Tahiya Zarroug: What An Actress!

By: Aisha Braima

KHARTOUM (Sudanow.info.sd) - Nonpareil actress Tahiya Zarroug, the heroine of Urs Al-Zein (the Wedding of Zein) movie film, presently lives in Canada with her French husband Patrice Marie, who was a lecturer in the University of Khartoum, and their daughter.

Her unique role in the drama in Sudan is portrayed by renowned critic Al-Sir al-Sayyed in the following lines:-

If you decide to be an actor (or actress), it means that you have chosen a career in which you have to assume a variety of human roles ranging from a man of religion, a whore, a tyrant, a freedom fighter, poor, rich, liberal and prisoner of war. An actor or actress is the only innovator who manifests time and place not in language, like the novel style for instance, but as a human being, employing bodily, emotional and sentimental expressions. A true actor (or actress) is the one who possesses the talent of communication and the ability of charming the audience like a conjurer or soothsayer. This is capacity which is known as the acting power that is possessed by Actress Tahiya Zarrouq through which she managed to overcome what is impossible in the Sudanese culture and tradition, being a woman, a citizen and an actress.

It was a venture for her, as a Sudanese woman, to appear on the stage and conduct the role in suggestive bodily expressions; it was a revolutionary, exceptional role for a Sudanese woman.

Tahiya Zarroug excelled her forerunner actresses in the television and theatre drama by continuing incessantly throughout the period from her start until her migration to Canada and by the different roles she played as regards the in-depth and variation of those roles.


We write about Tahiya Zarroug who told us by her body and soul, defended our values, our past, our present and our future. And before that, she defended the Sudanese women.

In Tahiya’s life story we find Sali in the play: Napata Habibati (Napata, My Love), that girl who spoke wisdom, stood up to myths and foretold a new human reality. We also find the girl whose honor was stolen, who at the same time endures the absence of her father. Salma, the lost, who runs away from herself, who smokes, who boozes but keeps within herself a vigilant, a wakeful conscience and a desire in a clean life.

In Tahiya’s story we see the Dahabaya in the famous radio serial where love battles obsolete traditions, traditions built on ethnic differences, differences between the town and the village and where the Centre has privilege over the periphery.

In her biography we find fiancé Suhair, in “khotobat Suhair”, the educated girl, member of the Sudanese Women Union who suffers from an addicted father and a boastful flat mother (the struggle between new and old values), a girl who lays the groundwork for girls’ freedom to choose their future husbands, the struggle between what is old and what is new.

In her story we see the TV serials: Al-Dallaliyya (the broker), al-Mal Wal Hub (money and love) and we see the character of Sittana in Buyoot Min Nar (homes from fire), the girl who sacrifices her youth in order to raise and educate her younger brother and then descends into a complex, an obsession that she would lose her brother.

In Tahiya’s biography we find the play: The Lion and the Jewel by Wily Soyinka and the character of Sidi, that girl who defends traditions and questions the meaning of progress. In Tahiyya’s book we see the film: The Wedding of Zein ... And in her book we see much more..much more.

Hailing from an Omdurman family with some of its members practicing politics and arts, Tahiya Zarroug has consolidated the initiative of her predecessors and amply contributed to bestowing legitimacy for a Sudanese woman as an actress and for this end, she made many sacrifices.

We write about Tahiya Zarroug who lived away from home for long years and who upon her return in 2013 celebrated with her mates her dream of the Sudanese drama; we write about her in acknowledgement and recognition of her achievements. In her passionate tears for returning home and the warm welcome by the Friendship Hall audience, the previous injustice by some comrades is dispelled.

We write about Tahiya Zarroug in solidarity with all of our innovators who have reshaped the affection of our people and who have protected it against calamities and against those who sought, and are still seeking, to establish inferiority, spiritual poverty and hideous culture.

We write about Tahiya Zarroug because she related to us with her body and soul and because she defended our values, our past, our present time and our future and, above all, because she defended the Sudanese woman.

The appearance of Tahiya Zarroug on the stage has earned recognition of the Sudanese woman as an actress while her predecessors suffered from appearing on the stage.

Tahiya Zarroug considered acting as a basic issue while many of her forerunners took acting as a hobby rather than a profession.

Her name was linked with central and very important works of the Sudanese theatre as well as the dramatic works on the radio. We find in her record numerous accomplishments, including Urs Al-Zein film.

Tahiya Zarroug is a national wealth which we have forsaken and her absence has left a tremendous vacuum in acting by the Sudanese woman.




Sudanow is the longest serving English speaking magazine in the Sudan. It is chartarized by its high quality professional journalism, focusing on political, social, economic, cultural and sport developments in the Sudan. Sudanow provides in depth analysis of these developments by academia, highly ...


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