When I’m quoted

6 July 2013

BBC Radio 3: programme Music Matters / Egypt

Suzy Klein travelled to Cairo to meet musicians and cultural activists, and find out how Egypt is forging a new cultural identity in 2013.

In 1871 Giuseppe Verdi’s grand opera Aida was given its world premiere at the newly built Cairo Opera House. In June 2013, on the stage of the new opera house, singers and musicians appeared in full dress once more for a performance of Aida, but this time holding protest placards against interference from the sixth culture minister to be appointed in two years. Suzy speaks to Nayer Nagui, conductor of the Cairo Opera Orchestra, and journalist Ati Metwaly and asks whether the protests within the arts mirror wider unrest across the country, and what role the arts have in protecting cultural diversity in a country of 80 million people. …

listen to the complete programme here


01 July 2013


Photo used. Check the complete story here


2 May 2013

Mideast Posts: Salafist War on Egyptian Culture ‘in Full Flow’

Saudi weekly magazine Majalla runs a story on the Salafist war against arts and culture in Egypt. Not only are actors and directors being arrested for supposed ‘crimes against Islam’, but the hard-line conservatives are also calling for bans on the books of Nobel Laureate Naguib Mahfouz and the covering of statues of the pharaohs in wax. At least they’re not calling for them to be destroyed or the Pyramids torn down.

read the complete article here


15 August 2012

Bahaa Taher on Translating Books to Radio

… “The book is told in successive first-person chapters, which Taher said he “finds difficult” but also “prefers.” He told Ati Metwaly, in an interview for Majalla published last month, of Sunset Oasis, that “I started writing this novel in a third-person. I had three chapters ready when I felt there was something wrong… I didn’t feel it… I decided to rewrite all with a first-person narrator, giving each protagonist its individual voice.” …

read the complete article here


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