Thursday, September 01, 2005

The other side of me : Where it all started

I have been meaning to write this post for a while, but I have been quite lazy in scanning some pictures that would serve as an addition to this post.

Many of you who have gotten to know me recently through my writings on this blog, know me as an editor. The back story of how I became an editor is what many may not know.

For the longest time my dream was to enter the army, the Royal Guards in particular, everyone knew that I was going to end up leading the security detail of the King one day. I planned to go to WestPoint Military academy, one of the most prestigious in the world and I would have had to serve for 16 years in the Jordanian army. This was my dream, this was what I only saw.

Well the saying in Arabic goes, t'aty al-riah bima la tashtahi al sufun ( the winds come contrary to the wishes of the ships) and things didn't work out as planned. My scholarship to WestPoint was gone. Gladly i had always had a plan B, and that was to get into acting or something related to media or film. That's what happened, and today I can say that i am a professional editor.

As for the acting part, that was where my creative output started. Since I was about 5 I would perform imitations of family members and I would entertain all our guests. As soon as I started school, I was in a play after another, playing many various roles over the years. I became known for my comedy, and in particular my skills in impersonations.

The list of the people I impersonated started with the late king Hussein, which I studies for about a year, listening to many of his speeches, observing the way he interacted with people in different situations, it was a detailed study that no one knew about except my cousin who helped me out and critiqued me. One day, I did it in front of my parents and they were blown away. I knew I had it down when I had both Prince Hashem and Princess Iman acknowledge the fact that I sounded like the late King Hussein.

TV presenter Omar Al-Khateeb, George Wassouf, Mu'amar al Gaddafi, Saddam Hussein, Abu Baker Salem, Nabil Shuail, Yasser Arafat and Prince Hassan , where all some of the voices i did. The list goes on to include many of my own hybrid characters such as Abu Sinno, and others.

I got my first professional acting gig with Nabil Sawalha in 2 plays, and since then I have been waiting for my next chance, which if all goes well could be sometime in the first quarter of next year, Inshallah.

I also want to say that there are people I need to thank who have helped me develop as an actor over the years, starting with Miss Hala Khoury, Ustaz Saad Abbas ( Nu3man from Ifta7 ya SimSim) Mrs. Lee Sibley, Nabil Sawalha, Abu Madda7, my good friend and acting collegue Jamil Zraikat, and of course the parents.

Here are some pics of my impersonations.

From Left to Right:
Row 1: Late king Hussein ( i was in 9th grade, no comments) Saddam Hussein, Omar Al-Khateeb , Yasser Arafat

Row 2: George Wassouf, Ustath Al-Riyada Imad Zaza, Alife Doolitle ( from My Fair Lady) and Faraj ( the hariseh seller) from the old Tv show Al-3ilmo Nooron


Blogger jameed said...

Ra7at 3aleik...kan hassa3 3indak kart m2sasseh 3askariyeh w ta2meen bil madeeneh, ya3ni ishi ishi!

isma3..inta bas jarribni combars! 7amilni klakeit!

9:44 AM  
Blogger Lina said...

think what a loss it would've been to the future of Jordanian media if you went into the special forces ;)

great pics! next time you're here bidna ni3mallak gathering and be live witness to these talents :)

10:20 AM  
Blogger Roba said...

I totally agree with Lina, it would have been a total loss. I'm really glad you ended up doing something creative, it's just so inspiring to see young Jordanians who are doing something they enjoy.
The pictures are priceless by the way :)

3:23 PM  
Blogger Linda said...

man laith you were serious when you mentioned all those people you can imitate.

you look like a diva in the last picture to the right. hehehe. yalla hopefully one day we can see these talents live or on a big screen or something. but i bet my performance as george washington in the 5th grade beats these ;)

8:53 PM  
Blogger Amin Matalqa said...

I'll testify. You're one funny Bataranzi, and great with your impressions. Bahlwanaji walak Abantaji.

8:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

why the fuck would you want to be a security guard man?? ambition??

9:45 PM  
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3:08 PM  

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