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Dr. Nabil’s Puppets

Dr. Nabil's Puppets

Created in the 10th century as a means of expression and protest, Egyptian shadow theater could have been forgotten with the disappearance of the last master puppeteers. To save this popular form of art, Nabil Bahgat, an Egyptian professor of dramatic arts, and the Wambda troupe have made the transmission of the people's narratives a mission. Wambda performs its plays all over the Mediterranean, but the Egyptian actors have not forgotten that the fight begins in the working class neighborhoods of Cairo, where the traditional tales were born. Every Friday, Doctor Nabil and his companions bring to life leather puppets, some of which are 1500 years old, in the Gamaliyya district. Behind Aragoz, the Egyptian Punch, there is Uncle Saber, 80 years old and with failing eyesight, the last puppet showman in Cairo.

Cairo, Egypt - 2018