Syrian born Prince Farid El Atrash is the son of Prince Fahd El Atrash from Jabal El Arab in Sweida, Syria. Farid’s mother, a Lebanese, was Alia Al Munther. She ran away with her three children, Fouad, the eldest, Farid the middle boy, and Amal, the young girl who later became Asmahan.
Farid’s first song was Ya Hub Min Gheir Amal (Love Without Hope). The song put him in the public eye and he never looked back. However, it was his second song, Ya Raitny Teer La Teer Hawalaiki (I Wish I Could Fly to Fly Around You), which made him a household name. The song actually made him the number two singer in the Arab world, proceeded only by Mohammad Abdul Wahab in 1940.
Along with his sister Asmahan, Farid performed his first musical movie, Intisar El Shabab (Vicotry of Youth), in 1941.
The movie marked a turning point in Farid’s career because the singer/actor found himself as a producer. Following Victory of Youth, Farid appeared and produced various movies including Bulbul Afandi (Sir Bulbul) alongside Sabah, Matulush Li Had (Don’t Tell Anyone) and Aiza Atghawaz (I Want to Get Married), with Nour El Hudah.
On the personal level, Farid was linked to dancer Samia Jamal, who had also starred in some of his movies. The relationship was a serious one that could have led to marriage. However, since his family, who were still attached to royalty, did not allow the young singer to go through with the marriage.
Farid’s last film was Naghm Fi Hayati (A Tune in my Life), also starring Mirvat Amin and Hussein Fahmi.
Throughout his career, Farid composed all his songs; however, he was generous in composing for others. His benefactors included Warda.
Meanwhile, the actor was never able to fulfill his dream of composing for the legendary Um Kulthum.
Farid’s most famous songs are Awil Hamsa (The First Whisper), Al Rabieh (Spring) and Lahn El Khulud (Eternal Tune).
Farid never married, however, it was speculated that a relationship he was having with a Lebanese socialite was going to lead to marriage.
Farid was also a compulsive gambler.
At the time of his death, his fortune was estimated at half a million Egyptian pounds.
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com )