Fine Fixer/Simultaneous Translator for Cairo and Egypt
Arabic <> English
There is a highly recommended fixer/translator in Cairo, Egypt
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Ahmed Seddik has worked with BBC, CNN, CBS, FT, Time Magazine, France 2…
I have hired Mr Seddik on two occasions – once in Egypt and once in Libya. On both occasions he was working as a translator and fixer for the BBC team. We were working in a high pressured environment, doing very long hours and I was extremely impressed with him. He has excellent English – better than any other translator I have worked with so far in the region.
He is confident in dealing with journalists and communicated with the people we interviewed in a respectful and friendly manner. He has a vast knowledge of politics and current affairs as well as the history of Egypt and the wider Middle East. This was invaluable both for interviews and in general conversation.
He is also particularly good at turning dry facts into fascinating anecdotes and was often able to entertain and educate us with interesting stories about Egypt’s history. He is obviously passionate about the country, its history and culture.
What most impressed me about Mr Seddik however is his energy and enthusiasm, even after working for extremely long hours. Many other translators I have worked with have been irritable after working for very long hours, but Mr Seddik remained alert, cheerful and hardworking no matter how many hours he had done.
He was always punctual, courteous and is good at taking the initiative when needed.
BBC World Service
I am a producer for The CBS Evening News, a national nightly newsprogram in the United States. In early February, Correspondent Terry McCarthy and I were sent to Egypt to cover the events of Tahrir Square, and we hired Ahmed as our interpreter, our guide, and what we in the news business call a “fixer” – that is, someone who can arrange the interviews we need, sort through the facts we want, and generally make our lives easier in a foreign country.
Ahmed was amazing. He helped us navigate through Cairo at a very difficult time with a combination of street smarts, great attitude, and an uncanny command of the English language. Also, there is no higher-pressure environment than television journalism, and we had Ahmed working for us about 20 hours a day for 3 weeks; he never failed to jump at the assignment and he never complained.
In Ahmed we found not only an amazing producer, but a great resource for all things Egypt. His offhand knowledge of Egyptian history, of pharaohs and antiquities, of hieroglyphics and pyramids is astounding. He can quote ancient Egyptian texts from memory. In many ways he was our tour guide and history professor on top of everything else.
Erin Lyall George
The CBS Evening News
COPPER POT PICTURES hired Ahmed Seddik to be our fixer when we traveled to Egypt in June 2012 to film WE MUST GO, our documentary about the Egyptian Football team. Though we had tried to sort out various rights and permissions prior to traveling to Egypt, it wasn’t until Ahmed came on board that we started to see results. From permissions with the various football associations to permits from the Egyptian government to our daily transportation, Ahmed arranged everything. It was unbelievable. He is a motivated and capable fixer who assured that everything was taken care of prior to our arrival. Ahmed paved the way for a smooth shoot; we didn’t have to worry about anything except doing our jobs. He met each new challenge and wrinkle to the shoot with a positive attitude and a willingness to see that our wishes were carried out. His services were invaluable. We have shot documentaries around the world and much of the success (or failure) for our projects depend on the talents of our local fixers: I am pleased to say that Ahmed is the best we’ve worked with and I look forward to a continued partnership on WE MUST GO and future Copper Pot projects shot throughout Egypt and the Middle East. My only hesitation in writing this glowing review is that I want to make sure no one else hires him when we need him!
Producer/Director | COPPER POT PICTURES
I am a correspondent with BBC News, based in London. I worked alongside Mr Seddik for almost 2 weeks earlier this year when I was on assignment in Egypt. During that time I found him to be an outstanding
individual who would be an excellent asset to any organization.
Specifically he has an acute awareness of how the media works, the
demands that the modern media operates under, and the need to handle
such demands with clarity, consistency and integrity. His language
skills, especially his knowledge of English, are absolutely first
class and he has an ability to express himself in a manner that many
native English speakers would find difficult to improve upon. I have
absolutely no hesitation in recommending Ahmed Seddik.
BBC TV’s ‘Newsnight’ programme employed Ahmed Seddik as a translator,
researcher, fixer and guide for two weeks in Cairo in November 2011 and
found him to be a resourceful, highly-informed, hard-working and
invariably good-humoured colleague.
Ahmed has a vast store of knowledge about Egypt and its history, as well
as a valuable network of well-placed contacts in many walks of life. He
is a constantly engaging and informative companion and is able to work
calmly and effectively in highly pressured circumstances.
Ahmed was unfailingly cheerful and cooperative when required to work the
extremely long hours often required by TV crews. He is not only an
excellent interpreter/translator with an astonishingly rich and accurate
knowledge of English, but also a fixer with the imagination and
resourcefulness to contribute his own ideas.
TIME Magazine’s Cairo Bureau has periodically employed Mr. Ahmed Seddik for translating assignments since 2004. He has performed all his tasks with a high degree of expertise and professionalism. Mr. Seddik is also extremely well educated and informed about all aspects of Egyptian life, including politics, culture and society. In every way, he has greatly assisted TIME correspondents in their work.
I wholeheartedly recommend Mr. Seddik’s services, and would be delighted to receive any requests for further elaboration on my recommendation.
TIME Middle East Correspondent(since 1995)
I had the opportunity to work with Ahmed Seddik last summer in Cairo, where I was temporarily based as a correspondent for Time Magazine. Though he clearly was far too qualified for the task, he cheerfully served as my translator for a couple of stories. I found him to be a precise interpreter, providing me with excellent translations of what was said in interviews, often a rarity where the need for speed overrides the desire for colorful, exact phrasing.
He also demonstrated a willingness to work long hours, and at the last minute. If I have the opportunity to return to Cairo, I will be sure to use his translation services once again.
Time Magazine Asia
Siamo stati al Cairo per un weekend lungo, purtroppo durante i disordini di
piazza di novembre, che ci hanno impedito di visitare il museo egizio a Piazza
Tahrir. Ma anche senza il museo, il viaggio è stato straordinario. Meravigliose
le piramidi e il plateau di Giza, bellissima la visita alle moschee e alle
strade del cairo islamico, entrambi posti che abbiamo visitato con la nostra
guida Ahmed Seddik, la cui mail era indicata sulla Lonely Planet e che abbiamo
contattato dall’Italia subito prima di partire. Ahmed ha fatto una grande
differenza: è affidabile, preparato, pieno di entusiasmo, appassionato di
storia, archeologia, letteratura, geroglifici e conosce i luoghi come le sue
tasche. Alle piramidi ci ha fatto vedere tombe delle quali non avremmo mai
capito neanche la presenza, ci ha portato a vedere un panorama strepitoso da un
posto un pò più lontano ma senza turisti, e ci ha pagato addirittura lui il
ritorno con il cammello come “regalo” di benvenuto. Con lui ci siamo
avventurati in posti dove non saremmo andati da soli, abbiamo capito tanto
della storia dell’egitto e delle piramidi e anche dell’orgoglio degli egiziani
di oggi. Insomma, posti meravigliosi, clima perfetto.. speriamo che la
situazione politica si tranquillizzi presto, perchè non vediamo l’ora di
tornarci e di portarci anche i nostri figli!
“You are a student of the finer point of the English language.”
Hugh Sykes, BBC, the World at One
I have the privilege to recommend to you Ahmed Seddik as an excellent guide and efficient informant. I am fortunate both to have known Ahmed as a fellow student at the American University in Cairo and to have seen how he developed his college interests into his current profession. Although he makes guiding and lecturing his profession, Ahmed is a veritable renaissance man due to his passion for learning. He delights in learning various subjects and can claim expertise in many. Ahmed has a talent for drawing diverse connections from his numerous interests into any talk or tour. In addition to his tours, Ahmed makes good use of his talent in his frequent lectures on diverse topics at the Sawy Culture Wheel, a famous cultural center and academic forum in Zamalek, and elsewhere.
In the tours I have attended, Ahmed was lively, engaging, and spontaneous. Both the tour to the City of the Dead and Islamic Cairo were chock‐full of information, partly due to Ahmed’s vast memory for fact and stories. On his tours each monument has a story and every side street is another step back in time. The tours I attended lasted about five hours each, although he has told me they can stretch longer or take less time depending on the audience. When I took the Islamic Cairo tour, we went the full length of the Fatimid city from gate to gate in four hours. His tour of Islamic Cairo is especially nice because it takes place in the wee hours of the morning. The streets of the Khan el‐Khalili are amazingly serene at that time, which makes for a stark contrast with the market’s usual chaos. If you should take the tour make sure to see the inside of the mosque and madrasa of Barquq; Sultan Plum had an eye for beauty. On these tours, Ahmed is always thinking about ways to improve and innovate. For example, while leading us through the streets of Islamic Cairo, Ahmed thanked the street cleaners and pondered organizing them to keep the roads cleaner. Ahmed says he has never given the same tour twice. I believe it.
Ahmed’s style of guiding and touring is not like that found on any other tour. It has more artistry in it than the others. But the faint of heart beware, he is more than half a poet. Emblazoned on his business card is the Arabic palindrome malik kalim, meaning “king of words.” And certifiably, he can claim to rule his words. Ahmed is a possessor of a veritable treasury of terms and an arsenal of anecdotes. Don’t think it tedious if he recites a list of synonyms or lines of poetry. Listen attentively. It is all part of the tour.
PhD. Candidate Egyptology
University of Chicago
2013-01-06 02:37:46 UTC