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