Information about Cairo Opera House, tours, Booking
Cairo Opera House is a part of Cairo’s National Cultural Center. Moreover, it is the main performing arts venue in the Egyptian capital. Cairo Opera House is the home to most of Egypt‘s finest musical groups. It located on the southern part of Gezira Island in the Nile River. It is in the Zamalek district west of and near downtown Cairo. In fact, Cairo Opera House inaugurated on October 10, 1988. The funds for the complex were a gift from the nation of Japan to Egypt. It was as a result of President Hosni Mubarak’s visit to Japan in April 1983. In fact, the construction of Cairo Opera House began in May 1985.
In fact, the work lasted for three years. President Mubarak and Prince Tomohito of Mikasa inaugurated Cairo Opera House. It was in October 1988. Prince Tomohito of Mikasa was the younger brother of the Japanese Emperor. Moreover, it was the first time for Japan to stage a Kabuki show in Africa or the Arab World. It is a traditional popular drama with singing and dancing. Royal Philharmonic Orchestra chose Cairo Opera House as a venue for their first performance. In fact, it was their first performance in the Middle East and Africa in January 2007.
Khedivial Opera House:
In 1869, Khedive Ismail gave instructions to build an opera house. It was to celebrate the opening of the Suez Canal. In fact, it called Khedivial (Royal) Opera House. It meant as a lasting and outstanding symbol of the arts of drama and music. Furthermore, the opera house designed by Italian architects Avoscani and Rossi. It completed in six months, in the center of Cairo near the Azbakeya district. The Khedive commissioned a performance which would reflect the ancient Egyptian history. French archaeologist Auguste Mariette Bey, in the Khedive’s service, wrote a plot. It served the respected Italian librettist Antonio Ghislanzoni as a basis for his libretto. Giuseppe Verdi appointed to compose the music. The result was the famous opera Aida. It is with its heroic quality, powerful dramatic scenes and its passionate music.
The sets and costumes for the premiere of Aida could not transported from Paris in time. In fact, it was because of delays caused by the Franco Prussian war. Moreover, in 1869 the Opera House opened instead with Verdi’s Rigoletto. It was indeed one of Verdi’s earlier masterpieces. Aida would receive its world premiere in Cairo in 1871. Moreover, Aida not commissioned for the inauguration of the Suez Canal. It is contrary to general belief. Khedivial Opera was the first one in Africa to perform world famous operas. Furthermore, it was also the first one to perform symphonic masterpieces. In fact, in October 28, 1971, Khedivial Opera House completely destroyed by a fire. It was in the early morning.
Cairo Opera house Performance spaces:
Main Hall: Seats 1,300 people in its four levels. It also include orchestra seating, three tiers and a presidential box. It used for operas and orchestra and ballet performances.
Small Hall: Seats up to 500 people on a single floor; used for chamber music and recitals. Can double as a large reception hall for important events.
Open-air Theater: Designed square shaped stage used for outdoor performances, seats 600 people.