Media coverage on the Arab world often bombards us with endless speculation and depressing news from the region. However, the Barbican’s new cultural offering – ‘A night in Tahrir Square’ – aims to provide us with a positive alternative insight, marking the infamous night when Egyptians protesters revolted and partied against their tyrannical regime.
As part of ‘Shubbak: A Window on Contemporary Arab Culture’ and Blaze seasons, the evening sets out to uncover the way music played a major role in the revolution. The lineup features a diversity of artists with admirable back-stories, such as Ramy Essam, whose rough and ready approach to performing during the uprising (on various makeshift stages!) resulted in the viral success of his song ‘Irhal’ (‘leave’). Also, Poet Ahmed Fouad Negm plans to reveal his evocative works that eventually led to his incarceration. Certainly, this night will encourage an appreciation of the artistic side to protests while hopefully dispelling negative stereotypes of the Middle East. (Words: Monique Todd)
Barbican presents “A Night in Tahrir Square” on 22 July and Shubbak runs from July 4–24 2011. For more details, visit www.london.gov.uk/shubbak