Bringing together the new pillars of Egypt's music and arts scenes, ADAD is a brilliant new initiative designed to strengthen and give new life to the community. Eihab Boraie finds out more as the first programme of events is in full swing.
Once upon a time in Cairo, culture thrived and magnificent theatres and art spaces were as common as batata carts. Tourists flocked from all over the world to marvel at our history, and to seek entertainment in what was then the Middle East largest cultural hub. As time wore on, Egypt’s beautiful theatres were left to rot as arts and culture became tarnished by wars and political instability. Thankfully the decline of arts and culture has plateaued and, since the Jan 25th revolution, has been steadily returning to its former glory thanks to the collective efforts of many groups, who have managed to form a vibrant and artistic community.
One project that brought a variety of organisations together is entitled ADAD. ADAD is a curatorial collaboration between five institution that aim to help build the momentum behind the burgeoning arts community. According to Mada Masr Chief Editor, Lina Attalah, "ADAD as a project comes in as an opportunity for collaborations between institutions that share more values than practices, particularly with regards to the quest to explore different possibilities outside the scope of the mainstream in the realms of film, music and media among others." The ambitious partnership involves "five participating institutions; the Townhouse Gallery of contemporary art, Cimatheque, an alternative film centre, 100 Copies, a music label and performance space, Megawra, a built environment collective, and Mada Masr, an independent news website,” explains Attalah.
The first series of programmes is set for April 26th – May 1st. On Tap is a symposium looking at traditional versus alternative educational models in Egypt; a panel discussion and audio performance featuring local and international media platforms; a screening of Lebanese filmmaker Mohamed Soueid’s Tango of Yearning; and an electronic music performance. We know we were a little late in informing our readers; however there is still plenty to catch including the film screening, music discussion and a night of electronic music by Aya Metwalli, Quit Together, Abdullah el Miniawy & Ahmed Saleh.
According to Maha El Nabawi, Mada Masr co-founder and one of the organisers of the ADAD events, "It has certainly been a challenge to collectively create the ADAD – to think of relevant, intellectual programming that is also accessible and relatable to the audience. Meanwhile acquiring the necessary funding to activate any event is always difficult, but we are confident that the series will prove to be a beneficial cultural product and discursive platform for progressive debate."
All of this will be taking place at the Townhouse, one of Egypt’s oldest and largest non-profit independent arts and culture institutions in Egypt. With the diverse programme already underway, one can expect that the ADAD project will not only heighten Egypt’s art scene, but will also shine a light on tireless efforts of all the initiatives that are constantly making Egypt a better place to live and be creative.
To find out more about this amazing projects and details of each night check out there Facebook page.