FILE – Shadia
CAIRO – 30 November 2017: In honor of the iconic Egyptian singer and actress Shadia, Egypt Today lists ten interesting and surprising facts about her life and career.
Shadia's maternal family is Turkish.
Her father, who worked as an engineer in the royal farms, supported her impressive talents; she often presented herself as a singer in family occasions.
One of her father's friends once praised young Shadia’s talents and told her father that Shadia will become an iconic star.
Shadia is a stage name
Shadia's original name is Fatma; the name Shadia was given to her by the legendary Egyptian director Helmy Raflah.
More than 110 Films
The multitalented singer and actress Shadia enriched the Egyptian cinema with 114 films, including five films based on Naguib Mahfouz's novels, most notably "El Les Wi El Kelab" [The Thief and the Dogs] and "Al Tareq" [The Road].
She also participated with legendary singer Abdel Halim Hafez in three films, most notably "Maabodet Al Gamaheer" [Audience Idol].
She also acted in the timeless theatrical play "Rayah Wi Skina" [Raya and Skina] in 1983.
Lost her First Love
At the young age of 17, Shadia lost her first love, an army officer serving in the 1948 Palestine War. He was killed during the war.
Mother without Children
Despite the fact that she never had children, Shadia repeatedly performed mother roles in movies.
She got married three times. The first time to the Egyptian journalist Aziz Fathy; the second time to the Egyptian prominent actor Emad Hamdi; and the third time to the Egyptian actor Salah Zulfikar.
She got pregnant twice during her three marriages but, unfortunately, miscarried. Still, she helped in bringing up her nephews and Emad Hamdi's son even after their divorce.
Refused a role written by the late literary legend Naguib Mahfouz
Shadia refused to play part in the iconic classic film “Al-Qahera 30" (Cairo 30), originally based on a novel by Naguib Mahfouz, due to her pregnancy.
Formed with Kamal El-Shennawi the most Celebrated Couple in Cinema
Shadia and Kamal El-Shennawi became one of the most celebrated couples in Egyptian cinema. They presented more than ten films together, most notably "Eish Al Gharam" (Love Nest) and "Wadaa' Fi El Fagr" (Farewell at the Dawn).
Participated in First Egyptian – Japanese Film
Shadia was the heroine of the first Egyptian – Japanese film "Aala Defaf El Nile" (On the Banks of the Nile) in 1961, and after eight years, her film "Shee' Min El Khouf" (Something from Fear) was screened in Japan.
Acted the most iconic scene in Egyptian Cinema
Her scene in "Shee' Min El Khouf" (Something from Fear), where she was opening the water stream (El Hawees), is one of the greatest scenes in Egyptian cinema. The scene was authentically performed.
Retired in her golden age
Shadia retired at the young age of 50 from acting and 52 from singing. Her last film was "La Tas'alni Man Ana" (Do not Ask Me Who I am) in 1984, while her last song was "Khad Be Eidy" (Took My Hands) in 1986. Her decision to retire was influenced by her desire to lead a more spiritual life and achieve inner peace.
Shadia passed away on Tuesday at the age of 86 after being transferred to hospital following a stroke earlier this month. She was hospitalized in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
Sources close to the renowned singer and actress speculated that Shadia’s family did not want to announce that she was being hospitalized to avoid people swarming. At the time, she was in dire need of rest and treatment; consequently, her family preferred to deny the public the news of her severe illness.
After news of her death broke out, many Middle Eastern celebrities, including Youssra, Adel Emam, Nabila Ebeed, Mona Zaki, Ahlam, and Mohamed El Gheti mourned her passing. Shadia was, and always will be, a national treasure.