An Israeli orchestra played in Cairo for the first time in four decades during Independence Day festivities, according to Israeli news reports on Sunday.
Firqat Alnoor, the Israeli orchestra, was established in 2013 and plays Arabic and Mizrahi music from Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, and North Africa. The orchestra features members of all nationalities, religions, and political identities.
"We have Jews, Arabs, Druze, Christians, religious, non-religious, left and right-wing folks, young and old," says the conductor, music director of the orchestra, and one of its founders, Ariel Cohen in an interview with Ynet.
Israeli Ambassador to Egypt, Amira Oron, said that “events such as these express the way that the words peace and stability, which diplomats use so often, can turn into practical reality,” according to The Jerusalem Post.
“Every day, the staff of the Israeli Embassy in Cairo creates more peace,” Oron said.
The orchestra played during Independence Day celebrations in the Israeli Embassy in Egypt, with Egyptians and foreign dignitaries in attendance.
Firqat Alnoor, which translates to the "light orchestra" in Hebrew, recently played at the 2020 Dubai Expo.
This was the 25-piece orchestra's first trip abroad, performing songs composed from around the Middle East.
The Israeli ensemble has won praise across the Arab world in 2020 after releasing an instrumental rendition of an Emirati hit song in celebration of the then-nascent peace accord struck between the two countries.