Min. of mourning on the soul of late Samir Khafagy during the start of the CIFCET 25th edition's closing ceremonyMUSTAFAMARIE.jpg
CAIRO – 22 September 2018: The closing ceremony for the Cairo International Festival for Contemporary and Experimental Theatre in its 25th edition kicked off Fridayat the Grand Hall in the Cairo Opera House at 8 p.m.
Minister of Culture Inas Abdel Dayem attended the closing ceremony for the festival along with Sameh Mahran, the festival’s manager. Several theatrical artists and enthusiasts attended as well.
The event started at 8 p.m. with the attendees standing up while the national anthem played. Following the anthem, a short play for director Khaled Galal was performed on stage in celebration of the silver jubilee.
Furthermore, a short documentary was displayed summarizing the events, shows, and plays performed in the festival’s 25th edition and the numerous discussion sessions and workshops that took place within the festival’s educational/cultural exchange program.
Syrian artist Assaad Feddah, Iraqi artist Jawad al-Assadi, Iraqi artist Sayed Abdel Hamid, Bahraini artist Abdallah al-Sadawy, Kuwaiti artist Abdel Aziz al-Saree, Tunisian researcher, writer and novelist Ezziden al-Madany, Moroccan writer Abdel Karim Burshaid, veteran director Fahmy al-Khouly, Algerian artist Mohamed Adar, Egyptian writer Mohamed Salmawy, and Huda Wasfy were all honored on stage by Abdel Dayem and Mahran.
A special thank-you was directed to the International Theater Institute “| T |”, in gratitude for the technical support it provided throughout the festival’s program this year. The award was received by the president of the International Theater Authority, Mohamed al-Afkham, and Jordanian playwright and novelist Hatem al-Sayed.
Cairo International Festival for Contemporary and Experimental Theatre resumed from the period of Sept. 10-21. A total of 27 theatrical plays were performed.
Egypt Today approached veteran artist and acting teacher in Heliopolis University for Sustainable Development, Hamada Shousha, who made sure to attend the festival in its 25th edition this year. Shousha created his own theatrical team to perform comedy shows on stage in 1991. He is a graduate of the comedy theatre himself and is now a tutor at the same institute from which he graduated decades ago. He is a pioneer and a specialist in theatrical plays focusing on comedy.
The man attended numerous festivals locally and internationally in which he was awarded several prizes. When asked about what he thinks about the CIFCET festival this year, he said; “The festival in its 25th edition presented shows that could be absorbed and understood by anyone.” He further stated that Kuwait and Bahrain presented unique shows.
The artist further expressed his happiness for the participation of countries such as Kuwait in the festival this year after a hiatus of almost a decade. Shousha stated that the shows presented by the team from Palestine were some of the best this year, despite the complex condition the country is in politically.
Moreover, Shousha praised the festival in its 25th edition, assuring that the shows presented by the many different participating Arab states all had an inner moto and aimed to educate/enlighten the attendees using artistic/creative means.
Moreover, Bahraini veteran artist Abdallah al-Sadawy stated to Egypt Today that the festival this year is very special as it enabled numerous theatrical enthusiasts from different Arab countries to re-unite and exchange cultural and general knowledge about the industry, discussing new ways to develop it.
According to his statements to Egypt Today, Al-Sadawy believes that artistic festivals whether they are focusing on cinema or theatre are currently the only way for people to enjoy themselves in the midst of the numerous negativities and political turmoil the region is currently facing.
The veteran Bahraini artist expressed his gratitude for being in Egypt and for being honored in such an important festival. He believes that Egypt is the lighthouse that gathers all the Arab countries, especially when it comes to cultural or artistic festivals and events.
Some light effects were played on stage while the show was performed and as the honorees received their awards by the minister and Mahran.
It is worth noting that the attendees were asked to stand up for a minute of silence at the beginning of the closing ceremony by host Jasmine Taha Zaki for the late producer and playwright Samir Khafagy, who passed away on Sept. 21, after a struggle with illness.