In these pages you will hopefully find interesting tips on how to take advantage of Cairo's many cultural opportunities, with particular attention to live events. Cairo Live Events Guide does not pretend to be exhaustive but will try to cover main events open to the public.

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Saturday, November 27, 2010


El Tanbura Hall has opened in August 2010 and is the brainchild of the people of El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music and of El Tanbura (the musical ensemble) founder and musical director Zakaria Ibrahim. The venue hosts weekly a performance from El Tanbura on Friday and from Sudanese group Rango on Thursday, both commencing at 9:30 PM (this is valid at time of posting, please refer to the weekly agenda for current schedule) plus special events.

El Tanbura Hall is located at 30A, El Balaqsa St., Abdin. In my humble opinion, the best way to get there is to take the metro and get down at Mohammed Naguib station. Once cleared the turnstiles, look for the exit to your right leading to Mohamed Farid street. Up the stairs out of the station, walk straight (you have a police station on the left side of the road) keeping your right. After a few meters the roads forks, almost imperceptibly, and, if you continue to keep right, leads you in a pedestrian alley with lots of baladi cafes with outdoor tables. Walk through them until you reach a big road. This is Tahrir street. Cross it and continue straight into what looks like the natural continuation of the alley you were coming from. This is a small street with lots of small shops (lot of tailors) called El Balaqsa (unmarked in all maps in my possession). Walk about 100 meters and you'll find on your right the El Tanbura Hall. It is impossible to miss it because of the posters plastered on the outside wall. At concert time there is also a small ticket stand and a table with cds on sale.
If you want to venture there by car and do not have a driver, you can try park along Tahrir Street, but probably your best bet is the big parking lot in Falaki Square. You'll still have to walk a bit longer than if you take the metro, but it is an interesting area to walk in.
The hall itself looks like a converted shop or garage (that probably is what it actually was) and hosts about 100 people on neatly arranged stools. At the performance I assisted to voices and instruments were not amplified, and the sound, given how small is the hall, was good. There are toilet facilities and it is (thankfully) forbidden to smoke inside. Tickets can be bought at the entrance and sell for 20 LE.

El Tanbura Hall: 30A, El Balaqsa St., Abdin
For additional information call 010 50995354 or email
El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music has a website and a facebook page.


  1. Actually, the hall used to be a cafe. There is also a small store in the back where you can buy different sizes of the simsimiyya, the lyre instrument characteristic of the Canal zone music. Visit the website to get more info on the instruments. The music, the neighborhood are wonderfully genuine!

  2. is this the same hall in front of el Hussain where Tanura or Sufi dance is conducted?
    I mean Wakalat el Ghouri??

  3. No Nasreen, it is not the same venue. El Dammah Theatre is in Abdin, not far from Falaki Square. If you read the article about the venue on the blog (the same you have commented on)till the end, you will get a good idea on how to get there, both by car and by public transportation. Best