This is Lebanese singer and actress Jeanette Georges Feghali who’s better known as Sabah. She was born in Lebanon in 1927 and died in 2014. In the 1940s she was spotted by Lebanese born film director Assia Dagher who signed her for three movies. She moved to Egypt to follow her dream eventually becoming known as ‘Sabah’ (صباح), the character she played in one of her first movies. And the rest, as they say, is history. The featured dancer wearing the galabaya and hipscarf is Nelly Mazloum. Many thanks to Marianna Mazloum for the ID.
Background: In 1960 Sabah was part of the group of famous Arab singers who sang ‘Al Watan al Akbar’ (الوطن الأكبر The Great Homeland) a pan-Arab song written by Mohamed Abdel Wahab to celebrate the 1958 union of Egypt and Syria into the United Arab Republic. The singers were Sabah along with Abdel Halim Hafez, Shadia, Faiza Kamel, Warda and Nagat al Saghira. The union of Egypt and Syria only lasted until 1961 when Syria withdrew from the union following a coup in that country. There were other coups in Syria, in 1963 and again in 1966. It was the 1966 coup that bought the Assads (père et fil) to power.
Here is Nelly Mazloum doing the Spanish influenced part of a fairly long, though varied, performance involving numerous dancers and troupes. The scene is from the 1948 Egyptian film ‘A Sleepless Man’ (Rajol la Yanem رجل لا ينام) which starred Yousef Wehbi, Estefan Rosti, Farid Shawki and Negma Ibrahim. The actress/singer who collapses at the end of the scene is Madiha Yousri though I’m told that she’s not really singing but miming over a recorded track but who knows…..
Nelly Mazloum dances in a scene from the 1957 Egyptian film ‘Ibn Hamido’ (ابن حميدو). The film starred Ismail Yassin and Ahmed Ramzi who are the two men shown sitting at the front table. Hind Rostom also starred and the support cast included Abdel Fatah al Kassri, Riad al Kasabgy, Zeinat Sedki, Tawfik al Deqn (wearing the fez and leaning on the bar) and Wedad Hamdy. The film was directed by Fatin Abdel Wahab.
Nelly Fazloum dances in a scene from the 1950 Egyptian film ‘Makansh alal Bal’ (‘It Wasn’t On My Mind’ or ‘It Was Unexpected’ ماكانش عالبال ). The film starred Raqiya Ibrahim, Doria Ahmed and Kamal al Shinnawi.
Nelly Mazloum was born in Alexandria, Egypt in 1929 and died in Greece in 2003.
Nelly Fazloum (1929-2003) dances in a second scene from the 1950 Egyptian film ‘Makansh alal Bal’ (‘It Wasn’t On My Mind’ or ‘It Was Unexpected’ ماكانش عالبال ). The film starred Raqiya Ibrahim, Doria Ahmed, Kamal al Shinnawi, Seraj Munir, Abdel Wares Asar and Ismail Yassin.