The journey had not been completed; at least with the Sisters, at hand. No, folks, they were due for another stand-ing OVATION, that is. This time, it would be in the gardens (April 5, 2019 at 7:00pm). The Greek campus, gardens, in fact. Ah! The gardens. Another haven for woman’s oasis. It is all part of the plan for Mother Nature. Wouldn’t you agree? On this occasion, no one would be alone during T time. For maidens of other cultural gardens, would be present. Prior to T time, in the garden, the musical maidens of Egypt would bring forth their cultural tunes. But, that is what happens. When you enter into a different cultural garden, the Maidens of that garden come knocking to serenade you. It is beautiful and luscious, wouldn’t you agree?
My first showing up at DECAF-a festival of contemporary music and arts, in the heart of Downtown, Cairo. An on going paradise of musical artistry and aesthetics! Spectacular to the very core. Later during the day, it would be T time. Just as fascinating and enriching to enjoy the sweetness and taste of T. Prior to that, were the aesthetic foundations (and performances) of Egyptian women musicians. In certain songs, I heard the rhythm of R&B, Funk, trinkled in with whispers of the Arabic language. Then, the traditional and folkloric musicalities of Eygptian-Arab music came into play; reminding us that we were in the comforts and safety of the women of this land-of this city. There was nothing to fear. The soothing words of their tongues, and whispers of their eloquent style, would keep us safe. That including us foreign dames. Ethiopia also made her presence; reminding us that she is nearby and too, can perform in the aesthetics of that space.
Looking slightly afar, the kaleidoscopic designs danced across the stage. Moving around as the eloquence of paintings, designs, and Universal shaping can only do, the stage became a transition into a fictional paradise. Only this time, it got to match with reality. One of the beauties and pleasures of such was observing the power, in the movement of woman. How this movement is complementary to man’s existence. You could observe this with Egyptian men, musicians onstage; along with their female counterparts. The fascination continues. For in all of this, one of the many steps was feeling the euphoria of something called. . .music. I could feel every aura in my being. Worries and frustrations of that moment, were no longer a concern. Those of us coming to be entertained (and healed), were simply allowed to. . .be. Of different cultures, nations, and backgrounds, we were allowed to feel our unity, through the power of music. The spacing was just right. The freedom of mobility was very clear.
Dancing with others, or dancing alone. However, you wanted to make it, was simply the right time to feel the eloquence (and design) of people and music. That, and their ability to cross into the musical cultures of others, in order to experience their story. As a Black American maiden, I experienced such, when being approached by an Egyptian-Arab woman singer, and her telling me that I have a beautiful face. Her telling me of her fascination with my Black American culture; her interest in the her/history and style. It was all part of that holistic healing of recognition, among women. For women to recognize each other; honor each other; and acknowledge one another in foreign (or familiar) spacing is the very essence of women’s empowerment. It is the practicality of spreading love among women; regardless of our complexities and variations. In fact, woman’s myriad variety is what makes her. . .FABULOUS!
Moving forward into the performance of the T Sisters, the nurturing effect of music from the United States of America, took place. One facet of America’s garden was in full view. It was delicate, soft, powerful, and inviting. . .all in one. Songs from the previous concert were re-born. And, the energetic balance was expanding within the Downtown area. The presence of one personnel, from the U. S. Embassy in Cairo, and her speech in bringing that artful décor back into the Downtown Tahrir area in Cairo, further highlighted this balance of energy. For in her speaking of its existence, it was happening. It was coming to life. And this musical endeavour, along with the T Sisters, was making it happen. In the element of healing, music is warm and inviting; an anecdote of beauty, rejuvenation, and the re-vitalizing of spaces, which appeared to be “forgotten.”
Listening to the T Sisters perform during that concert, profoundly resonated with the cultural mission, at hand. The cultural mission of American artists and writers (based in Egypt), and the U.S. Embassy to connect with Egypt in a way, where musical cultural is the first form of diplomacy. Connecting with each nations’ humanity, and their ability to observe each other, in the performance of creativity. One cannot help, but to understand the power of such thinking. The artistry and style of being Egyptian. The artistry and style of being American. If one could paint a masterpiece of these two, what would they be?
Well, on this night particular night, that question was already answered. Wouldn’t you agree? A variety of musical paintings were already at work. The paintbrushes had previously been selected. The colors were being mixed. And so, the artists were beginning their work. Observing the craftsmanship, one could not help but notice, that music and the visual arts were being merged, together. It was more so, in a literary way.
As another T time was taking place (another evening, of course), the whispers of memory continued to unfold. Some of it related to the power and beauty of songs, which make us. . .remember. Other moments of the night, allowed for visitors to simply enjoy the breaths of life. . .in every inhaling of that word. Our Sisters didn’t forget to end with one of our favourite girl anthems, of that time. Departing the stage was just a foreshadow of future performances and aesthetics of America’s soils, water, and vegetation to come. Those natural elements of America’s heritage and culture, needing to be seen by the rest of the world. The United States of America in her naturalness, and desire, to present a healthier and holistic image of her Being. While also observing and celebrating that same Beauty in Egypt, and other nations of the world. A little DECAF in the garden. A little T to highlight the way.