Arts & Culture

Body Artist Basma Shaheen Creates 3 Dimensional Human Canvases

Monday August 19, 2019                               By: Eman Ahmed

49629764_423191544887393_123691115344822272_nWith passion for painting and a talent in special effects makeup, Body Artist Basma Shahin is revolutionizing the art scene in Egypt through her 3D human canvases. A graduate from the Faculty of Fine Arts in 2019, Shahin had worked as a cinematic makeup artists on the set of some short movies and plays. While in college, she developed a passion for Body Art, and started studying the works of western artists in this field….continue reading..

Film Composer Hayat Selim Obtains a Master’s Degree from the Royal College of Music

Tuesday,  August 13, 2019

Pre-recording session of orchestral pieceFilm Composer and singer-songwriter Hayat Selim received her master’s in Composition for Screen from the Royal College of Music, a course ranked as number one in Europe and number two in the world in film music composition. Hayat has been an active media composer since 2015, starting off in the Egyptian media scene until she moved to London in 2017 to pursue her masters. She started her music path since childhood...continue reading…

From Monroe to Rostom: The ‘Femme Fatale’ in Hollywood and Egyptian Cinema

Wednesday August 7, 2019                         By: Mirna Abdulaal

Shadia, Samia Gamal, Soad Hosny, Hind Rostom, and Nadia Lutfi…these are names of female actresses and dancers that evoke contradicting feelings for many Egyptians today. While they are highly praised and watched for their art and performances on screen, their charm, beauty and bold sensuality is often seen as dangerous and threatening to society’s morals. They were, in other words, the ‘femme fatales’ of Egyptian cinema – a concept that is still hard to define and understand when it comes to explaining women in art…..continue reading…

Is Anyone Listening To ‘These Girls’?

Tuesday July 23, 2019                        By: Alexandra Kinias

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Maryam cuts her hair short to look like boys to protect herself from rape.

In the streets of Cairo, stray dogs and cats often compete with the hungry homeless for scraps of food salvaged from the garbage, or for a spot to spend the night, let it be under a parked car, a construction site or a sidewalk. The phenomenon is not unique to the mega city, where many of its 18 million inhabitants live in expensive homes and mansions. However, what makes the picture gloomier in Cairo than elsewhere, is that a high percentage of its homeless are children under the age of ten.…continue reading…

Amira El Masry Launches WANAS to Integrate Sudanese Children in Egypt through Art

Thursday July 18, 2019                      By: May Allam

49124840_2095294517250662_1931312695542284288_nBelieving in the importance of art in developing societies, Amira El Masry, utilized her passion for art to support Sudanese children living in Egypt. The 20-year-old economy student, launched WANAS initiative in cooperation with the American University in Cairo to integrate and empower Sudanese children in Egyptian society through art. The initiative aims to promote a culture of dialogue, the value ​​of acceptance of the others and peaceful coexistence. The initiative accomplishes its objectives by offering the children various workshops in…continue reading…

Fine Arts Student Dedicates Her Graduation Project to Fight FGM

Sunday July 14, 2019                   By: Manal Hany

BE KIND TO WOMEN

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“Be Kind to Women” is the title of the graduation project of Fatma Mahmoud Raslan, 23, student at the Faculty of Fine Arts – Helwan University, Department of Mural Painting.The project is about combating violence against women and its negative impact on their mental, physical and emotional health. Fatma chose female genital mutilation (fgm) to be the subject of her graduation project. She used photographs of girls and symbols of violence against women associated with fgm...continue reading…

Malak Mehrez Redesigns the Identification System of Egypt’s Governorates

Monday July 1, 2019                 By: Alexandra Kinias

65712511_375173943357036_2149940626991349760_n.pngCity emblems can be traced to twelfth-century Europe. During this time, coats of arms were also sewed on flags and moulded on the shields of kings and nobles. That’s how they identified their territories and recognized their enemies in the battle fields. The designs of these emblems always reflected something unique and significant about the territory and its owner or ruler. And thousands of years prior to that, different regions in ancient Egypt had their own identification presented by the crowns of their kings….continue reading…

Egyptian Mezzo-Soprano Farrah El Dibany Receives Prix Lyrique 2019 de l’AROP

Wednesday June 6, 2019                          By: Kismat Mokhtar

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Photo credit @Julien Benhamou

Mezzo-Soprano Farrah El-Dibany received “Prix Lyrique 2019 de l’AROP” Award by the Paris Opera House, to become the first Egyptian and Arab to ever receive this award and to sing at the prestigious Paris Opera House. “Prix Lyrique de l’AROP is awarded annually to a female and a male Uprising Opera Singers. The award ceremony was held at Opera Garnier (Paris Opera) where Farah...continue reading…

At Night They Dance – Film Review

Monday June 3, 2019                  By: Alexandra Kinias

antd-posterAt Night, They Dance, exposes a slice of the Egyptian society that lives and works in its shadows. The title successfully depicts the essence of the documentary. The belly dancing dynasty, which the documentary brings its story to life, revolves around the profession that its members performed at night. Reda, the 42 years old matriarch mother of seven, once a bellydancer herself,….continue reading…

Finding Nefertiti? 

Friday May 24, 2019                 WoE – Ahram Weekly

The statue of Nefertiti is pictured at 'Neues Museum' building in BerlinCould the mummy of the ancient Egyptian queen Nefertiti, wife of the Pharaoh Akhenaten, finally have been identified, asks Nevine El-Aref. The beautiful queen Nefertiti, wife of the monotheistic king Akhenaten, has always perplexed archaeologists. Nefertiti acquired unprecedented power during the first 12 years of the reign of her husband, and she occupied the throne alongside him and appeared nearly twice as often in reliefs as Akhenaten during the first five years of his reign. She continued to...continue reading…

Director Sharine Atif Wins the 2019 TriBeCa Film Festival Student Visionary Award

Monday  May 13, 2019                               By: Alexandra Kinias

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Photo credit Jebel Banat 

The Egyptian short film “Jebel Banat” (Girls’ Mountain) written and directed by Sharine Atif, won the Student Visionary Award at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival in New York. “Jebel Banat” is a tale of two Bedouin sisters who defied the tribal customs and traditions of their male-dominated nomadic community. Atif became intrigued by their story which she heard from the Bedouin guide…continue reading…

Egyptian Choreographer Karima Mansour Writes International Dance Day Message

Monday April 29, 2019                     By: WoE

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Photo by: Cairo Contemporary Dance Center

Dancer, choreographer and dance educator, Karima MANSOUR, Founder of MAAT Contemporary Dance Company, has been selected by the Executive Council of the International Theater Institute ITI to write the message for the International Dance Day. This global event is celebrated worldwide since its creation in 1982, on April 29, the anniversary of the birth of Jean-Georges Noverre (1727–1810), the creator of modern ballet….continue reading…

Nour Elnemr’s Fabrics Tell A Story of Hope and Happiness

Monday April 29, 2019                        By: Alexandra Kinias

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Art has a healing therapy. Whether you are an art connoisseur or an artist, wandering through an art gallery or producing your own art, a colorful painting or a unique design will have a therapeutic and soothing effect on you. But for the young passionate artist and entrepreneur Nourhan Elnemr, art is not merely strokes of a brush or a home decorative accessory, but also a social responsibility. With this belief, she launched her project “Fabrics of Hope” to shed light and raise awareness on…continue reading….

The Brief Chronicled History of The Girl: A Flash Fiction Story About FGM

Sunday April 21, 2019                        By: Riham Adly

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Art by Beatrice Florence Taylor 

Girl, before your father implanted you in your mother’s womb, before being assigned your X’s and not the salubrious Y’s, you were in the water, in the air, in the elements: a tri-atom that didn’t belong to any tribe, any clan, any Kabilah. In your first incarnation: You were given the name Mary. You splashed in the mud and played with Abdullah and Abel. You bathed in Central Eriteria’s River Mereb near your church,…continue reading..

Riham Shendy Revives Reading & Storytelling to Children in Colloquial Egyptian Dialect

Thursday March 21, 2019                    By: Riham Shendy

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As an intercultural couple living in the United States of America, my husband and I share strong aspirations to raise our children connected to their roots. It was important to us that our children spoke our mother-tongues to be able to communicate with their families and recognize and embrace their cultural heritages. Not to mention that being multilingual in a world that has become increasingly competitive would serve them well, especially that expertise in languages like French and English...continue reading…

Cartoonist Rasha Mahdy Draws to Empower Women

Thursday March 7, 2019                              ــ By: Alexandra Kinias

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Women empowerment art, especially cartoons, is gaining popularity and creating waves of change to women worldwide. Rasha Mahdy, apioneer woman in the field of editorial cartoons, is using her illustrations to advocate for and empower women, by focusing on the issues that hinder their growth.Since breaking into this field, women issues, rights, problems and challenges were among the major themes she addressed…continue reading…

She; Heroism, Magic and Beauty in the Everyday

Thursday 21 February 2019

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Paintings by the artists

For over a century, and since 1911, communities around the world gather annually on March 8thto celebrate International Women’s Day.  Events, concerts, art festivals and exhibitions by and for women are organized globally, to both celebrate women achievements and campaign for women equality, while also calling to close the gender parity gap…continue reading…

A Possible Utopia, Mervat Abdel-Nasser’s Attempt to Resurrect Ancient Egypt

Wednesday February 13, 2019               By: Nahed Nasr

WoE – Al Ahram Weekly

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Abdel-Nasser and the children of Tuna Al-Gebel during Thoth’s Festival in New Hermopolis photo credit: Ramy Nouh

The fourth Thoth Festival opened on 26 October, 2019 at New Hermopolis, a non-profit development founded by Mervat Abdel-Nasser in the town of Tuna Al-Gebel, the site of the necropolis of Khmun (aka Hermopolis Magna). This was the western part of the ancient city named after Hermes, the Greek incarnation of the Egyptian god Thoth, whose eastern part is present-day Al-Ashmunein, not far from another important ancient site, Al-Amarna. New Hermopolis is 20km from the city of Mallawi and within the jurisdiction of the Mallawi municipality in the governorate of Minya, and its aim is to fuel cultural and economic activity in Middle Egypt.…continue reading…

Graphic Designer Ghada Wali Rebrands The National Library of Egypt

Thursday February 7, 2019

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The National Library of Egypt reopened on Sunday February 3rd, after restorations to the fire damaged building and some of its contents that were caused by the attack on the nearby Cairo Police Headquarters in 2014. Along the restoration of the building, Graphic Designer Ghada Wali and her partner Dalia Hassan Bahig have been working on...continue reading…

Egyptian Woman Launches Project to Help Arab-American Children Learn Arabic in America

Wednesday January 16, 2019                             By: Kismat Mokhtar

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While cultures and traditions of immigrants in the west are easier to preserve, their heritage languages become more challenging for the new generations to learn, even when spoken at home; Arab Americans are no exception. Despite their immersion in the culture, the efforts by Arab American parents to teach Arabic to their children are often wasted. The influence of school, friends and life outside the house is stronger. As children grow older, they become...continue reading…

‘Mona Dreams of Being a Doctor’: Helping Sinai Bedouin Girls Receive Education

Wednesday December 5, 2018                             By: Egyptian Streets 

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Source: Bedouin Girls Education Project’s Facebook page 

While there are countless projects being done in Cairo and other cities in Egypt to help young women receive an education and work, there is still limited attention given to the bedouin women in Sinai. Due to unfortunate events, the Sinai peninsula has in recent years become a haven for terrorism and transnational crime, posing great threats to Egypt’s national security. Though what is missing from the discourse is human security – that is … continue reading… 

Artist Esraa Zidan Paints Her Women Colorful, Playful and Overweight

Wednesday November 21, 2019                  By: Kismat Mokhtar

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The unrealistic “perfect” body images of models in advertisements and marketing campaigns are distorting the perception of beauty in the minds of women. This idealized image of skinny models on the runways and in ad campaigns send messages to women that a thin body size reflects beauty and attractiveness.  Moreover, girls growing up surrounded by such advertisements are negatively influenced by them.Instead of embracing their bodies, they rebel against theirbody image. When they compare their bodies to…continue reading…

Tapping Into Spirits and Celebrating Women: Egyptian Zar

Thursday October 25, 2018            By: Egyptian Streets

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Photo courtesy of GETTY Images

Throughout Egyptian musical history, Egyptian Zar music has historically been the only musical tradition in Egypt in which women hold the most important roles in the ensemble’s performance.

Hajer El Hadidi, author of the book “Zar” (2016), defined the genre as a complex healing ritual that is practiced in areas around the Gulf and the Red Sea. At its core, the word ‘Zar’ can also be interpreted as any form of evil spirit or jinn that possesses …continue reading…

Magda Saleh: The Story of Egypt’s First Prima Ballerina

Friday October 5, 2016                       By: Egyptian Streets

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Magda Saleh – Studio Portrait: “Giselle” (Act II) Studo Alban, Kasr El Nil Street, Cairo, 1968

The Egyptian identity has gone through many phases. From the times of Ancient Egypt to the influence of the Christian Coptic and Islamic civilisations, the question of what constitutes as ‘Egyptian’ is still very confusing. Egyptian dance, for instance, is often attributed to whirling dervishes, stick-fighting, and belly dance. It is not so common that one hears of famous ballet dancers as they do in Moscow or Paris. Yet in the 1950s and 60s, the ballet industry faced its first boom with the rise of Soviet influence and the vast cultural revolution that was taking place at the time…continue reading…

10 Books By Egyptian Female Authors You Should Read

Thursday October 4, 2018

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In Egypt, like everywhere else, the literarily arena is dominated by male authors. But nonetheless, female writers have been contributing to the literary world since the turn of the twentieth century. And with the new millennia, the number of female writers in Egypt is growing fast. Their books are not merely a source of literary entertainment. They also play a pivotal role in women empowerment. The gender experiences and struggles female authors face in the Egyptian patriarchal society …continue reading…

A Kid’s Photo Session in Nubia Becomes a Viral Sensation

Monday September 3, 2018                          By: Kismat Mokhtar

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It takes talent, creativity, a lot of energy and patience to become a successful kids’ photographer. In spite of the challenges kids’ photographers encounter, Rowan Khaled and her fiancé Abdel Rahman Sherif started their business Kids Marshmallow Station to capture those magical playful moments mothers treasure forever. Together, the young photographers created colorful fairytales and precious memories. Their business has been growing steadily, gaining more publicity…continue reading….

Umm Kulthum, the Strong Independent Star of the Orient

Sunday August 26, 2018                    By – Alexandra Kinias

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Dubbed as Star of the Orient by her fans, Umm Kulthum (1889 or 1904 – 1973) is recognized as the most renowned and influential Egyptian and Arab musician in the twentieth century. Forty-five years after her death, she had secured her position as an eternal legend.…continue reading…

Art with a Mediterranean Flavor

Tuesday August 21, 2018                By: Alexandra Kinias

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There is a special bond between coastal cities and their residents. A connection familiar to those who grew up in one, especially on the Mediterranean coast, where along its shores lies the city of Alexandria, as unique as its founder.… continue reading …

 

Meet Israa El-Naggar, the Visual Artist Behind Cairo Mockingbird

Thursday July 2, 2018                             By: Dina Al Mahdy

38254856_10160521222820237_977933713650221056_nInspired by Berlin ArtParasites—a German social media art platform dedicated to publishing English quotes and excerpts from great literary chef d’oeuvres— visual artist Israa El-Naggar and her colleague Mohamed Gamal, author, and founder of Kotobna, a self-publishing platform, launched Cairo Mockingbird, in November 2015, to promote art, reading, and writing. The only difference between the two is that most of the works shared on Cairo Mockingbirdare by Arab writers and artists….. continue reading ….

Egyptian Film “The Campaign” Screens at the Arab Film Festival in Michigan

Friday June 1, 2018

“Can an ad campaign change attitudes towards Sexual Harassment in Egypt?” 

33992935_1820499261322093_3801690495327928320_nThe short Egyptian film, The Campaign, by Egyptian-American director Jenny Montasir will be screened on Wednesday, June 6th at the Arab Film Festival organized by the Arab American National Museum in Dearborn, MI. The Campaign will be paired with Tunisian feature film Beauty and the Dogs (Aala Kaf Ifrit). Montasir will also participate in a panel following the screenings to discuss sexual harassment and how to support transnational solidarity with movements like Me Too.… continue reading ..

 

Meet Wissam Fahmy, One of Egypt’s Prominent Contemporary Artists

Saturday May 12, 2018                    By: Alexandra Kinias

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Wissam Fahmy’s presence filled Al Hanager Art Center with positive energy. At 79, the prominent Egyptian artist is still active, maybe not as much in producing new art work, but she still organizes her own shows and attend exhibitions by various artists; continuing the journey she started more than 5 decades ago…. continue reading …

 

Egyptian Photographer Heba Khamis Wins 2018 World Press Photo Award

Saturday April 14, 2018                              By: WOE Team

1518950991-Khamis_mainnnnEgyptian visual researcher and photographer Heba Khamis, 29, won first prize in the Contemporary Issues Stories, in the 2018 World Press Photo contest. Khamis’s photo was selected from entries by 4,548 photographers, from around the world. She’s the first Egyptian female photographer to win this award…. continue reading …

 

The 100th Birthday of Egyptian Icon Laila Mourad (1918-2018)

Saturday February 17, 2018          By – Radwa Hosny

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Today, February 17th, marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of legendary Egyptian singer and actress Laila Mourad. Although Mourad’s career was cut short by her early retirement, at the age of 37, her songs and movies still captivate millions of her lovers in Egypt and around the Arab world. The daughter of a cantor and a Jewish convert to Islam, Lilian Ibrahim Zaki Mordecai, who later took the stage name Laila Murad, was born on February 17, 1918….. continue reading ….

Faten Hamama (1931- 2015) – Egypt’s Ambassador of La Belle Époque

Saturday January 20, 2017           By: Alexandra Kinias

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Faten Hamama’s movies shaped the lives of women in Egypt and the Arab world for decades. Her death in 2015 marked the end of an era that many romanticized with. Her movies evoke nostalgia to another life long gone. A life that many had witnessed first-hand while others lived it through her black and white movies. She was Egypt’s ambassador of la belle époque…. continue reading 

“Tales of Al Ghandoura” Exhibition by Artist Omaima Alseesi

Thursday – January 18, 2018           By: WOE Team

26942397_10155842111392367_1709801619_oArtist Omaima Alseesi is hosting an exhibition at Nahdet Misr Gallery – Mahmoud Mukhtar Museum from January 11th – 21st, 2018, named “Hekayat Al-Ghandoura,” (Tales of A Pretty Woman). “Tales of Al-Ghandoura” is a women-themed exhibition. Through more than 45 oil paintings on canvas, Omaima tells various stories about women. She also reflects through her brush and warm and vibrant colors women internal beauty and how they adapt to their hard surroundings through their optimistic perception of life…. continue reading ….

6 Amazing Egyptian Opera Singers You Should Meet

Monday October 23, 2017

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Opera singing was first introduced to Egypt in 1869. Khedive Ismail instructed the building of an opera house to celebrate the opening of the Suez Canal. He commissioned the famous Italian composer, Guizzepi Verdi, to write his famous opera Aida for the inaugural ceremonies. … continue … 

Mahmoud Said’s Women

Tuesday August 29, 2017

Mahmoud Saïd was born in Alexandria on 8 April 1897, to an affluent aristocratic family. He was the son of Egyptian Prime Minister Mohamed Pacha Said. He was also the uncle of King Farouk’s first wife, Safinza Zulficar, who became known as Queen Farida of Egypt, reigning between 1938 … cont ……..

Art Without Borders: Meet 13 Artists Exhibiting Their Work in Rome

Thursday August 10, 2017

In Rome, the heart of arts and culture of the Renaissance, thirteen Egyptian women from “Art Without Borders” will be featuring their work in their debut international exhibition.

Organized by Shereen Badr, “Art Without Borders – Italy” will take place in …….. continue …..

 

 

Singer Hana Ghoneim And The Colored Dress

Tuesday August 1, 2017

Multitalented Artist, Hana Ghoneim, just released her latest song Colored Dress, the soundtrack of the first Egyptian docudrama film, with the same title, directed by Ehab Moustafa. The song was written by poet Radwa Alawady and composed by the renowned Italian musician Antongiulio Frulio, who also wrote the music theme for several international movies like Anna Karenina and The Pursuit of Happiness with Will Smith. ….continue ….

Hala El Sharouny’s Women

Tuesday April 11, 2017

Expressionist Egyptian artist Hala Sharouny graduated from Helwan University in 2004 and holds a Masters degree in painting. Hala’s work is characterized by its dynamic, playful techniques. Her palette is diverse, colorful and vibrant. Her artwork addresses contemporary social issues like women and society with a twist of humor…. continue …..

An Egyptian Star is Born in Canada

Saturday April 8, 2017
By: Habiba Elhady

Singer and songwriter Malak Ghanem released her debut album, Circus, in the winter of 2016. She has also released, since then, six live video performances. Her latest video of her original Rule the World, recorded with Ottawa initiative Shot in the Dark, has received over 90,000 views in Canada, the U.S., Egypt and the Emirates, from current and …continue ….

 

The Fight for Women Rights – Book Review

Saturday February 25, 2017
By Alexandra Kinias

419gsb65xrl-_sx311_bo1204203200_All the women Gameela consulted, in Iman Refaat’s intriguing first novel, advised her not to destroy her marriage. “The shadow of a man is better than a shadow of a wall,” they told her. “For the sake of your children [don’t ask for a divorce]. You will be rejected. Women will avoid you in fear of stealing their husbands. You will disgrace your family, ruin your reputation. Men make mistakes,” they asserted her, “but a good woman is the one who protects her home and her family.” …. continue reading ….

 

Egyptian Designer Makes it on “Forbes 30 Under 30” List

February 1, 2017
By: Alexandra Kinias

Egyptian graphic designer Ghada Wali was selected on the Forbes’ List 30 under 30 Europe – Arts 2017, making her the first Egyptian to ever be included on the European list. With her cutting edge projects, controversial artwork and short, yet rich professional career, Wali already inscribed her  ….continue …. 

From Cairo to the World’s Greatest Opera Houses

Thursday December 22, 2016
Written by: Habiba Elhady

The musical journey of prominent Egyptian opera singer Amira Selim started at the age of six. She grew up in a house where music and art were not only cherished, but also a profession. Amira was born to pioneering pianist and classical musician Marcelle Matta and Egypt’s renowned artist and art critic Ahmed Fouad Selim. Her parents’ artistic background played an instrumental role in shaping her upbringing and influencing her career. “I was always attracted to theaters, stages, acting, dancing,” says Amira during an interview in Paris, where she ….. continue ….

Carelle Homsy: Egyptian Expressionism Artist

Carelle Homsy  was born in Cairo in 1968.  She graduated from the Faculty of Arts Education, Helwan University in 1991, and a year later  she had her first solo exhibition at the Cairo Atelier. Since then, she had many solo and collective exhibitions in Egypt and abroad.  Her last solo exhibition was in London in February 2016….. continue ….

Every Picture Tells A Story: Book Review

Saturday December 3, 2016
By: Ibrahim Khalaff

Noran Omar Shafey’s debut novel, “Baraweez,” takes the reader on an intense emotional journey of three Egyptian women and how they are shaped by their life experiences. Baraweez is the Egyptian colloquial word for picture frames and the book consists of three stories (novellas), narrated by a grandmother to her loving granddaughter. On the grandmother’s coffee table are picture frames of the three Egyptian women, whose stories reflect the phases of the January 25th revolution. Each story takes you into ….continue ….

Opera in Egypt and the Mezzosoprano Prodigy: Farrah ElDibany

Written by Nadeen ElFekky and Maryam Meshal –
Sunday October 2, 2016

Music has always played a crucial role in the Egyptian culture. Dating back to the Ancient Egyptian civilization, music was believed to be a method of enlightening by Osiris, the god of the afterlife. Musicians were painted on the walls of ancient temples and tombs playing many instruments including the harp, flute and clarinet. This was the beginning of Egypt’s dynamic musical diversity.

Of the many music genres that emerged over the centuries, opera, which combines the art of singing, acting and dancing at once, is one of the most remarkable. Farrah ElDibany is among many Egyptian opera singers who have gained international acclaim, where their voices resonate on the stages …. continue ….