Friday,19 October, 2018
Current issue | Issue 1404, (2 - 8 August 2018)
Friday,19 October, 2018
Issue 1404, (2 - 8 August 2018)

Ahram Weekly

Moveable feasts

A music festival, new cultural palaces, handicrafts workshops and book awards: Nevine El-Aref highlights the Ministry of Culture’s activities this week

 

Ines Abdel-Dayem
Ines Abdel-Dayem

Last week the National Centre for Translation announced the short lists for the ninth Refaa Al-Tahtawi Translation Awards. According to the centre director Anwar Mughith, the award — worth LE100,000 — is a way to pay tribute to the “unknown knights” of cultural exchange, who build “permanent bridges connecting civilisations”. Five books have been shortlisted: a new, contemporary translation of Giovanni Boccaccio’s Decameron by Abdallah Al-Ati and Essam Al-Sayed, Anwar Mohamed’s first translation from the Russian of the 1923 classic The Diary and Reminiscences of Mme Dostoevsky and three scholarly works: Jean Aitchison’s A Practical Introduction to Contemporary Linguistics translated by Abdel-Kerim Gabal; Hank Johnston’s States and Social Movements translated by Ahmed Zayed; and Jan Kyrre Berg Olsen’s New Waves in Philosophy of Technology translated by Shawki Galal. The award’s Youth and Scientific Culture subcategories, worth LE25,000 each, include Simon Critchely’s introduction to continental philosophy in the “Very Short Introduction” series, the Malaysian educator Syed Farid Al-Attas’ Ibn Khaldun and Unbounding the Future: The Nanotechnology Revolution by Chris Peterson, Gayle Pergamit and Eric Drexler.

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According to Ahmed Awwad, the head of the Cultural Palaces Authority, nine newly inaugurated palaces are to bring culture to remote and deprived parts of Egypt, “endorsing positive traditions and precepts and preserving cultural heritage and the Egyptian identity”. They include the Gamal Abdel-Nasser Cultural Palace in Assiut, which provides for a 145-seat theatre as well as numerous spaces, a library and a small Nasser museum. In the Red Sea governorate, a palace was established in Abraq, with special provisions for Sinai handicrafts; another, larger one is under construction in Ras Hadraba. Similar facilities are being established in Al-Adessat and Hod Al-Remal in Luxor, while development work is underway at existing palaces in Al-Bahr Al-Azam, Giza governorate in Cairo, Belbais in Sharqiya governorate, Kafr Al-Sheikh in the Delta and Sharm El-Sheikh in Sinai.

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Minister of Culture Ines Abdel-Dayem today inaugurates the 27th Saladin Citadel Music Festival (2-17 August), which includes 37 concerts by musicians from Palestine, Syria, Tunisia, China, Mexico and Panama as well as Egyptian stars such as Hani Shaker and Medhat Saleh. According to Cairo Opera House Chairman Magdi Saber, this year the official title includes the word “international” for the first time, reflecting the global variety of Sufi, classical, jazz as well as Oriental music.

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The Cairo Opera House is participating in the 12th round of Morocco’s International Festival of Children’s Folklore, held under the theme “Children of Peace” and featuring 850 children from 30 countries, including 15 from Egypt.

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The National Centre for Theatre, Music and Folk Art annual playwriting competition is on the theme of “national belonging”. According to the centre head Mohamed Al-Kholi, authors can only submit only one work each, the deadline is 30 August and three winners will be awarded LE15,000, LE12,000 and LE10,000.

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