Leila: An Egyptian Musical with a Live Orchestra

Photographs Courtesy of Soft Power Productions


Presenting the audience with a mix between singing, dancing and acting, the Arabic musical Leila, directed by Hany Afifi, aims at reviving the theater scene in Egypt and is a collaboration between the recently established Egyptian Musical Theater and Soft Power Productions.

The one hour and fifty minutes performance follows a couple, Karim and Leila, on their proposal day who encounter the negative effects of the jealousy of their friends who resort to black magic to break them apart.

The musical opened its doors on Thursday, 20 April and will be presented every Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday until 21 May at The Marquee in Cairo Festival City.

Along with the incredible vocals, script and acting of the youthful cast that were written by Ibrahim Maurice, was the exceptional live orchestra performance throughout the musical, headed by conductor Mohamed Saad Basha, which conveyed all the emotions to the audience.

Although the performance was mostly dramatic, there were comedic and light moments where the audience was caught off guard during intense scenes, especially at the beginning, when the couple’s love was expressed through songs and dance, beautifully choreographed by Dalia Farid and which included both hip-hop and jazz dancers.

Leila successfully portrayed the idea of how there are human characteristics more evil than magic and witchcraft, like jealousy, selfishness and spite, which were evident in Iman and Amin, the couple’s two friends, who visited an alleged witch to put a spell on them, a plan that ended up backfiring.

The area in which Leila and Karim lived in was called “El Kheir Street”, which was perfectly represented by their neighbors and friends, and by the colorful decoration put together by Hazem Shebl, as well as the spot-on costumes that reflected each individual’s personality that was well-designed by the talented Mona ElTonsy.

The story behind Leila is timeless and represents issues that are evident in our society today, making it very relatable and enjoyable for the audience, and a performance that is suitable for all ages.