Thursday September 28th, 2023
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D-CAF Returns Bigger and Better Than Ever

That time of year is upon us. Here's what to expect when D-CAF transforms downtown Cairo this March 19th - April 9th.

Staff Writer

March is just around the corner which means things in Cairo are about to get more contemporary and creative. Spanning the 19th of March to the 9th April, the multidisciplinary Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival will be taking over venues all across the capital, in what has become one of Cairo largest and most anticipatedannual festivals.

Returning for its fourth edition, the Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival also known as D-CAF, has established its self as the most diverse and multidisciplinary festival around, showcasing both local and international artists. Produced by the Orient Productions, D-CAF will be once again be covering a wide spectrum ranging from dance, visual and performance art, theatre, music, and film, scattered across various iconic venues in Downtown Cairo.

Originally the brain child of the festival’s artistic director Ahmed El Attar, D-CAF has continued to grow into a massive collaborative effort which explores six artistic disciplines: Performing Arts and Urban visions, which presents performance pieces in public space reminiscent to guerilla theatre, will be curated by El Attar, and will be joined with Mahmoud Refaat curating music, Mai Abu El Dahab curating visual arts, and Rasha Salti curating films.

As always the festival programming has been crafted to encourage as much audience participation as possible and will include a special segment in the programme outside curated events that will include talks, workshops, a film master-class, film screenings and dance performance. Other highlights this year will a programmer from the Toronto International Film Festival who will be curating a diverse selection of films spanning the globe from Senegal, China, Denmark, Brazil, USA to name a few. As for what one can expect in terms of music Mahmoud Refaat describes the sounds scheduled as an expose into the ‘urban youth culture’, matching popular German DJs with the finest local Shaabi acts emerging.

Not only giving new life to the arts scene, D-CAF continues its tradition returning historically relevant downtown locations often unnoticed and left to rot into new artistic spaces, returning some of the former prestige to Cairo’s iconic downtown district. Some of the key venues that will be transformed this year include; Urban Visions’ location in El Borsa, the Kodak passageway used last year for Hassan Khan’s exhibition, Sherazade Nightclub, The French Consulate on Shawarbi street, Viennoise Hotel, GrEEK Campus, Qasr el Nil Theatre, and Radio Cinema.

From its humble beginnings in 2012, D-CAF has continued to get bigger and better with every passing year, becoming known as a major platform of diverse art which is rarely accessible to average city-dweller. No matter what style or discipline of art you are passionate about, D-CAF will be catering to all tastes while providing a unique experience that won’t truly be understood without your participation. As always, we'll be on the ground covering everything live on our social media accounts, and bringing you interviews, reviews and more on