Coursey: Wikimedia Commons
CAIRO - 12 May 2017: A cultural festival to celebrate the 156th birth anniversary of the legendary Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore has been organized by the Indian embassy in Egypt..
On May 8, the 'Kabuliwala' movie was screened at the Hanager Cinema in the Opera House complex, which is based on a novel written by Tagore. The festival will conclude on May 12 with 'Rituranga – Play of Seasons' which will be performed by members of the Indian community.
The Embassy is also organizing a painting competition for the Indian community’s children on Friday, May 12.
There was also a celebration in Alexandria at the Sayed Darwish Theatre on May 9, where 'Chitrangada' was performed.
The Tagore festival was organized in collaboration with the Egyptian Ministry of Culture, Cairo Opera House, Cultural Production Sector, Dancers’ Guild, and the Indian Community Association in Egypt.
Tagore is the most famous figure in India's literary heritage, and an integral contributor to Bengali literature - so influential in fact that he was dubbed "the Bard of Bengal”.
He won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913, which made him the first non-European to win this prize. Tagore’s songs were set to music, his novels were made into movies, and his plays have been enacted as dance drama.
He wrote the national anthems of India and Bangladesh, and it was him who gave the title of ‘Mahatma’ to Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in 1915.
In 1878, Tagore visited Egypt for the first time as a youngster, and later in 1926 as a famous poet, when he met King Fouad I. He interacted with scholars in both Cairo and Alexandria and was impressed by the Egyptian literary trends and wrote about the relationship between the River Nile and Egyptian civilization.
Tagore was even friends with the prominent Egyptian poet Ahmed Shawki, and he wrote a poignant eulogy at Shawki’s death in 1932.