Voices and Faces of the Adhan: Cairo

Voices and Faces of the Adhan: Cairo

A muezzin calls Islamic worshippers to prayer from the minaret of a mosque five times a day, in a 1,400-year-old tradition called the adhan. In Cairo, a city of 4,000 mosques, that tradition is about to disappear.

In 2006, the Egyptian government approved a proposal called the Adhan Unification Project to systematize the call to prayer. Under this plan, set to go into effect in 2010, the adhan will be reduced to a single recording of one muezzin reciting the adhan, which will then be broadcast throughout the city using wireless receivers.

The filmmakers plan to document and honor the tradition of the adhan before it ceases to exist, by filming in the myriad neighborhoods of the 83-square-mile city of Cairo the five daily calls to prayer. They will juxtapose interviews with muezzin and religious scholars with interviews with people on the street.

Hartley Update

On Look Films is currently in preproduction for Voices and Faces of the Adhan: Cairo. They are identifying experts and scholars and planning a research and development trip to Cairo to finalize location scouting and secure housing, equipment and other necessary elements for principal photography, which must be completed by the end of 2009. On Look Films is actively pursuing production funds for this project.

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