04 October 2022 07:13 PM

Yacoup Sannou 15-4-1839 - 1912

Saturday، 15 April 2000 - 12:00 AM

Yacoup Sannou is the pioneer of Arab theatre and (Molière) of Egypt during the 1980s and early 1990s. He enriched the literary and dramatic movement in Egypt and was nicknamed "Abo Nazzara".

Born in 1839 for two Jewish parents. His father worked in the service of Prince Yakan, the grandson of King Mohamed Ali. Yacoup has studied Torah, Bible and Quoran and spoken fluently 13 languages and perfected music, painting and dance. He traveled to Italy to study arts and literature in 1853 and returned in 1855 in order to work in the service of aristocracy and palace.

Sannou lived with the popular (craftsmen, workers & farmers), intermediate and aristocratic brackets in the Egyptian society. He wrote several plays and established his own theatrical troupe to show his own plays. He trained his troupe by himself through his academic study for arts and languages as he read many works for famous dramatists in their original language (mother tongue) especially Molière, Goldoni and Sheridan and shown his plays on Al-Azbakiya Theatre. He established and published several newspapers such as "Abo Zommara", Patriotic Egyptian" and "Islamic World" which criticized Egypt’s internal policies at that time.

Yacoup Sannou established his own theatre in Al-Azbakiya Garden in 1870 and brought women to act on the stage. Khedive Ismail invited him to show his plays on the theatre of Khedive in Qasr el-Nile and he dramatised three novels of social comedy, but Khedive exiled him to France, closed his theatre and dissolved his troupe.

Major works:

- Nation and Freedom.
- Jihady.
- Sheikh el-Hara.
- Sultan of Treasures.
- The Boy (El-Walad).
- Egypt Bourse.
- Friendship.
- Alexandrian Princess.

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