Egypt has a long and storied history with the arts, none more so than when it comes to music – after all, the likes of Om Kolthoum, Abdel Halim Hafez and Sayed Darwish were born and raised on these shores and went on to conquer the Middle East – and the world in the case of Om Kolthoum.
The last few years has seen the music scene experience a renaissance of sorts, with more and more talents emerging from a wide scope of backgrounds and musical philosophies with Oriental or Arabic fusion being one of the most fruitful genres.
But there still exists one big challenge; breaking into the industry and reaching wider audiences. There are plenty of initiatives, venues and projects that aim to do exactly that, with one of the latest, backed by the Cultural Development Fund (CDF), Al Sawt Al-Dahaby.
The House of Arabic Music (Bayt El Ghenaa El Araby) and Om Kolthoum Museum, has launched Al Sawt Al-Dahaby (the Golden Voice); a singing competition for aspiring local talents across Egypt.
Under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture, the CDF is calling on singers between the ages of 18 and 38 to apply for Al Sawt Al-Dahaby by submitting an application to the CDF premises at Cairo Opera House.
Participants who will be shortlisted by the CDF will be contacted to audition for the competition, in which they are encouraged to draw inspiration from traditional Arabic repertoire.
The winner of Al Sawt Al-Dahaby will be awarded a 10,000LE prize, a scholarship opportunity to study at the House of Arabic Music, in addition to receiving mentorship from some of the biggest names in Egyptian music.
Second and third runners-up, will also receive scholarships alongside 7,000LE for 5,000LE respectively.
Al-Sawt Al-Dahaby's jury will be comprised of veteran Egyptian musicians and singers including Director of House of Arabic Music and singer, Mohsen Farouk, Nadia Mostafa, Hany Shenouda, Egyptian soprano Taheya Shams El-Din, as well as several others.
Mohamed Abou Se'da, head of the CDF recently extended the competition's deadline to August 31st allowing more to join and participate in Al-Sawt Al-Dahaby's talent hunt.
For more information, call 02-2735-7001 or 02-2735-4234.