Zeinat Sedki زينات صدقي- a retrospective (Part 1)

This is the first part of a retrospective in Arabic of the career of Egyptian comedienne Zeinat Sedki (1913-1978).
Born Zeinab Mosaad in Alexandra, Egypt in 1913, she attended school for only a short time as her father considered a rudimentary education to be sufficient for his daughter. At 15 she was married but the marriage didn’t last long. Following her divorce she earned a living by dancing at weddings but her family didn’t approve so she fled to Syria. On her return she met Najuib al Rihani and joined his troupe. He also changed her name from Zeinab with a ‘b’ to Zeinat with a ‘t’ to avoid confusion with a well known actress. Her surname remained the same as she’d been using Sedki since the time she left her family. Zeinat Sedki became a regular face on Arabic movie screens appearing with, amongst many others, Farid al Atrache, bellydancers Samia Gamal and Taheya Karioka and regularly with Ismail Yassin. Unfortunately in her later years she had little work and as a result, disappeared from the screen. She died in 1978.

Taheya Karioka (1958) تحية كاريوكا‎

Legendary Egyptian bellydancer Taheya Karioka in a scene from the 1958 film ‘Habibi Al Asmar’ (My Dark Sweetheart حبيبي الأسمر). Taheya shared top billing in this movie with Samia Gamal and actors Shukri Sarhan and Youssef Wehbi. The music for the movie was composed by Mohamed Abdel Wahab.

Aziza Zemblek (1951) عزيزة زمبلك

The first dancer in this clip is actor/singer Omar al Gizawy. He’s joined by Mahmoud Abdel Aziz while Omar al Gizawy plays the rebaba. Finally they’re joined by Aziza Zemblek. The scene’s from the 1951 Egyptian film (or 1952 depending on which website you look at) titled ‘The Beauty’s Cheek’ (Al Khad al Gamal خد الجميل ). Aziza Zemblek’s surname is spelt several different ways in English ie Zamblek, Zambalek, Zambalek etc
The film starred Samia Gamal, Mary Munib, Zomoroda, Hasan Fayak, Shekuku and Suad Mekkawi.
Trivia: Aziza Zemblek also appeared in ‘The Falcon’ (Al Saqr الصقر ) a Samia Gamal film from 1950.

Samia Gamal (1951) سامية جمال

Samia Gamal dances in a scene from the December 1951 Egyptian film ‘Al Khad al Gamil’ (The Beauty’s Cheek خد الجميل). The singer with her is Mahmoud Abdel Aziz.
‘Al Khad al Gamil’ was released in December 1951 and starred Samia Gamal and Mahmoud Abdel Aziz (of course) along with Zomoroda (her name means ‘Emerald’), comedian/singer Mahmoud Shekuku, Mary Munib, Omar al Gizawy and Suad Mekawi.

Samia Gamal (1952)

Samia Gamal dances as the introductory credits roll at the start of the Egyptian film ‘Al Khad al Gamil’ (The Beauty’s Cheek خد الجميل). The singer is Mahmoud Abdel Aziz (عبدالعزيز محمود). The film was released in December 1951 and starred Samia Gamal and Mahmoud Abdel Aziz (of course) along with Zomoroda (her name means ‘Emerald’), Mahmoud Shekuku, Mary Munib, Omar al Gizawy and Suad Mekawi.

Samia Gamal (1952) جمال‎ سامية

This is the ‘all singing all dancing’ grand finale from the 1952 Egyptian film ‘Ma takulshi la hada’ (Don’t Tell Anyone ماتقولش لحد) which starred Farid al Atrache, Samia Gamal and Lebanese born singer Nour al Hoda along with Stefan Rosti and Abdel Salam Al Nabulsi.
Movie trivia: Actor Abdel Salam al Nabulsi (1899-1968) was born in Lebanon but travelled to Cairo to attend university and while there he discovered acting.  His family back in Tripoli got wind of his change of direction and cut off financial support in the hope that this would get him back on the right track.  Thankfully, it didn’t.

Samia Gamal and Farid al Atrache (1952)

Egyptian bellydancer Samia Gamal performs in a scene from the 1952 film ‘Don’t Tell Anyone’ (Ma Takulshi la Hada ماتقولش لحد). The film starred Farid Al Atrache who is the male singer performing with her in this scene. The film also starred singer Nour Al Hoda, Stefan Rosti and Abdel Salam Al Nabulsi.

Samia Gamal (1950)

Samia Gamal dances and Souad Makawee sings in a 1950 film ‘Asmar wa gameel’ (Dark and Handsome أسمر وجميل). The man with the moustache is a well known Egyptian comedian of the time, Mahmoud Shekuku, who was usually known by just his surname. The film also starred Mahmoud Abdul Aziz, Marie Munib and Mohamed al Bakker.

The word ‘asmar’ means ‘brown’.

Samia Gamal (1953) جمال‎ سامية

Legendary Egyptian bellydancer Samia Gamal performs in a scene from the 1953 Egyptian drama ‘Ketar al Layl’ (The Night Train قطار الليل ) which also starred Emad Hamdi, Stefan Rosti and Seraj Mounir. Emad Hamdi is the man in the trenchcoat in this scene.
Movie trivia: The lead male actor, Emad Hamdi, was married to singer Shadia and later to actress/dancer Nadia al Jundi. He was a busy man as he was also married to bellydancer Houriya Mohamed at one time.  Maybe he liked trains too as, along with this film ‘The Night Train’, he also starred in ‘Sayyedet Al Ketar’ (The Lady of the Train) in 1952 and ‘Ketar Al Neel’ (The Nile Train) in 1953.

Samia Gamal (1951) سامية جمال

Same song, same movie as in one of the previous posts but this time the song ‘Dayman Maak’  is set in a stage show in this clip from the 1951 Egyptian romantic comedy ‘Taal salem’ (Say Hello تعال سلم).
Samia Gamal is the dancerand Farid al Atrache is the singer. Farid al Atrache plays Meshmesh, a poor singer who works as a waiter in a nightclub while waiting for his chance at the big time. Samia Gamal plays Sakra a famous bellydancer whose father (Abdel Fatah al Kassry) owns the nightclub where Meshmesh works. Meshmesh secretly loves Sakra but he knows he has no chance until, to everyone’s surprise, including his own, he inherits a fortune. The film also starred Ismail Yassin, Zeinat Sedki and a very young Farid Shawki.