El Tanboura – Photo courtesy of Cairo Opera House’s official Facebook page
CAIRO – 4 July 2018: El-Tanbura, an Egyptian traditional folk band, will perform a concert on July 5 at El-Dammah Theater, Downtown.
Based in Port Said, El-Tanbura is an Egyptian traditional folk band formed by Zakaria Ibrahim. Made up of traditional musicians, singers, fishermen, and Sufi philosophers, the group will perform some of Egypt’s oldest folk songs.
According to El-Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music, a specific traditional musical instrument, the simsimeyya, played a part in the resistance movement in the years after the Suez Crisis. In the aftermath of the 1967 war, exiles of Port Said would sing nostalgic folk songs using simsimeyya.
When Zakaria Ibrahim returned to Port Said in 1980 after exile, he found the old methods and the simsimeyya abandoned. Ibrahim spent years searching for the old masters of traditional folk music, trying to reconnect with them and encourage the revival of that traditional genre of music; their nostalgic folk songs revive the history of resistance of Port Said's people.
El-Mastaba Center for Egyptian Folk Music is a cultural institution that helps promote traditional Egyptian arts; from space renting to educational workshops, its mission is to “pioneer social change through arts.”