Inside the Middle East
May 18, 2012
Posted: 1147 GMT

File picture dated August 21, 2008 shows Warda Al-Jazayriah, one of the Arab world's most famous Divas, during her memorable performance on the steps of the Bacchus Temple in the Roman Acropolis of Baalbek in Lebanon's eastern Bekaa Valley. PHOTO: AFP/Getty Images

Fans around the Arab world are mourning the death of Algerian diva Warda, known for her powerful voice, patriotic songs and cinematic roles. She died of cardiac arrest at her Cairo home at age 72.

Born in France in 1940 to an Algerian father and Lebanese mother, she started singing at age 11 and moved to her native country after it gained independence in the 60s. She married there and quit singing for ten years, reportedly because her husband banned her from performing, but returned to the limelight when then-president Boumedienne asked her to perform to commemorate Algerian independence day.

Warda worked with some of the most iconic Arab musicians including composer and singer Mohammed Abdelwahab and composer Baligh Hamdy who she eventually married. She and Hamdy collaborated on of her most famous songs  "Ismaouni" or "Listen to Me."

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Filed under: Algeria •Culture

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icons designs   October 8th, 2012 3:59 am ET

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