Private Project

Nourhane, a child's dream

Nourhane was a singer and actress in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s.
She put a sudden end to her career and retreated away from the stage in the mid-60s.
From that point on, she never spoke about her past, nor did she sing.
Her grand-daughter goes into the world of filmmaking and at the age of 21 discovers her grandmother's past. From that point on, she is on a quest to find out as much as possible about her grandmother's career and life, and particularly about why her grandmother left a career at its height.
Layers and layers of stories emerge through interviews, voice-overs, drawings, and animated sequences in a film centered around passion, and love.

  • May Kassem
  • May Kassem
  • May Kassem
  • Kheirieh Jarkas, Nashaat Sanadiki
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Documentary, Experimental, Feature
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 12 minutes 30 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    January 1, 2016
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
    DV, 720p
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director Biography - May Kassem

Born in Beirut in 1975, May Kassem is a filmmaker, screenwriter and teacher, who has made short 16mm films, videos, documentaries, and animated films.
Her work has focused on the impact of art on society (Organized Freedom is Compulsory – 1994 / Pre-revolutionary art is the Art of the Revolution - 1996), as well as the marginalization of segments of urban populations such as migrant Syrian construction workers in Lebanon (Joker -1998), and the plight of undocumented immigrants in Paris (Qui écrira l'histoire – 1996).
She has been working on a feature-length documentary, which includes animated sequences, about legendary actress and singer Nourhane who, after a successful career in the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, suddenly quit the stage, and who is also May's grandmother.
May presents two music programs on 96.2 FM Radio Liban « Poivre Noir, Piment Rouge » as well as « Champ Sonore ».

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

I have been thinking about this film ever since I found out, at the age of 21, that my grandmother had been a singer and an actress. My grandmother and I have been shooting and making drawings for this film ever since 2008. This is a very personal film told with two voices and four hands.