Al-Karama Party Salon: Where poetry, politics, and performing artists collide
Ali Ismail is one of the Egyptian musicians performing at the new salon. (Image: Facebook)
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Each Thursday during Ramadan, Al-Karama Party will welcome guests to its Dokki headquarters for a cultural salon featuring Egyptian artists.
“Our party is not all about politics,” said Tarek Said, head of Al Karama’s press office. “Any party should be involved in cultural and social issue due to the diversity of the Egyptian streets. Culture is a complementary element to politics. It was the spark that started the revolution.”
The party supports young, “respectful” talents by giving space to young poets and singers to perform at the salon, Said said. Al-Karam hopes to keep the salons going after Ramadan and get more people to join.
About 100 people attended the first event Thursday, including Al-Karam leader Mohamed Samy and former presidential candidate Hamdeen Sabahy. After giving a short speech, Sabahy mixed with guests, taking selfies. Sabahy founded the party in 1996, but did not obtain a formal licence until 2011 following the 25 January Revolution.
People gathered in the main room to listen to Egyptian musician Ali Ismail play the lute and sing folkloric Egyptian songs, including El-Sheikh Imam’s ”Masr Yamma Ya Baheya” and Gamal Bekhit’s “Shobak El Nabi” (The Prophet’s window). People shouted “Allah” every now and then, expressing their appreciation. Mohamed El Bora’ei took the stage next, reciting his poems about the revolution. “Your eyes are full of Molotov” was one of his lines.
“The revolution influenced everything in our lives,” El-Bora’ei said “Even romantic poetry.”
This Thursday’s programme will include the Egyptian musician Haytham Mahfouz and poet Ali Abdel-Al. The party’s headquarters are located on the fourth floor at 7 Ali Ismail Street in Dokki.