Soraya Hassan (1952) ثريا حسن

This is a little known Egyptian bellydancer named Soraya Hassan dancing in a scene from the 1952 film ‘Qaleel al Bakht’ (The Unlucky One قليل البخت).  Born in 1924 Soraya Hassan was an actress-dancer who had small roles in several Egyptian films during the 1950s but then faded from view.  The same story holds for the dancer on her right whose name was Gina.
The film starred Shadia who’s the female singer in this scene. The male singer is a young Galal Shafik.  Also starring are Ismail Yassin, Kamal al Shennawi and Zamoroda (sitting at the table) and Mahmoud el Meliji.


Shadia شادية and Wedad Hamdy وداد حمدي (1952)

Love this scene from the 1952 film ‘Beit al Nattash’ (بيت النتاش) which starred Ismail Yassin, Shadia, Zeinat Sedki and Abdel Fattah al Kasry. In this scene Shadia is the singer and the boy is Omar al Gizawy. Wedad Hamdy is playing the part of the maid, she’s great and such a good dancer.
Sadly Wedad Hamdy was murdered in 1994 by an intruder at her home.

‘The Great Homeland’ (Al Watan al Akbar) الوطن الأكبر‎

The title of this song is  الوطن الأكبر‎ ‘The Great Homeland’ and features singers Abdel Halim Hafez, Sabah, Shadia, Faiza Kamel, Warda and Nagat Al Saghira.  The song lyrics were written by Ahmed Shafiq Kamel and the music composed by Mohamed Abdel Wahab to celebrate the union of Egypt and Syria to form the United Arab Republic. Mohamed Abdel Wahab is also the conductor in this clip.  The union of the two nations began in 1958 and ended when Syria withdrew from the union in 1961.
The full translation of the lyrics below is courtesy of Chris in Istanbul who contributes to the Arabic Music Translation website, shukran Chris. Thank you also to Hani for reminding me to upload this…..sorry it took so long. And a bit of movie trivia: Nagat al Saghira, one of the singers in this clip, and actress Suad Hosni were sisters.
The translation of the song lyrics is as follows:
My country, my beloved
The greatest country
Its triumphs fill its life
Each day its glories grow
My country grows and is liberated
My country, my country

Abdel Halim Hafez:
My country oh angel your love is in my heart
Oh one who called for unity tomorrow
You are great, and much more great
My country, oh country of the Arab people
After you saw the beauty of revolution
From the whole universe, from all immortality

My country
My beloved country

You are sweet, oh glory that fills our hearts
You are sweet, oh unity, oh mosque of our peoples
Oh, infectious melody between the oceans
In Yemen, Damascus and Jeddah
You are sweet, oh victory, oh cup that saw us
You are sweet, oh sweetest melody in our lives
Between Marrakech and Bahrain
The same tune for a perfect unity

The unity of all the Arab people
My country my beloved

Faiza Kamel:
Our nation that we protect
A paradise that pleases he who makes peace
Look at Beirut after the aggression
The strength and power of the people has increased
Candles all around her
And hellfire pours upon her enemies
Where is colonialism and tyranny?
And Port Said’s story harboured enmity

The Arab people have lived and triumphed
My country, my beloved

My country, most precious country in the world
My country that builds with the builders
The voice, your voice is free and Arab
Oh, you whose soil is the makeup of my eye
My country, oh fortress of freedom
And you tear down slavery
No eastern or western echo
Oh, you whose love is perfume that invigorates me

You are my beloved my Arab country
My country my beloved

My country, oh revolution against their colonialism
If we all seek martyrdom for you
Colonialism will meet its end at our hands
Not in Algeria or Oman
Fill your isles with fire that destroyed them
The stone of your mountains will combat them
Gone from the world is its time
The revolution will destroy tyranny

Nothing but the triumph of the Arab people
My country my beloved

Najat al Saghira:
My country, oh, paradise that all envy
Oh, you whose canal returned to your hands
Take from the bounty of your dam
Oh, you whose highness is in our worshipping hearts
Of its glories and wonders
And you preserve the good of the world
Make, plant and build with its light
My country whose whole life is sovereign

Country of glory, the Arab country
My country my beloved

Abdel Halim Hafez:
My country who crawls towards its triumphs
In Palestine and our rebelling south
We are a country that protects and does not threaten
Oh, you who lives a life of glory
We will complete your freedoms
We are a country that preserves and does not waste

The country of glory, my Arab country
My country my beloved.

Katkouta (1959) قطقوطة

Zills/sagat by Egyptian bellydancer Katkouta in a scene from the 1959 tear jerker ‘Al Mar’ah al Majhoula’ (The Unknown Woman) which starred Shadia, Kamal al Shinawi and Mahmoud Tho Al Fiqar (Zulfiqar) and tells the story of a woman who leaves her husband and young son. Over the years she becomes a nightclub singer, turns to drink and is eventually saved from prison by her son who, unknown to her, has become a lawyer.