Sunday,24 February, 2019
Current issue | Issue 1384, (8 - 14 March 2018)
Sunday,24 February, 2019
Issue 1384, (8 - 14 March 2018)

Ahram Weekly

India cruise

In its sixth round, India’s cultural extravaganza is making more of an impact than ever, Reham El-Adawi reports

Mourad, Bhattacharyya and K Roy at the press conference
Mourad, Bhattacharyya and K Roy at the press conference

On Sunday 4 March, the Indian Embassy with Teamwork Arts (the company that organises the India by the Nile Festival) gave a press conference at the Semiramis InterContinental Hotel to announce the programme for the sixth round (6-17 March in Cairo, Alexandria and Port Said). Present were Indian Ambassador Sanjay Bhattacharyya, Teamwork Managing Director Sanjoy K. Roy and Head of the Ministry of Culture’s Centre for International Cultural Cooperation Hisham Mourad. Supported by TCI Sanmar, the huge event features food, yoga and (this year) a fashion show featuring India’s celebrated designer Tarun Tahiliani and a Brand India programme as well as art shows; it encourages knowledge of and collaboration with India.

According to Bhattacharyya, “India by the Nile represents the dramatic changes taking place in India. It reaches out to audiences in Cairo and other cities...  to build new bridges, especially with the youth... The biggest foreign festival in Egypt seeks to grow even bigger!” Roy, for his part, stressed the 70th anniversary of India’s independence, which coincides with 70 years of diplomatic relations with Egypt, an occasion to showcase India’s cultural diversity and create opportunities for exchange and understanding between the world’s oldest cultures and civilisations”. And indeed there are numerous highlights to look forward to.

Award-winning sarod virtuoso Amjad Ali Khan will perform Indian classical music (8 March in Cairo and 10 March in Alexandria), doctor-photographer Khaled Gawdat will exhibit photos of India, “People and Places”, at El-Sawy Culturewheel (14 March), the Indian Food Fiesta featuring celebrity chef Vikram Udaygiri will be held at the Semiramis (10-16 March) and the Cairo and Alexandria operas will host a rich programme of music and dance. There will also be Bharatanatyam performances by Malavika Sarukkai and Sufi and folk melodies by the Kabir Cafe. Bollywood dance show choreographer Gilles Chuyen will be giving workshops in all three cities, and the film screenings programme includes a morning show of the Hindi children’s film Hawaa Hawaai (15 March at  Al-Hanager Cinema), an evening show of the sequel to Bollywood’s biggest ever hit Baahubali (16 March at Karim Cinema, Downtown). On a drier if no less compelling note, an economic seminar entitled “India-Egypt Economic Engagement Poised for Transformation” will bring investors and stakeholders from the two countries together (11 March at the Semiramis). There are also seminars on Indian tea, yoga and well-being.

India by the Nile is organised by the Embassy of India in Cairo and the Maulana Azad Centre for Indian Culture (MACIC) in partnership with Indian Council for Cultural Relations and Egyptian partners – the Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Tourism, the Cairo Opera House and the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, among others - as well as pioneering entertainment company Teamwork Arts, India.

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