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.

This is a private, independent, nonprofit endeavour. This blog was started in August 2008 by Cairowanderer who has been running it solo up to May 2011. Since then Cairene Beat contributes as well to the blog. If you have any comment, tip, or information you think might be relevant for the blog, please write to or

Read about Cairo Live Events Guide on The Daily News Egypt

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Bikya Bookcafe in Nasr City

I am not paid to do advertising, and I do normally write about places only after I have visited them and collected good impressions, but I was somehow intrigued by the entrepreneurial courage and enthusiasm of the team behind the Bikya Bookcafe so I decided that they do deserve a post that will hopefully bring some of you readers to this new venue to try it out. And, on the top of it, as far as I know there are no venues of this kind in Nasr City, a place that attracts out-of-neighborhood guests mostly for City Stars and a couple of good restaurants.
So, what is (or rather what's going to be, as it opens on March 3rd) Bikya Bookcafe? I'll leave it to them to entice you:

'If you just love the history and antiquity of a second-hand book or just looking for something a little bit cheaper but don't relish the hellish markets for second-hand books, then you should definitely check us out. You can browse our wide selection of books, you can relax and read an afternoon away in a place so cosy, you'll never want to leave.
And what best accompanies a book? A tasty treat. We have coffee, tea, tarts, sandwiches and baked goodies... you name it. We also take book requests, so if we don't have it, we'll do our best to find it for you. And if you're looking to sell, well, look no more!
There's never a dull moment here, so be sure to keep your schedule free for all our events. If you're a fan of music, comedy, want to learn something new, or debate a subject, you're always welcome to come join us.'

Our Opening weekend starts on Thursday the 3rd of March, with various local performances and lots of surprises!
Stay updated, as to the exact schedule to be announced soon, on both facebook and twitter:!/bikyabookcafe

Working hours: 10:30 am till 11:00 pm
Address: 23 Dr Zaki Hassan st., off El Nasr Street, Nasr City.

Telephone 02-24046688

So, good luck to Bikya Bookcafe, the first post-January 25th new cultural venue to open that I know of. And that in itself deserves this post!

El Sawi Cultural Center program update

El Sawi program seems to be going through some hitches, some say due to Mohamed El Sawi appointment as Minister of Culture. If you are planning to attend any of the events planned at the centre these days, I suggest you give them a call first to check. Tel.: 27368881 or 27366178

Friday, February 25, 2011

WEEKLY AGENDA MUSIC Feb. 26 to Mar. 4, 2011

Saturday, February 26, 2011
- Naseer Shamma (Oud) in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- “The 7th Cross” , a concert with Tide of Septum and Wicked Warden (Heavy Metal) in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 7:30 PM
- Beshir (Modern Arabic Folk) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM
- Resident DJ at After Eight from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM

Sunday, February 27, 2011
- Nass Makan in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- Amr Salah Trio feat. Noha Fekry (Jazz) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM
- Resident DJ at After Eight from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM

Monday, February 28, 2011
- Massar Egbari (Rock) in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Center in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- Musica Group with Nevine Allouba (Soprano) present a selection of Disney songs in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- DJ Slim (Progressive House) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM
- Resident DJ at After Eight from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM

Tuesday, March 1, 2011
- Zaman Band (Contemporary Egyptian Music) in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- Dj Dina El Ghareeb at the After Eight Club, 7:00 PM
- Deep Preachers (Rock'n'Blues, Soul & Funk) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM new

Wednesday, March 2, 2011
- Maamoun El Meligy (Arabic music) in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- Al-Ghouri Tannoura Dance Group at the Ghouri Caravansaray, 8:30 PM (Performances are due to restart today but at time of posting there was yet no confirmation that the time would remain the same as before. If I come to know of any change I will post it)
- Resident DJ at After Eight from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM
- DJ Rami (Boogie Night) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM new
- Mazaher Ensemble (Zar music) at the Makan, 9:00 PM new 

Thursday, March 3, 2011
- El Tanbura (Folk Music from Port Said) in the El Tanbura Hall, 8:30 PM
- V.I.P. (Afro-American music) in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:30 PM
- Resident DJ at After Eight from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM
- Michelle Rounds (Jazz) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM new

Friday, March 4, 2011
 - Ashek El Nahr El Khaled (Egyptian music) in Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:30 PM
- Ayamna El Helwa (Arabic music) in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 9:00 PM
- Resident DJ at After Eight from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM
- DJ Migo (House) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM new

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Maadi Revolution Festival - Postponed

Due to the tense situation in Maadi (click here if you want to know more) the organizers of  the Maadi Revolution Festival have decided to postpone tomorrow's event to a later date.

Maadi Revolution Festival

An event to commemorate the victims of the January 25 revolution will take place in, surprise, surprise ... Maadi's  Victoria Square  on Friday February 25, 2011 starting at 12:00 PM (noon, to be clear!).
The Maadi Revolution Festival lineup include Cairokee, Percussion Jam, Shady Ahmed, Rash Radio, Salalem, Uss w Laz2, Ahmed El Haggar, City Band, and Ramez Youssef.

For more information, click here.

Michelle Rounds in Luxor

The jazz singer Michelle Rounds will join the line-up of artists performing at the Egypt Moving Forward event in Luxor on Saturday February 26, 2011.
An additional reason to consider a last-minute holiday weekend in Luxor ...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Egypt Moving Forward in Luxor on Saturday February 26, 2011

As kindly pointed out by some readers, February 26 is a Saturday and not a Thursday as erroneously written in the previous post. Sorry for the oversight!

Egypt Moving Forward ... in Luxor

This coming Thursday (sorry!) Saturday February 26, 2011 an impressive event is due to take place in Luxor Temple Park to celebrate Egyptian music and culture, and welcome the world to the new Egypt (organizer's words).
The event, organized by a non-profit initiative called Egypt Moving Forward, will start at 3:00 PM and will feature performances of Nubian music and Sufi dancing, and a concert from the Hurgada based British/Swedish rock group 13 Daze.

For more information, click here to be redirected to the excellent website prepared by the event organizers.

Friday, February 18, 2011

WEEKLY AGENDA MUSIC Feb. 19 to Feb. 25, 2011

Saturday, February 19, 2011
- Cairokee and Salalem (Egyptian Rock) “For the love of Egypt” in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- Bluenotes Band (Blues) in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- El Dor El Awal (Oriental music) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM

Sunday, February 20, 2011
- The Great American Songbook (Jazz) in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- The Riff Band (Jazz) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM

Monday, February 21, 2011
- Ana Masry (Contemporary Egyptian music) in the River Hall of El Sawi Cultural Center in Zamalek, 8:30 PM
- DJ Ouzo (Progressive House) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM

Tuesday, February 22, 2011
- Habashi and the Jazz Caterers (Jazz) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM
- Nass Makan (Jazz Fusion) at the Makan Centre 9:00
- Dj Dina El Ghareeb at the After Eight Club, 7:00 PM

Wednesday, February 23, 2011
- Ali El Haggar (Egyptian Music) in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 9:00 PM
- Mazaher Ensemble at the Makan, 9:00
- DJ Amr Hosny (Boogie Night) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM

Thursday, February 24, 2011
- The Riff Band (Jazz) in the Wisdom Hall of El Sawi Cultural Centre in Zamalek, 8:00 PM
- Screwdriver (Rock’n’Roll) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM
- El Tanbura (Folk Music from Port Said) in the El Tanbura Hall, 8:30 PM

Friday, February 25, 2011
- El Tanbura (Folk Music from Port Said) in the El Tanbura Hall, 8:30 PM
- Salalem (Egyptian music) at the After Eight Club, 10:30 PM (was hoping, ... but not yet!)

- DJ Amir Sharara and Digital Monkeys (Progressive House) at the Cairo Jazz Club, 6:30 PM

After Eight is open!

Another good news: the mythical After Eight in Downtown Cairo is open. They are not yet offering the usual live bands program but you can enjoy their DJ music from 7:00 PM every evening.
I'll keep you posted when the live concerts start again.

Cairo Jazz Club reopens today

Another good news! The Cairo Jazz Club is due to reopen today Friday February 18, 2011 with an evening of Electro music, courtesy of DJ Fahmy and Samba. Doors open at 6:30 PM and close at 11:00 PM.

Doors will open at 6:30 PM as long as curfew is in place. That's actually an interesting move. I do not remember how many times I changed my mind about going to the CJC during the week for fear of feeling like an amoeba the morning after. Now I can even get there straight after office for an aperitivo, enjoy a concert, and be home at an acceptable hour!

You will find the Cairo Jazz Club program of next week on the Weekly Agenda that I am planning to post by this evening (still waiting for some information :-)

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Open Air concert in Tahrir Square

Do not ask me exactly where, and do not get upset with CLEG if this is not true, but I just received a message that El Tanbura, Ali El Haggar, and Azza Balbaa will perform tomorrow Friday February 17, 2010 in Tahrir Square, starting 4:00 PM.
There were insistent voices at the beginning of last week that Mohamed Mounir would perform in Tahrir on Friday but then, after the square was cleared around midweek, voices started to circulate that the concert was cancelled. I am a bit perplexed therefore at the news that another concert will take place in the square, but I thought I will post it nevertheless, ... just in case you want to give it a try.

El Sawi and Cairo Opera House updates

A success story and a sad story. While El Sawi Culturewheel is more active than ever and his founder Mohamed El Sawi deservedly celebrated (click here to read a very interesting interview with him on Ahram Online), the Cairo Opera House is still closed and in the midst of a row between artists and the management (click here to read an article on this issue on Al Masry Al Youm).

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Project Yourself

The 11th Cairo Open Mic. Night will take place on Friday February 18, 2011 from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM at Darb 1718. For those not familiar with the concept, this is an evening where everybody who has an artistic attitude and the willingness (or courage) to share it with others can register and get his/her 5 minutes of glory.
I have to admit that I have never attended this event before but from what I heard, there is a great atmosphere and is really good fun. Those who want to know more shall click here to get to the facebook page of the event, and here to be redirected to an interview on Al-Ahram Weekly with Maryam El-Quessny, the founder of the project.

El Tanboura Hall reopens on Thursday, February 17

Another good news. El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music will reopen El Tanboura Hall with a performance of El Tanboura on Thursday, February 17, 2011 at 8:30 PM. Please go and support them if you can. It will be not only a great concert (in case you still do not know them), but also a great way to support the "return to normality" process. As El Mastaba website seem to be temporarily not available, I quote herebelow, for those of you who are not in their mail list, the English part of the message CLEG has received :

"We are at the beginning of a new day in the history of Egypt in which every Egyptian can now claim justice, respect, not on the bases of wealth or power, but on their membership in the human community. This new day offers unprecedented opportunities for free expression, innovation and experimentation and the role of creative expression as a model for social change can now be realized.

In 2000, Zakaria Ibrahim established El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music. The Center builds on his own efforts of several decades to rescue the heritage of Egyptian folk music, bringing it back to its previous glory and recapturing the major role it had always played in the daily life of Egyptians. The Center also works to raise the status of the traditional musician whose music and creativity have been marginalized and compromised by state and tourism agendas.

Historically, Egyptian folk music came from the people and reflected the every-day life of the Egyptians. It shared with those people their joy and pain, their victories and defeats and was always a mirror of all the major happenings in Egypt.      Today El Mastaba follows this same road as it works on renewing the national memory and emphasizing the idea of belonging and working to recapture the roots of the Egyptian character, all of which come to life through the folk music.

For these reasons, El Mastaba played an active role in the Egyptian Revolution, bringing the groups under its umbrella to Tahrir Square to share their music in five evening concerts on the stages built in the square. The three bands that participated in the concerts were all chosen from the Suez Canal area, as their music has always been a symbol for peoples' resistance. El Mastaba presented the 'Hinna' band from Suez, 'El Waziry' band from Ismailia and the famous 'El Tanboura' from Port Said.

And now, to continue our celebrations of the new era in our country, El Tanboura will resume its Thursday performances in El Tanboura Hall, starting this week on the 17th of February at 8.30 p.m.

We also propose that all civil organizations working in art and culture meet and start a dialogue on the new opportunities open to cultural work under the new realities of freedom of speech. As organizations and individuals working in the field of culture, we should now work together for a new future for our country, one that we create ourselves and that is not imposed on us.

We invite you to join us as we celebrate this new beginning and continue this journey together.
To see parts of El Tanboura's concert in Tahrir Square visit this link:

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Seems that the Cairo Opera House is not going to open tonight!

I just got to know from reliable sources that, despite the publication of the program on the website, the Cairo Opera House will not open tonight, Tuesday February 15, 2011, nor is at the moment foreseen when it will.
I guess it has to do with with the demonstrations by COH staff and artists. Click here if you want to know more.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Live events are back!

The first live concerts of the new Egyptian era will take place on Tuesday, February 15, 2011.
El Sawi in cooperation with El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music will present the Darawish Abu El Gheit Troupe (Religious Inshad) at 8:00 PM in the premises of El Sawi in Zamalek.
The Cairo Opera House presents the Vienna Sound Orchestra at the Gomhouria Theatre and a Chamber Music recital by the violinist Mahmoud Osman in the Small Hall of the Cairo Opera House.
For cinema lovers the Open Air Theatre of COH will resume his Cine Club. On show the movie "Inception" (USA, 2011).
All COH performances start at 8:00 PM.
For the Cairo Opera House program of the rest of the week, click here.

Saturday, February 12, 2011


Peace, love, art, and prosperity to all.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Reinbursment of COH tickets

A quick note to let you know that the office at the Cairo Opera House where you can ask for refund of tickets of cancelled performances is open from 10:30 AM to 2:00 PM.
For information call 27390114.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Music from the Square

I would like to share with you this lovely article appeared today on Al Masry Al Youm webpage. You must be brave to enjoy live music in Cairo nowadays.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Venues Update

Please click here to find updates (from Ahram Online) about the Cairo Opera House, El Sawi, and venues managed by the Cultural Development Fund.
Of the venues not covered in the article I can add that, based on the information I received, the French Cultural Center in Mounira has not been damaged and is waiting for the curfew to be lifted to resume its programme, the Cairo Jazz Club is undergoing maintenance works and is closed till further notice, Makan is closed till further notice, The Rawabet Theatre and Darb 1718 are planning to reopen in March.
If somebody has news about After 8, El Tanboura Hall, and other venues not covered, please send me a message.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Cairo Opera House closed for the month of February

Dear readers, I have been struggling to make a post ever since the internet connection was reactivated, but everything I thought of seemed so trivial compared to the enormity of what was happening on the streets of Cairo. Even the mail and the comments boxes have been eerily empty for the past ten days, as a clear sign that everybody's thoughts were somewhere else, far removed from arts and culture.
But we all know how important culture and art, any kind of art, are, and how dreary is a life without them. It can be a peasant song, a tune on the oud, or an orchestral suite. It could be a painting, a calligraphy masterpiece, a handmade straw basket. It could be just one of the myriad of marvellous buildings that this city wraps in its wide embrace. Whatever and wherever, a human being needs something to turn its eyes and ears to, and experience feelings of peace and contentment. It might be a small step, it might look silly and trivial, but I am glad I have received three messages and two comments today, and that convinced me that it was time to start posting again, hoping for peaceful times to come.

I wish I could start with a better news, but it is a useful one nonetheless. I have just been informed that all performances at the Cairo Opera House are suspended for the month of February. A telephone number has been set up for information about the refund of tickets already purchased: 27390114.