Remember when Egyptian singer Haifa Wehbe broke the internet by wearing an all too revealing outfit during her performance? Well that happened a few months ago, but it feels like Egypt's Musicians Syndicate has woken up to what they call "immodesty" on stage.
The government body released a new set of rules for female music artists and has asked them to cover up while performing on stage. Members of the board defended their decision by stating that musicians shouldn't indulge in "tasteless art."
Board member Nadia Mostafa said that their resolution will be effective in weeding out songs that have cheap lyrics and music performances that celebrate it. Members of the Musicians Syndicate took a somewhat nationalist stance when they mentioned that "1960s patriotic song El-Wattan El-Akbar, performed by several singers, qualifies as decent," reported Albawaba.
Nadia Mostafa further said that for now, the rules stand clear for concerts, but the governing agency may look music videos later.
Singer Mostafa Kamel also felt that the implementation of the board's decision would help "cleanse the music scene, which has been in decline for years."
News of the dress code for performances have garnered mixed response from the music industry.
Music critic Tarek El-Shennawy said, "Instead of focusing on the dress code of singers, Shaker should be focusing on developing art and refining it during these difficult times."
El-Shennawy targeted the board's president Hany Shaker and said it is hypocritical of him to pass such a rule when Shaker himself has acted in films with belly dancers.
His contemporary from Egypt's music scene, harpist Manal Mohy El-Din was shocked and said, "It's so ridiculous that it leaves one speechless, we're supposed to have bypassed this stage of discourse already."
When asked if music artists would be penalised for defying the rules, Mostafa said that they would be given a warning and could face an investigation in the face of continuous transgressions.