We all need a little cultural relief in our lives – because let’s be honest, talking about nightlife and parties isn’t exactly conducive to any kind of intellectual growth – and that’s why the three-week D-CAF Festival can’t come soon enough.
Promising live music, dance, film and much more, D-CAF came under quite a bit of flack last year, but taking place at select Downtown Cairo venues between March 31 and April 22, the fifth edition of the festival has thrown up some pretty unique – even if simple – shows, acts and activities that have us vigorously stroking our chins, in a ‘hmmm, that actually sounds pretty interesting’ kind of way. Behold, these five things that you must do:
When: 2 April @5PM, 9 April @6PM, 22 April @6PM. Free.
Where: Horreya Café, TBC
We’re not sure about you, but its been years since we were read to. At Literature @ Downtown three actors will read excerpts chosen by Egyptian novelist, Ahmed Al Aidi, from books by author, Ahmed Naji (pictured above), poet Mostafa Ibrahim and Chuck Palahniuk. The excerpts have been chosen for their performative qualities; and we like the idea of being immersed into a literal performance while sipping on our teas and shishas. Put your phone on silent.
When: April 15 @2PM-5PM, 16 April @2PM-5PM
Where: Public space TBC
Return to your childhood – or some kind of trippy version of it – with two street puppet shows performed by the Kousha Puppets troupe from Fayoum. The shows are suitable for adult and young audiences alike in its exploration of Egyptian folklore monsters, the stuff of nightmares and adventure, all against a backdrop of a Downtown Cairo public space.
When: 5 – 8 April @ 2:30PM, 4PM, 5.30PM. 20LE.
Where: 22 Abdel Khaleq Tharwat Street, Old French Consulate Rooftop, Radio Cinema Courtyard or Greek Campus rooftop
Why not recline on a deckchair on a quiet Downtown side street, courtyard or a rooftop while listening to a series of real dream stories to the backdrop of music that may pull you into your own lucid dream? In the Shadows of the Waves is the perfect experience for the more laidback and experimental culture consumer, as well as those who have succumbed to the eventuality of modern life loosening their grip on reality.
When: April 14 @8PM-10PM
Where: AUC Falaki Theatre
DCAF’s dance night will bring together three contemporary dancers from Syria, Lebanon and Egypt: Mithkal Alzghair, Danya Hammoud and Ezzat Ismail will debut their latest work in video form and through live performances, where they’ll explore the concept of home, life in a city, territory and harmony, all through interpretative contemporary dance. Sounds complex, but, hey, that’s why we’re here.
When: April 15 @9PM – 1AM
Where: AUC Greek Campus. 50LE
Before you roll your eyes at the thought of another mahraganat/shaabi night, this one sounds genuinely interesting: Abdelbaset Hammouda, one of the legends of Shaabi music, will be performing alongside relative newcomer, Ahmed El Sweasy, and the group Studio Stella, who won the Stella ‘Nogoum al Mahragan’ competition in 2015. This concert promises the coming together of old and new, mixing of subgenres and sampling of classics, all to the infectious, flail-inducing shaabi beat.
By Kalam El Qahaira