Nass Makan: Swiss-Egyptian Music Encounter 2019

Nass Makan – Swiss-Egyptian Music Encounter 2019. Last arrangements before the concert in Cairo (photo: Johannes Rühl)

Residence of three Swiss musicians together with the Egyptian Mazaher ensemble in Cairo and Fayoum. Intensive musical exchange and rehearsal with final concert in the Egyptian Center for Culture and Arts – Makan in Cairo.

In this intensive workshop the musicians of mainly traditional and improvised music from Egypt and Switzerland worked on their musical differences and similarities, to find a common musical language on this basis. Not the easy «groove» was the goal but a sensitive approach and the development of new musical experiences and possibilities.

A project by Pro Helvetia Cairo, Makan Cairo, and Norient


Sara Käser (cello)
Hans Hassler (accordion)
Elias Menzi (hammered dulcimer)

Traditional Zar Ensemble Mazaher (Egypt, Cairo)
Om Sameh (main vocal, mazhar)
Om Hassan (back vocal, doholla)
Sabah Back (vocal, mazhar, sagat)
Rafaat Tamboura (hana, main vocal)
Sayed El Araby (back vocal, mangour, mazhar)
Abdalla Kawala Salem (main vocals, hana)
El Shankahawy (back vocals, sagat, hana)
Shadya Mazhar (back vocals)


Ahmed El Maghraby (Makan)
Johannes Rühl (Norient)



Sara Käser (cello) and Amin Shahin (arghoul) (photo: Johannes Rühl)
Rehearsal in al-Fayyūm (photo: Johannes Rühl)
Some instructions for Elias Menzi at the tanbura (photo: Johannes Rühl)
Sara Käser, Elias Menzi, Hans Hassler, the Mazaher Ensemble and Ahmed El Maghraby, director of Makan (photo: Johannes Rühl)
The final concert at Makan in Cairo (photo: Johannes Rühl)