The Israeli orchestra Firqat Al Noor performed a concert at the Israeli Embassy in Cairo and the home of Ambassador Amira Oron on May 16 and 17. The show was held at the initiative of the ambassador with the assistance of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the orchestra itself to mark Israel’s 74th Independence Day.
It was the first time that an Israeli orchestra had performed in Egypt since 1981, when the IBA orchestra visited Egypt.
The May performances were the Ministry’s second collaboration with the orchestra. In 2021, at the initiative of the Ambassador to Cairo and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the orchestra performed a concert that was broadcast on social media and the websites of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The concert was viewed by 800,000 people around the world.
Firqat Al Noor, whose members represent the mosaic of Israeli culture, was established in 2013 to preserve and revive the Arabic classical musical tradition, and is one of the few orchestras in the world that plays Arabic music from all around the Arab world. The orchestra is under the musical direction and direction of Ariel Cohen and the general director and artistic director Hannah Ftaya.
The orchestra’s moving and historic concert was received with great enthusiasm and admiration by the Egyptian audience and the foreign diplomats in attendance. The performance showed friends and neighbors in Cairo another glimpse of Israeli culture – the music of the great Egyptian singers that many in Israel, Jews and Arabs alike, enjoy.
We witnessed how the classic music produced in Cairo between the 1930s and 1950s can create a basis for friendship and connection with our neighbors and engender a spirit of cooperation.