THE SUPREME Council for Culture held a seminar on Tuesday on actress Sanaa Gamil, who died last year. Presided over by Council Secretary Gaber Asfour, the seminar, "The Art of Sanaa Gamil", featured contributions from Alfred Farag, Saad Ardash, Rafiq El-Sabban, Samiha Ayoub, Osama Abu-Taleb, Mahfouz Abdel-Rahman and others.
The seminar was followed by the screening of a short documentary on the actress and a performance of Zahrat Al-Sabbar (Cactus Flower), the play with which she made her name.
NOVELIST and women's rights activist Nawal El-Saadawi won the annual Premi International Catalunya Literary Award for her lifetime's contribution to human and cultural development, reports Reham El-Adawi . The novelist will spend five days in Barcelona at the beginning of May to receive the award and attend several receptions held in her honour, one of which will be in the company of President Pujol. As part of the process, some of Saadawi's novels will be translated into the Catalan.
Egyptians in Milan...
THE MILAN Festival for African Film, to open in March, features three Egyptian official- competition entries, Ali Abu-Shadi, head of the National Centre of Cinema, announced: Radwan El-Kashef's Al-Sahir (The Magician), Mohamed El-Qalyoubi's Kharif Adam (Adam's Autumn) and Samir Seif's Maali Al-Wazir (His Excellency the Minister), starring Mahmoud Abdel-Aziz, Hisham Abdel-Hamid and Ahmed Zaki, respectively.
Abu-Shadi added that Egypt will, in addition, contribute two short films and 14 animated features, produced by the Centre and the Higher Cinema Institute.
HUNGARY'S Peoples Festival opens this Sunday and features 45 contributions from seven Arab countries. Represented by the Administration for Artistic Production Centres, a division of the Plastic Arts Department, Egypt exhibits costumes, copper objects and mother-of-pearl inlay work, khayahmiya fabric and painted glass at this celebration of craftwork.
THE EGYPTIAN Museum summer school, a project offering courses in history and Egyptology for a minimal fee, found support this week in Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni's decision to introduce several new initiatives.
Starting this summer -- Zahi Hawass, secretary-general of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, announced -- two new six-week terms will commence. Added benefits include a smaller number of students and field trips to both museums and archeological sites.
He added that the minister also approved expanding the parameters of the project to the Islamic Museum, the Coptic Museum and the Greek Museum, following the completion of ongoing renovations at these venues.
Museums serving as cultural centres are to be established, over the next year and a half, in Sharm El-Sheikh, Arish, Rashid, Alexandria and Sohag.
THE SHARM El-Sheikh Amphitheatre opened this week in the presence of Mustafa Afifi, governor of south Sinai, and the Bahraini King Hamad Bin Eissa Al Khalifa, under the auspices of Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni. Singer Mohamed Mounir performed to more than 2,000 Arab and foreign tourists to mark the event.
The theatre utilises the latest sound and light equipment, director Shaker Abdel-Latif announced, making it possible to accommodate opera, classical music and dance as well as contemporary performances.
El-Sebaie at home
FARES AL-Romanseya (The Knight of Romance), a new televised drama focussing on the late novelist Youssef El-Sebaie, is currently being filmed at the Sawt Al-Qahira Studios, where El-Sebaie's house was painstakingly recreated.
Starring Mohamed Riyad, Mahmoud El- Guindi, Rania Farid Shawqi, Amina Rizq, Nehal Anbar, among others, the drama opens with El- Sebaie's childhood in the 1930s, progressing through the various stages of his life.
MUSCIAN Abdel-Wahab Abdel-Fattah, who works primarily in electronic media, presented a three-dimensional rendition of the late icon Abdel-Halim Hafez singing Risala min taht Al-Maa (A Message from Under Water), Nizar Qabbani's poem, at the Opera House on Saturday. The multimedia show featured a new arrangement of the music as well as impressions of the images the poem evokes.
The concert also featured Chernobyl and Variations on Doaa Al-Karawan (The Nightingale's Call), two of Abdel-Fattah's works.
THE 24TH Oscar Festival for Egyptian Cinema, organised by The Art of Cinema Association, this year announced nominations in all of its sections, a newly instigated tradition following in the footsteps of Hollywood.
Nominated for the Best Actress, the festival director, Abdel-Moneim Saad announced, are Nadia El-Guindi, Yusra, Lebleba, Ilham Shahine and Abla Kamel; Ahmed Zaki, Mahmoud Abdel- Aziz, Hisham Abdel-Hamid, Mohamed Saad, Hani Ramzi and Mustafa Shaaban compete for the Best Actor Award. The Best Director Award will go to Samir Sief, Ali Badrakhan, Sherif Arafa, Radwan El-Kashef or Mohamed Abu-Sief; while the nominees for the Best Screenplay are Wahid Hamed, Sami El-Siwi, Medhat El-Adl and Lenin El-Ramli. Nominees for Best Music are Omar Khairat and Hisham Nazih; for the Best Set Salah Marie and Mahmoud Baraka. A Directorial Debut Award, in addition, will go to either Rami Imam or Wael Ehsan.
The festival will also honour Zizi El-Badrawi and Laila Taher as well as the Ahmed Galal and Doria Ahmed.