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In Jerusalem, Israelis celebrate nostalgia for Egyptian film music

Israelis, who have remained enthralled with the outpouring of emotion in Egyptian films for decades, rediscover their passion through a series of concerts at Jerusalem’s Museum for Islamic Art.

Though Israel and Egypt fought bitter wars throughout the mid-20th century, Israelis eagerly turned on their black-and-white TVs to watch Egyptian melodramas every Friday for decades. The Museum for Islamic Art in the heart of West Jerusalem now celebrates this nostalgia with five concerts that pay homage to the golden age of the Egyptian cinema.

Firqat Alnoor, an Israeli classical Arabic music ensemble, has been holding a concert series every Tuesday since Jan. 15. The concerts focuses on famous singer-actors from the Egyptian silver screen: Mohammed Abdel Wahab, Umm Kulthum, Asmahan and Farid al-Atrash, Abdel Halem Hafez and Layla Murad. The final “festive” concert, scheduled for Feb. 12, will feature Egyptian music’s greatest hits.

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