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Volume :12 Issue : 47 1994      Add To Cart                                                                    Download

The Status of Egyptian Drama Immediately Before & After the July Revolution (in Arabic)

Auther : Othman Abdel-Mo'ti Othman

Yousef Wahbi exploited the deterioration of the technical standard of plays presented by the Egyptian Band for Acting & Music before 1950, and decided to run the band as his own private business. Although their plays were of a weak structure, they were well received by the public.

In Oct. 1953, a great opportunity was offered by the Modern Egyptian Band for young playwrights, directors and actors. In Jan. 1953, the Free Theatre Band, subsidized by the government, and the Public Theatre Band (a governmental one), gave performances which lacked any type of intellectual control, and in which patriotic enthusiasm surpassed art. Most bands of that period relied more on quoted, Egyptianized, or translated plays. The play People Downstrairs presented by the Free Theatre Band caused an upheaval in the history of modern drama with respect to the form of Egyptian drama.

In 1956, many disputes took place within the government bands and ended with the resignation of Yousef Wahbi. A decree was issued stipulating the appointment of Ahmad Hamroosh, one of the revolutionary officers, as general manager of the band. Following the tripartite aggression on Egypt, the band presented performances associated with peoples feelings current at that time. In 1957, the revolution government set up the Ministry of Culture & National Orientation, among whose responsibilities were: drama, theatre, musical creativity, singing.. etc. Some playwrights emerged during this period, among whom were Yousif Idrees, Lotfi Al Khouli, Mikhaeel Roman and Fathi Radwan. Their plays were closely connected to drama and the society. However, most plays presented in the post-revolution period and up to the beginning of the 1960s were of a romantic type tinged with propaganda. In 1958, the government band, which acquired a new name The National Theatre, presented carefully selected plays. It is noted that the negative aspects of this period - which constitute the topic of our research - showed that the government did not interfere in literature in general, nor the theatre in particular until 1956, due to the fact that it was too busy with combating imperialism, completing evacuation and changing the infrastructure of the Egyptian society to care for the Humanities & arts.

It is also noted that most actors before and immediately after the revolution cared only for the harmony between form and action, thus neglecting the art, modern methods and the technology of acting, which care for the internal symbol of the character being played. Among the reasons accounting for the absence of the technicalities of decorations, scenes, costume, tricks, theatrical lights... was the lack of any tangible development in this field.

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