Montreal, August 2007— A team from Quebec will be leaving for Cairo in the next few days to produce a unique show on September 7th in front of the pyramids on the Giza plateau.
The Egyptian government has granted permission for Chantal Chamandy
, Beladi, A Night at the Pyramids
, featuring the Cairo Symphony Orchestra, to be presented before an audience of several thousand people. Chantal Chamandy one of only a handful of artists, which includes Sting
, Julio Iglesias
, The Grateful Dead
and Egyptian stars Fairouz and Magda al-Roumy, to have access to this majestic site for a live performance.
Montreal singer-songwriter Chantal Chamandy, who is of Egyptian origin, will be performing at this site, accompanied by the Cairo Symphony and her own musicians. She will also be joined by her dancers, along with an Egyptian dance troupe including Ahmed Nabil, principal dancer with the Cairo Opera House Ballet Company. The show will be distributed to all the stations of the PBS (Public Broadcast System) network in the United States. It will be officially presented to international broadcasters at the MIPCOM (Marché international du film et de la Télévision in Cannes) in October. Discussions with broadcasters in Canada and Quebec are currently underway as well.
Returning to her roots
Chantal Chamandy, who was born in Alexandria, Egypt, and raised in Montreal, saw the possibility of realizing her dream of singing in her homeland before one of the great wonders of the world. "It's a unique opportunity for me: that's why I had to work with the world's top producers of this type of performance. I'm very proud to showcase the talents and skills of Quebec performers and artistic and technical experts who have worked on world-class productions. This show will be a magical moment in my life," said Ms. Chamandy.
The project's origins date back more than a year when Ninemuse Entertainment's production team sought authorization from the Egyptian government to use this exceptional site.
A world-class team
Award-winning French director Gérard Pullicino, who has produced and directed shows by such megastars as Celine Dion
, Johnny Hallyday and Joe Cocker
, will direct the concert. "This is an exciting project for me since it turns this remarkable archeological site, the last wonder of the ancient world, into my playground. I'm also delighted to discover a new artist. Chantal is very human, and the concept she has come up with for the show is an outstanding opportunity for viewers to see Egypt and its wonders through her eyes, in a modern staging. She is returning to the country of her birth, and it is this magic and emotion I will attempt to capture in the show," said Mr. Pullicino.
A large team of Quebec artistic and technical experts will be taking part in this production, including set designer Guy St-Amour, who worked on Cirque du Soleil's LOVE and on the production of Tohu. Choreographer Geneviève Dorion-Coupal will serve as the show's co-artistic director, along with Chantal Chamandy. Her previous projects include Cirque du Soleil's LOVE, Génération Motown and Celine Dion's show Unison. Lighting designer Matthieu Larrivée (Simple Plan
, Diana Krall
, Alanis Morissette
) will bring out all the natural beauty of the pyramids and the Sphinx.
The concert to be distributed to the PBS network
Chantal Chamandy's concert will be distributed to all of the stations of the PBS network. The show will be available to begin airing in March 2008. Television viewers will be able to enjoy the performance, which will also include cultural, historical and tourist elements, with commentary by the singer-songwriter. "It is fantastic that this production can be captured and eventually seen by hundreds of thousands of people in North America. I am happy that this event and tv show will enable me to perform before the Egyptian audience, but I also want it to serve as a window into the cultural richness of my ancestral country. From an artistic point of view, it is extraordinary to produce a concert that will be distributed on such a large scale," added Mrs. Chamandy.
A unique stage design for a unique location
The stage will be set up in front of The Great Pyramid of Giza and the Sphinx, and its dimensions will measure up to grandeur of the site. It was created by Guy St-Amour, who has won a number of awards for his stage designs. His unique multi-level design includes a stage for some forty musicians from the Cairo Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Chamandy's band will be on a second stage, and a huge central stage will accommodate dozens of dancers from Quebec and Cairo, who will perform numbers especially choreographed for her songs. Multi angle cameras will tape the live show from many angles, to highlight the performances and the unique archeological setting in which the show is being presented. The concert will be taped in five languages: English, French, Arabic, Spanish and Italian.
About Chantal Chamandy
With the release of her album Love Needs You
in spring 2007, Chantal Chamandy shot into the top 100, based on Soundscan's figures for album sales in Canada. This past February, her single Feels Like Love
climbed the charts only three weeks after its release, reaching 25th spot in the BDS top 50 and 10th spot in the top 25 for the adult contemporary category. The single was certified platinum by the CRIA (Canadian Recording Industry Association) in 2007.