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Countdown to D-CAF

The Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival is back on March 20th and we seriously can't wait. Check out some of the highlights and what to expect.

It isn't often that we get really really excited about an event but this year's Downtown Contemporary Arts festival has practically made us wet ourselves. The third annual DCAF event is set to take downtown Cairo by storm with a mixture of independent theatre, music, dance performances, film, visual arts exhibitions and other things we rarely see in Cairo. The festival, which takes place from March 20th until April 11th is set to feature an expanded programme of local and international artists, with a special focus on prominent names from the Arab region.

D-CAF Artistic Director and General Manager Ahmed El Attar said: “Since 2011, we’ve gained a great deal of experience as festival organisers. It’s gratifying to see that D-CAF has evolved, here in its third edition, to gain a far greater degree of maturity as a festival. D-CAF 2014 promises to be a rounded and coherent edition, with an expanded programme and a fantastic line-up of artists and performers, largely from the Arab region and but also further afield. This year, D-CAF aims to give audiences a snapshot of what is happening on the independent Arab arts scene at this moment of transition and upheaval in our region. We believe that our emphasis on high quality artists and content from the Arab world is what sets this festival apart. This year’s festival programme has been structured around the same core categories as previous years and offers an exciting line up of artists, many visiting Egypt for the very first time.”

The D-CAF performing arts programme will feature the world premiere of El Attar’s play The Last Supper; as well as a wide range of performances, including C'est du Chinois by Edit Kaldor, It Happened Tomorrow by Damascus Theatre Lab, directed by Oussama Ghanam and The Importance of Being an Arab by Temple Theatre Company, also directed by El Attar. The performing arts programme also includes the world premieres of several dance pieces such as Violence Lointaine, a collaboration between Omar Ghayatt, Delavallet Bidiefono, Maxime Denuc and Une Maison Vide Pour L'hospitalité by Mohamed Shafik and Laurence Rondoni.

Meanwhile, music fans can look forward to a number of treats including Lebanon’s Yasmine Hamdan, French artists the Jazz Nomads and USA's One Be Lo. The D-CAF film programme this year is curated by by Hervé Le Phuez, programmer of the Festival International du Film Francophone de Namur and will involve a special focus on Francophone films. However it isn't just foreign acts flying in to steal the limelight as this year's festival will place special emphasis on Middle Eastern talent at a number of high profile central Cairo venues including Qasr El Nil Theatre, Radio Cinema and Theatre, Falaki Theatre, the Kodak Building, The Egyptian Stock Exchange and Viennoise Space.

In short - it's going to be huge and we're going to be covering it all here at CairoScene. Come on down and join the culture train - it's going to be first class.