sara Sallam and Wafaa Samir. The exhibition is the result of a workshop organised by the Goethe Institute and the CIC Photo School last November that focused on the social, cultural, political and economic context of “the layer of green,” or the environment. Exhibition runs until 16 April. Read more about the exhibition here.

22 Abdel Khalek Tharwat Street, 4th Floor, Downtown Cairo


D-CAF programme:
10am   Footnotes to Hassan Khan exhibition (related programmes), Kodak Passageway
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
2pm     EE Dance Studio, Invisible Boundaries (Egypt), in front of the Egyptian Stock Exchange (Borsa)
3pm     The100Hands, Running Running Nucleus (Netherlands/Egypt), in front of the Egyptian Stock Exchange (Borsa)
3pm     Discussion Series: Art and the Political, The Greek Campus, AUC
6pm     Violence Lointaine (Egypt/Switzerland/France/DR Congo), Talee’a Large Theatre, Zaki Tolaymat Hall
8pm     Yasmine Hamdan (Lebanon)/Fayrouz Karawya & Ismael (Egypt), Qasr Al-Nil Theatre
8pm     Ahmed El-Attar, The Last Supper (Egypt), Falaki Theatre
Check the festival's programme here.

Also on this day:
Bollywood Love Story at the Cairo Opera House at 8pm. Check 3 April listings for more details.


 

Saturday 5 April

Easter concert at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina at 7pm

Bibliotheca Alexandrina Chamber Orchestra, BA Choir, Heaven Harp Choir and BA Amateurs Orchestra conducted by Sherif Mohie Eldin will perform works by Wofgang Amadeus Mozart: Adagio and Fuge in C minor, Piano Concerto No 14 in E flat major and Mass in C major. The soloists of the evening include Gianfranco Pappelardo on piano, along with singers such as soprano Ohoude Khadr, tenor Roberto Creesa and baritone Ezzat Ghanem. The choir master of the evening is Rodica Ocheseanu.

Conference Hall, Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Chatby, Alexandria

Arias from famous operas at Alexandria Opera House at 8pm

A selection of arias from Tosca and other famous operas will be performed by soloists from the Cairo Opera Company. Director of the evening is Mahdy Sayed with Maya Gvineria on piano.

Sayed Darwish Theatre (Alexandria Opera House), 22 El-Horreya Road, Raml Station, Alexandria

My Nineties concert, film screening and book signing at ADEF at 8.30pm

The Arab Digital Expression Foundation (ADEF) is set to host 'My Nineties,' an art project that explores media trends during the 1990s and their influence on the Egyptian collective memory, with an audio-visual performance by visual artist Mohammed Allam and electronic musician Rami Abadir, using collected footage from the decade as source material. A documentary film featuring several icons of the era's media industry will be screened as well, and a book that documents what was written in newspapers, magazines and research papers about television and media in this era will also be on sale. Read more on 'My Nineties' here. Check Medrar's short documentary about the 'My Nineties' project below.

143, Street 8, off El-Nafoura Square, Moqqatam


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
3pm     Is Art Important? Discussion Series: Creating Art in Time of Adversity (Syrian Focus), The Greek Campus, AUC
6pm     It Happened Tomorrow (Syria), Damascus Theater Lab, Talee’a Small Theatre: Salah Abdel Sabour Hall
8pm     Dance Double Bill (Egypt/France), Falaki Theatre
9pm     El-Warsha Double Bill: Zawaya & The Hour of Curfew (Egypt), El-Warsha
Check the festival's programme here.

Also on this day:
Bollywood Love Story at the Cairo Opera House at 11am and 8pm. Check 3 April listings for more details.

 

Sunday 6 April

Last performance of Bollywood Love Story at the Cairo Opera House at 8pm

A musical Bollywood Love Story will be performed for four consecutive evenings — 3, 4, 5 and 6 April — as part of the first events of the India by the Nile Festival. This one-month annual event, now in the second year, aims at bringing India’s culture to Egyptian audiences. This year the festival will bring together music performances, visual arts, literary figures, renowned Indian cartoonist Sudhir Tailang, among many others.

Main Hall, Cairo Opera House, Zamalek, Cairo


D-CAF programme:
12pm   smART Mobile Film Festival, screening booths across Downtown Cairo
12pm   Hassan Khan Exhibition, Kodak Passageway
1pm     Ahmed El-Attar, On the Importance of Being an Arab (Egypt), Rawabet Theatre
3pm     Is Art Important? Discussion Series: Contemporary Middle-Eastern Art from International Perspective, The Greek Campus, AUC
6pm     It Happened Tomorrow (Syria), Damascus Theater Lab, Talee’a Small Theatre: Salah Abdel Sabour Hall
7pm     Alphée des étoiles — Alphée of the Stars (Canada, 2012), French Institute, Alexandria
9pm     Dance Double Bill (Egypt/France), Falaki Theatre
9pm     Francophone Short Films (Third Evening), Odeon Cinema
Check the festival's programme here.

Crossroads
Exhibition Crossroads: Alfons Louis and Sarkis Tossoonian at Safarkhan. The exhibition runs until 16 April (Photo: Artwork by Alfons Louis. Photo courtesy: Safarkhan Gallery)

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