Saturday, May 17, 2008

Fierce Stardom: Fifi Abdou

Talk about your baubles, bangles, and beads!

Egypt seems to create a very special kind of star - outsized, extravagant, extreme. And that's something we like a lot.

Here we have one of the most extreme of them all, the fabulous Miss Fifi Abdou - a sensation of what they call raqs sharqi (Eastern dance) and that we call bellydance for more than thirty years, a film star, and most recently a regular on television serials (often playing strong but longsuffering mothers). When Miss Fifi is on screen or on stage, nothing else matters.

I am afraid; I am fascinated; I am helpless in her gaze: the very definition of stardom.

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