Cairo In One Breath

A portrait of the adghan (call to prayer) in Cairo, Egypt.

NR, 80 minutes

This screening is part of: THE SEVENTH ART STAND

Post-show discussants: Dr. Ahmed Taha (Muslim-American Society), Amani Ayad (UNESCO Center for Global Citizenship)

The adhan is the Muslim call to prayer, an invitation tos sacred space traditionally performed by a muezzin at a mosque five times each day. Cairo has thousands of mosques, and with countless muezzins chanting the call simultaneously there is a holy cacophony that reverberates through the city’s soundscape. Enter the Ministry of Religious Endowments with the concept of a unified adhan, a single call from one muezzin broadcast from a central studio to a network of mosques, each relaying the adhan through its own sound system. This beautiful and timely film is full of rich details of everyday life and maintains a quiet respect for the range of opinions voiced on either side of this somewhat unpopular edict. In a culture still unsettled by recent revolution, the idea of any kind of unification is controversial, and the loss of local traditions and individual voices is deeply felt. Featuring a post-show conversation. (2016, Anna Kipervaser, US/Egypt, 80 min, NR, Eng subtitles)

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