A Demonstration of Love and Appreciation During the Lady of Arab Theater Symposium

A Demonstration of Love and Appreciation During the Lady of Arab Theater Symposium, in the Presence of SITFY’s Stars…


Samiha Ayoub: The audience is the first thing I see when I stand on stage


Amr Dawara: Documenting the history of Samiha Ayoub will highly benefit all generations… She is the iconic star of all generations and an iconic acting figure in the Arab theater


Ashraf Zaki: Samiha Ayoub is a role model in values and morals… I learnt how to master the art of management from her


Sharm El-Sheikh International Theater Festival for Youth (SITFY), under the supervision of actor and director Mazen El-Gharabawy, celebrates the distinguished artistic career of the Lady of Arab Theater, Samiha Ayoub, whom the sixth edition bears her name. A symposium was held honoring the iconic actress, Samiha Ayoub, presented by Dr. Mustafa Selim and moderated by director Mazen El-Gharabawy. The symposium includes: Head of the Artists’ Syndicate, Dr. Ashraf Zaki and Dr. Amr Dawara (author of the book tackling Samiha Ayoub’s artistic career).


On his part, Dr. Mustafa Selim emphasized that SITFY currently celebrates a new product of its publications that documents a significant stage in the history of Egyptian theater, by theatrical director and historian, Dr. Amr Dawara. Furthermore, El-Gharabawy pointed out that SITFY is proud that the sixth edition bears the name of the Lady of Arab Theater and is grateful for Samiha Ayoub, being the festival’s honorary president since the first edition.


Moreover, El-Gharabawy declares that this honor is long overdue, for the new generations have the right to be aware of and learn about the inspirational history of the iconic actress, Samiha Ayoub. El-Gharabawy launched an initiative for cooperation between the Syndicate of Artists and SITFY’s Film Committee, in order to make use of the Syndicate’s theater to film multiple episodes with iconic actress, Samiha Ayoub, documenting her artistic journey.


Dr. Ashraf Zaki tackles his work memories as an assistant director with Samiha Ayoub in “Demaa Ala Setar Al-Ka’ba” play. During that period, Zaki learnt a lot about her ability to act brilliantly, and her mastery of the art of management, in addition to being a role model in values, ethics and cooperation.


Zaki declares that Dr. Amr Dawara’s book does not only document the history of Samiha Ayoub, but also documents a significant stage in the history of Egyptian theater.


During his speech, Dr. Amr Dawara emphasized that his book allows the audience to learn about Samiha Ayoub’s career in art, acting, directing and management. The book also sheds light on her relationship with her colleagues. The book includes 9 chapters and 4 indexes for Ayoub’s theatrical works, and works with iconic directors and authors. Additionally, the book also tackles the works in which Ayoub encouraged her colleagues by giving them the opportunity to present prominent roles -during her management work- including: Suhair Al-Babli, Mohsina Tawfik, Aida Abdelaziz, Ferdous Abdelhamid, and Rajaa Hussien.


Additionally, he pointed out that documenting the history of Samiha Ayoub will benefit all generations, for she is the iconic star of all generations and an iconic acting figure in the Arab theater. She has lived through the greatest artistic generations periods since the fifties. Dawara also states: Egyptian theaters should be named after Samiha Ayoub, for she deserves that. Dawara called upon the Dean of the Higher Institute of Theatrical Arts to allow writing scientific researches about Samiha Ayoub.


Eventually, Dawara concluded his speech by emphasizing that this book was a great challenge as it documents an outstanding artistic career. It includes a documentation of Samiha Ayoub’s relationship with Abdullah Gaith as the knight of the Egyptian theater and her relationship with her lifetime friend, Sanaa Gamil and the works they presented together, switching their theatrical roles daily in “Dingwan” play (directed by Nabil Al-Alfi). Additionally, the book highlights the fact that she is the first female director of state-owned theaters, as well as working with 4 prominent international directors.


Samiha Ayoub states: “I get to know myself through your talk about me… Within me, a humble person who sees that she did not present much”. Ayoub adds: “I feel alive when I sense artistic jealousy around me; the great numbers of artworks lead to knowing the good ones, for the self-confident artist sees that the artistic community is ready to release multiple works”.


Ayoub notes: “the audience is the first thing I see when I stand on stage, for I draw my strength and feeling from the audience and I feel alive… When I feel united with the audience, I become ready to present my roles”.


After listening to Samiha Ayoub’s speech, star Elham Shahin declares that she felt we had already missed a lot, for each generation has fewer opportunities than the one before. Shahin states: “I feel proud that an Egyptian artist was able to present all these diversified works with iconic international and Egyptian directors, for Ayoub represents a model for a respected, civilized artist with great values”.


Shahin adds: “Egypt’s culture and art are the greatest notions ever… Our voice has always reached the whole world… However, the circumstances have deteriorated and the audiences demand presenting works that suit their tastes… But we are supposed to enhance people’s artistic taste and encourage them to watch real art and change them… Nowadays, there is bullying against art and artists after the spread of social media platforms… I wish that one of the Egyptian theaters would be named after Samiha Ayoub, so that her name will be immortalized throughout history”.


Dr. Samira Mohsen states: “I was honored to present my very first play “Khayal Al-Zel” with Samiha Ayoub, who loved me a lot and encouraged me to build my self-confidence and self-esteem… She was dealing with me as a friend and has always defended me… When she was asked: Who is your successor? She replied: Samira Mohsen… She encouraged me through these words and since that day, we have been friends”.


The symposium was held in the presence of a number of artists and critics, most notably: Elham Shahin, Boussi Shalabi, Amal Al-Dabbas, Dr. Rania Fathallah, Ahmed Seyam, Ehab Fahmi, Samira Mohsen, Abou Al-Hassan Sallam, and Dr. Medhat Al-Kashef.

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