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

Friday, November 30, 2012


The 35th edition of the Cairo International Film Festival took off yesterday and will go on till Thursday, December 6, 2012 at different venues throughout the city.
As usual the festival offers a selection of pretty good movies from all over the world, and for most of them this is the only chance you'll get of seeing them in a movie theatre in Cairo, so don't miss the chance.

For more information and a full program of screenings, click here.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Benefit Concert for Syrian Refugees at El Gomhouria Theatre

Culture Resource (Al Mawred Al Thaqafy), in collaboration with the Cairo Opera House, will present a benefit concert on Saturday December 8, 2012 at El Gomhouria Theater. All proceeds will be dedicated to supporting Syrian refugees in Egypt and will be put in the Ministry of Finance bank account 600/600 – for helping Syrian refugees in the neighboring countries, number 7/81600/450/9.

The concert will feature the renowned Egyptian musician Abdou Dagher and his ensemble, the master Egyptian oud player Hazem Chahine, Syrian flautist and composer Naissam Jalal, and Sulyman Erguner of Turkey.

Concert starts at 8:00 pm.
Ticket price are 100 and 200 EGP

For more information please visit

Monday, November 19, 2012

FAYROUZ KARAWYA concert postponed

I am sorry for not having posted earlier but due to the tragic event that caused the postponement this must have been quite a last minute decision and I came to know about it only yesterday evening.
The concert by Fayrouz Karawya scheduled to take place on Thursday 17 November 2012 at El Genaina Theater, has been postponed to Thursday 22 November at 8:30 PM to mourn the innocent children who died in a fatal bus-train collision in Assiut.

For more information click here to get to the event facebook page.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

DIA MAKEEN Exhibition at Al Mustakbal Library

Dia Makeen Draws the Egyptian Countryside in 35 Paintings Introduced in "Helwa Ya Balady" Exhibition

In a unique show that reflects a new artistic view on Egypt’s landscapes and the countryside in every detail, Dia Makeen will showcase 35 paintings that were drawn with his hands based on various standards, while using different types of materials and painting tools. The vernissage of the exhibition will take place at Al Mustakbal Library, on Sunday November 25, 2012 at 7:00 pm.

This exhibition is the artist’s 35th exhibition. Dia Makeen is well-known for his passion for the Egyptian countryside which has been shown in his paintings over the years. Dia Makeen will continue to explore the magic of the Egyptian countryside in the upcoming exhibition.
Exhibition will run till December 2, 2012, daily from 12:00 PM to 9:00 PM

Location: Al Mustakbal Library; 123 Gesr El Sues, After Maryland Park, End of Al Sibaaq St., Heliopolis, Cairo.

For more information click here (artist facebook page) and here (exhibition facebook page)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

DANCESTOCK at the Cairo Jazz Club

Four Wednesdays, Four Local and Four International Dance Sensations, only at one place…
Cairo Jazz Club presents DANCESTOCK, an electrifying dance extravaganza starting from Wednesday November 21, 2012 and making its final stop on Wednesday December 12, 2012.
All performances start at 10:00 PM

Dancestock Wednesday November 21
Aly B - Tech House, Nu-disco
Dan Healy (UK) - Deep Tech House

Dancestock Wednesday November 28
Tamer Auf - Tech, Deep House, Electro
Oscar De Rivera (Spain) - Deep, Tech, Tribal House

Dancestock Wednesday December 5
Misty & Hafez - Tech House, Nu-disco
Patrick Hagenaar (Holland) - Tech, Funky House

Dancestock Wednesday December 12
Wetrobots 3 Bosaina - Electronic
DJ Ashibah (Denmark) - Groovy, Deep, Tech House

This is a guest list ONLY event so reservations are a must.
For reservations please contact 010 68804767. Reservation lines open daily from 5:00 PM
Cairo Jazz Club LLC |197, 26th July St., Agouza (Sphinx Sq)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

NUBANOUR at El Dhamma Theater

El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music invites you to enjoy a night with the Black Pearls, NUBANOUR, tonight Thursday November 15, 2012 at 9:00 PM at El Dammah Theater (formerly Al Tanbura Hall).

Tickets at the counter 30 EGP. Tickets by reservation 20 EGP (The reservation will be cancelled at 9:00 PM).
For more information please visit
For reservations: or call 011 243 66 241 / 011 50 99 5354  / 0223926768

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


To all photography lovers out there ...

(Click on the image to enlarge)

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

PHOTOCAIRO 5 - A contemporary art project in Downtown Cairo

PhotoCairo 5 (More out of curiosity than conviction - A contemporary art project in Downtown Cairo) opens tomorrow, Wednesday November 14, 2012 at 8:00 PM simultaneously at the Townhouse Factory Space, at the Contemporary Image Collective, and at the Shopfront of Mahmoud Bassiouny street in Downtown Cairo and runs until Monday December 17.

PhotoCairo 5 is a large-scale contemporary art project organised by CIC and curated by Mia Jankowicz that explores the notion of paradigm shift.
PhotoCairo 5 is about ways in which reality is splintered and shifts of subjectivity are made. Involving international and local, emerging and established artists, this exhibition explores the ability of art to trigger affective responses within the viewer.
PhotoCairo 5 explores forces at play in reshaping reality, such as paranoia, the act of recognition, and altered states of consciousness. Bodies, materials and knowledges radically unreconciled to their political, architectural, institutional surroundings appear across the show: from the tale of a hysterical dancing spree near the site of the European Parliament, to an impossible monument to the revolution, and the absurd power dynamics of a re-enacted citizen's arrest gone wrong.

The project takes its title from a passing comment in Harun Farocki’s Videograms of a Revolution, in which existing footage of the Romanian Revolution of 1989 is narrated with attention to the position and motivations of the person filming. The comment refers to the decision – more out of curiosity than conviction – of a state TV camera operator to ‘glance’ the camera sideways at an emerging protest, against instructions. Farocki’s treatment of the material calls attention to this gesture over the depicted event. If art is to handle 'revolutionary acts', here the camera operator's innocent curiosity and bodily uncertainty takes the place of grand representational gestures, yet crucially, allow us to witness the awakening of a radical reality.

For a complete programme of events and maps of the venues, click here.
If you want to know more, at a glance, or you care for an Arabic version, click here.  


After the extensive field work in Alexandria the „Alexandria Streets Project“ will make its European debut on Sunday November 18 2012 at 11:00 AM at TAK, Prinzenstraße 85F, Berlin, Germany.
The curators Berit Schuck and Julia Tieke (Berlin), Caram Kapp (Spring Lessons, Berlin / international) and Omar Hatem (Radio Tram, Alexandria) will hold a discussion about the Egyptian radio landscape and the situation of online radios. The discussion will be moderated by Dr. Sonja Hegasy, ZMO (Berlin).
The matinee will continue at 1:00 PM with a sonic expedition. Berit Schuck and Julia Tieke will present audio pieces and the sonic map of Alexandria which they have realized on the basis of field recordings and interviews with activists, architects, musicians, taxi drivers and other residents of the city.
The unlucky ones who cannot be in Berlin will see what it's all about on November 29 when all twenty audio pieces of the “Alexandria Streets Project” will be published on the project's webpage
Still in Berlin, on Thursday November 22, Berit Schuck and Julia Tieke will talk about the concept „sonic map“ and the visualization of Alexandria's soundscape by the graphic design team EPS51 within the exhibition „Right-To-Left“ at Kunstquartier Bethanien. The event will be moderated by Marcus Gammel, Deutschlandradio Kultur (Berlin).

The project will then travel to Egypt with the launch of the sonic map of the „Alexandria Streets Project“ at the Goethe-Institut in Alexandria, 10 El Batalsa Street, Azarita on Thursday November 29, 2012. And on Saturday December 8, 2012 the „Alexandria Streets Project“ will be presented in Cairo at the Remix@100COPIES Music Space, 22 Talaat Harb Street, Downtown.

For more information contact:

"Alexandria Streets Project" is curated by Berit Schuck und Julia Tieke, organised by west-östlicher diwan e.V. / arts programme (Berlin) and funded by Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations (ifa) in collaboration with the Goethe-Institut Alexandria (Alexandria), Radio Tram (Alexandria), AGORA Arts & Culture (Alexandria), Spring Lessons (Berlin / international), EPS51 & Uqbar e.V. (Berlin).

Monday, November 12, 2012

TOLERANCE DAYS at El Sawi Culturewheel

In the framework of the "TOLERANCE DAYS", El Sawi Cultural Centre is presenting concerts from MASCARA on Tuesday November 13 at 8:30 PM, ANA MASRY on Wednesday November 14 at 8:30 PM and MASAR EGBARY on Friday November 16, 2012 at 8:00 PM.
Below please find the press release of this laudable initiative:

El Sawy Culturewheel launches a new campaign the aim of which is to promote and educate about tolerance (appreciation of differences). In the framework of the “Tolerance Days” gender, religion and culture aspect of tolerance will be discussed. The celebration starts on November 13 and lasts until November 16, 2012 when Masar Eghbari gives a concert on the occasion of the International Day for Tolerance. Mascara, Ana Masry and El Sawy Puppet Theatre are the artists who will also support the Tolerance Days. The campaign is conducted together with UN Egypt and NGOs supporting the idea of tolerance. UNESCO Cairo Office speaker will participate at the event.

Tolerance is respect, acceptance and appreciation of the rich diversity of our world's cultures, our forms of expression and ways of being human. It is fostered by knowledge, openness, communication, and freedom of thought, conscience and belief. Tolerance is harmony in difference. It is not only a moral duty; it is also a political and legal requirement. Tolerance, the virtue that makes peace possible, contributes to the replacement of the culture of war by a culture of peace[1].

The International Day for Tolerance is a good reason to remind people of this precious value. That is why Sakia is organizing Tolerance Days with many attractions such as concerts, workshops, booths and open discussions. During the three days in a row speakers from different fields will present their know-how, facts, data and useful tools and initiatives concerning gender, religious and cultural areas. Apart from that experts will be working on the recommendations on how we all might help to overcome the intolerance problem in Egypt. What is also worth mentioning is the fact that in Arabic there is no exact word that fully describes the meaning of tolerance (التسامح tasemah is more about the forgiveness). The way how language reflects culture will be also one of the issues discussed during the Tolerance Days.

El Sawy Culturewheel has built the coalition with the organizations both international and local dealing with tolerance problem in Egypt. The list of the partners supporting the Tolerance Campaign looks as follows: The Egyptian Center for Women's Rights, Swedish Institute, New Women Foundation, Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Liberty in Egypt, Centre for Egyptian Women's Legal Assistance, Ann Lindh Foundation, IBM Corporte Citizenship Department, UN Egypt.

The campaign will be inscribed in the Year of Listening in Sakia. In the past El Sawy Culturewheel launched many campaigns which raised the topic of awareness concerning the most troublesome problems in Egypt, starting from environment protection, water, helping the poor, through smoking, sexual harassment and finishing on reasonable use of fireworks or horns.

Egypt is the country of love and taking care of each other, but some people seem to forget about this value deriving from human rights. The desired outcome of the campaign is to prepare a common statement about tolerance and encourage Egyptians to be more tolerant and open-minded.

More information about the Tolerance Days is available on the website, and on the Tolerance Days fan page

[1] Declaration of Principles on Tolerance, Proclaimed and signed by the Member States of UNESCO on 16 November 1995,

(Click on image to enlarge)

Saturday, November 10, 2012

FAYROUZ KARAWYA at El Genaina Theater

FAYROUZ KARAWYA was born in the coastal city of Port Said in Egypt. Her relationship with music and singing started early in her life when one of her primary school’s nuns discovered her beautiful voice and asked her to join the school’s chorus. In 1994, she obtained a three-year diploma from the Institute of Arab Music in voice/oriental singing, reading musical notes, performance and composition for the lute. She was enrolled in the Cairo University School of Medicine where she developed a special interest in psychiatry and received her bachelor degree in 2003.
During her medical studies, Fayrouz performed only one song, in the Egyptian movie "The Secrets of Girls". Fayrouz’s desire to be a professional artist made her join the Misaharaty Independent Theatre Group as an assistant director, a musical editor and a leading singer. She performed in three plays “Sehraya”, “Hakawi El Haramlek”, and “Helw Masr”. At the same time, Fayrouz joined the “Center of Artistic Creativity” at the Cairo Opera House where she worked as an executive director and music editor for the ‘King Lear’ spectacle. Alongside her musical endeavours, she participated in the making of a documentary film, ‘Six girls’. She also wrote a script for a short-feature movie, “Sabah el Fol”, which brought her the Golden Eagle Prize, presented by Rotterdam’s Arab Film Festival in 2006 for its “extra-ordinary narrative skills”.
In April 2012, Fairuz Karawya released her first album entitled "Bara Menny ", which has won the best-selling album award in the famous shop Virgin Megastore in the week following the release.

FAYROUZ KARAWYA will be on stage at El Genaina Theater in Al Azhar Park on Saturday November 17, 2012 at 8:30 PM

For more info click here (facebook page)

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

EL TANBURA at El Dammah Theater

El Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music invites you to join El Tanbura Band before they embark for a tour of France that will touch the cities of Dijon, Montpellier, Strasbourg, and Paris among others.
El Tanbura will play tomorrow Thursday November 8, 2012 at El Dammah Theater (formerly El Tanbura Hall) at 9:00 PM

A quarter of a century ago, in the city of Port Said, a group of Damma and Simsimia artists undertook the responsibility to gather, keep, and revive this musical legacy which was under the threat of loss and vanishing. These artists responded to Zakaria Ibrahim's call for establishing a new band to achieve those goals. This was the beginning of El Tanbura band.

In the first five years the band successfully managed to gather 20 hours of that precious legacy which is orally transmitted through consecutive generations and had never been documented before. The band documented it in writing, recording, video, and photography. Very important are the live performances which have continued over 24 years and through which the band presents regular weekly shows on the beach of Port Said. These shows are presented free of charge to the people of the city whose ancestors had helped in creating this special heritage.

The band also presents two annual festivals held in the city streets: one is held in the spring and the other on Victory Day, December 23, which commemorates the peoples' victory over the tri-partite attack of France, Britain and Israel in 1956. The resistance songs which the people created during this attack and after have become an important part of the band's repertoire. The band has continued to compose new patriotic songs for other situations and events such as the Israeli occupation of Palestine, the American invasion of Iraq, the 50th anniversary of the nationalization of the Suez Canal, the war of 1956, the revolution of 25th January during which the band performed often in Tahrir Square, and, most recently, the first anniversary of this same revolution for which they composed the "Aadi El Dalma" song.

In 2003, under the direction and encouragement of El Mastaba, the members of El Tanbura established a school in Port Said for teaching a new generation this art of singing, percussion, instruments and dancing. Young Tanbura, as it is called, is run by Mohsen El Ashry, and this young band has developed to the point where they perform with a high level of professionalism in Port Said, Cairo, Alexandria and other places.

The ticket costs 30 EGP and is delivered at the entrance. But you can reserve it in advance and get it for 20 EGP only by writing at or calling 011 50995354 or 0223926768. Reservations will be cancelled at 9:00 PM.
Door opens at 8:30 PM.
For more information please visit

RIMA KHCHEICH at the Geneina Theatre

Al Mawred Al Thaqafy will bring the renowned Lebanese singer Rima Khcheich to Cairo for a performance on Friday November 16, 2012 at 8:30 PM at the Geneina Theatre in Al Azhar Park.

Rima Khcheich started her singing career at the age of nine as a soloist with the children's choir at the 'Arabic Cultural Club', and later evolved into a solo performance with the 'Beirut Oriental Troop for Arabic Music' under the supervision and direction of Maestro Salim Sahab. Rima studied the tradition of classical Arabic singing at The Lebanese National Higher Conservatory of Music' in Beirut, and her efforts were supported by her father Kamel Khcheich who encouraged her to memorize and master classics from the Arabic music heritage like Muwashahat, Adwar and other styles. She has performed Zakariah Ahmad, Al-Kassabji, Sayyed Darwish, Kamel Al Khal'i and Muhammad Abdel Wahab, amongst others. In 2006, Rima Khsheish released her debut solo album, entitled 'Yalalalli' which not only reveals a deeply emotional and original musical expression, but also stands as a note of rebellion against the dictates of the commercial music market. Currently, Rima teaches Oriental singing at the Lebanese National Higher Conservatory of Music and is invited on a yearly basis to Massachusetts, USA where she teaches voice and classical Arabic singing at Mount Holyoke College under the framework of the Arabic Music Retreat program directed by renowned musician and composer Simon Shaheen.

For more info please click here (facebook page)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


The 21st edition of the Festival and Conference of Arab Music will be inaugurated in the Main Hall of Cairo Opera House on Wednesday November 7, 2012. The festival will continue until Thursday November 15 with daily performances taking place in the Mail and Small Halls of Cairo Opera House and at the Gomhouria Theatre.

As usual a program in English has not seen the light as yet (or if it has it has been kept a well guarded secret) and non Arabic speakers who wish to have a taste of Arab music are left with the only option to pick up an evening at random and hope that they find what they were looking for. It is such a shame, because in the past the festival has offered so many good performances (you can get hold of the inexpensive cd recordings of previous editions in the lobby of the Main Hall at concert time). I believe, this lack of promotion is also a disservice to the artists themselves that would benefit from a larger exposure. CLEG has been complaining every year, but nothing has changed. But I'll insist:

Dear Cairo Opera House,
Since you are taking the laudable and considerable challenge of organizing this festival, why not publicizing it better (it gets far less advertisement than other events) and provide a nice bilingual program with performers bio and a background on the various forms of Arabic music that will be played? This will be a great service to music lovers in Egypt, and will contribute to dispel the belief that Arabic music is only the clanky shrills we get out of the feluccas cruising on the beautiful Nile.

PS: If anybody gets hold of a program, please forward it to me and I will gladly publish it

Monday, November 5, 2012

"I WISH I WAS EGYPTIAN" by Le Théâtre des Amandiers (France)

On Tuesday November 6 and Wednesday November 7, 2012 at 8:00 PM, the Gomhouria Theatre, in partnership with the International Relations Office of the Egyptian Ministry of Culture, the Cairo Opera and the French Institute, will host the French theatre company Le Théâtre des Amandiers who will present the play "I wish I was Egyptian".

Adapted from the famous novel "Chicago" written by Alaa El Aswany and staged by Jean-Louis Martinelli, the play takes the audience to a little Egyptian community whithin the University of Chicago.
The play denounces the Police State, the collusion between Egyptian and American secret services, as well as the use of religion as a tool to manipulate. In pre-Revolution Egypt, some of the themes dealt with by the author were potentially dangerous. Jean-Louis Martinelli is offering a fluid and clever stage adaptation in a theatrical narrative punctuated by songs. The play explores the intimate world of nine Egyptian migrants, damaged by the psychological harm done by an emigration resulting from the repressive policy of the Egyptian state.

Played in French, subtitled in Arabic
Free entrance.

A performance will also take place at the Sayed Darwish Theatre in Alexandria on Thursday November 8 at 8:00 PM.

Saturday, November 3, 2012

ANASTASIA TERENKOVA at the Manasterly Palace

Another evening of great classical music in Cairo!
The young pluri-awarded Russian pianist ANASTASIA TERENKOVA (for a biography of the performer and the complete programme of the evening click here) will be performing in the second concert of the International Music Center season on Sunday November 11, 2012 at 8:00 PM.
On the programme music from Scarlatti, Chopin, Liszt, and, "as the cherry on the cake", the sublime "Pictures at an Exhibition" from Modest Mussorgsky. This is a perfect programme for music buffs and for people who wish to familiarize themselves with classical music alike. Give it a go, am sure you'll not regret it!

Please remember that this concert season marks the return of the IMC concerts to their original venue, the Manasterly Palace in Manial.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Cairo Jazz Club November Schedule

The Cairo Jazz Club programme of the month of November features Basheer, Ashara Gharby, Wust El Balad, Salalem, Adam Miller, Los Compadres, and Massar Egbari among others.

Click here for the complete programme.