In September, after Egypt loosened pandemic restrictions, the women of the Al Nour Wal Amal (light and hope) chamber orchestra were able to practice together and perform, albeit with limitations, again. The 48-woman orchestra was founded in the 1960s as a program of the Al Nour wal Amal Association, “the first non-governmental association in the Middle East to help visually impaired girls and women. … it provides care, education, vocational training, job opportunities and integration into society”. Girls interested in joining the orchestra practice five or more hours a day to learn their instrument, then move on to memory training. Orchestra members must memorize the group’s 45-piece repertoire. Now in its fourth generation, the only orchestra of its kind has performed in 25 countries spanning five continents. Read more and hear them perform in Berlin. A short video well narrated in English is available here.