This week, the culture desk recommends three free activities for this week that are particularly suited to Ramadan.
For the Fête de la musique in France, which started 25 years ago, all the streets of the country are filled with musicians playing for free every June 21. The French Institute in Cairo has been organizing one here for 10 years now, usually at the Citadel. This year, they are getting closer to the French concept by taking over Al-Azhar Park for a night with various bands playing in different locations. All kinds of musical styles will be represented: jazz, drums, sufi singers (El Hadra), a choir, classical. The main stage will feature Dina El Wedidi and François and the Atlas Mountains, a French band with influences ranging from French variety to English pop and rock.
Fête de la musique in Al-Azhar Park starts at 8pm on June 25. Free, but entry into the park is LE10. For more information, see here.
There’s air-conditioning in the Modern Art Museum and only a small section of the large collection is on view so, fasting or not, you won’t get too fatigued. It’s an extremely unusual place in various ways and because it’s empty of visitors most of the time you can confront your strange emotions about the strange work in peace. No one ever goes there but they should, because it contains some very important paintings, drawings and sculptures, and overall it offers a unique perspective on Egyptian art, history and society.
The museum is in Cairo’s Opera House Complex, and is open from 10 am to 1 pm during Ramadan, but closed Mondays and Fridays. Mada Masr was told that it’s currently free entry for Egyptians and foreigners. See the website here.
These free guided walking tours, organized by Walk Like an Egyptian, offer the opportunity of walking Cairo streets when they’re the least busy in the whole year, in the hour and a half before iftar. They promise more walking and less explanation, and the focus is on hidden architectural gems in Cairo’s modern neighborhoods. Perhaps they won’t be the most interesting walking tours on a cultural level, but the timing is great – perhaps especially for those who don’t fast, although iftars have been planned for the end of a couple of the tours.
There are five tours planned, the first on June 20, and the meeting point is McDonalds on Shehab Street in Mohandessin. For more information see here