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Why I ventured into Islamic gospel – Farida Jalal

There are so many that I cannot put an exact number to. I have a lot of songs praising..

Farida Jalal is a known name in Kannywood. She has been off the movie radar for some time as she ventured into Islamic songs. In this interview the actress talks about life as an actress among other issues.


You have been off the movie radar, where have you been?

It is true, I have been away from acting, but not away from the entertainment industry. For quite some time now I have not been engaged in anything that has to do with acting in Kannywood, this is to say I no longer feature in films as I used to. If I may say this, you can refer to me as a former actress and you can be right.

What are you doing presently?

Ever since I left Kannywood, I have ventured into Islamic songs. This has been my wish for quite a long time and I am sure you must have seen or heard one of my songs. Islamic songs are what I do for now and it is what I will be doing till eternity.

How many gospel songs do you have presently?

There are so many that I cannot put an exact number to. I have a lot of songs praising Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and his daughter Fatima. In fact, many of my songs out there are enjoying great popularity, while I work on others as well.

Do you have an album?

Well, for now I don’t but I plan to have an album of my own soon. I hope to have a grand event launching it when it is ready.

Do you get invitations to sing during events?

Yes, I do. I entertain people during events when I get invites.  I and other Islamic singers meet to stage a concert and entertain people.

Who writes your songs or are they original?

I personally write some while some of my songs were written by others. This is common with songwriting, you write some and others write for you. It is a symbiotic thing that you can write for others and others can equally write for you.

What’s your current marital status?

I was married twice and the marriages didn’t work out well for me, therefore my current marital status is, I am single. My prayer is to get a good husband in the future who will love me for who I am and not for what I am.

After spending 7 years in Kannywood I got married to a lecturer in 2008 and the marriage crashed after 9 years. I came back to the industry and  after some years, I remarried again, that also didn’t work according to plan as it also crashed.

How would you describe the Kannywood of today?

Actually, I can’t say anything on the present Kannywood since I am no longer a practicing actress. However, the industry is  what brought me to limelight and as such I will always wish those practicing today the best that the business can offer them. That is all I can say for now.

What is that one thing that you will never forget as an actress?

There are many unforgettable incidents in my life as a Kannywood actress, but the one I will never forget is that it was due to the Kannywood film industry that I got my first opportunity to perform Hajj. This will forever remain the most memorable moment in my life as an actress.

Can you tell us a little about your acting life?

Why not, I was born and raised in Katsina state. I completed my primary and secondary schools all in Katsina state. However, I later relocated to Kano state where I joined the Hausa film making industry known as Kannywood.

I was lucky to hit stardom within a short period of joining the film making industry. I became a household name within a short period, but not without challenges here and there.

How would you describe yourself as an actress then?

I think this question ought to be directed to my fans and not me. However, I can answer it based on what I heard from my fans. They kept telling me that I made their day by a role I once played in one of the movies.

When I joined the film making industry in early 2000, I was regarded as one of the few talented Kannywood actresses from the northern part of Nigeria. I know during our time I contributed a lot to the development of the industry. I have attracted millions of audience to myself and to the industry. I was lucky to be in the list of few actresses that have featured in the industry’s biggest movies of the early years of the industry, such as ‘Yakana’ and ‘Sansani’.

Can you remember some of your films while in active acting?

I have featured in as many films as I can remember some of which I have forgotten their names already. However, the few I can remember are Sansani, Yakana, Raga, Jan Kunne, Farashi, Dan Zaki, Lugga, Tutarso, Namshaza, Gidauniya, Kumbo and many others.

Do we see you returning to Kanywood soon?

This is something I can’t make any comment on for now. As I have said earlier, I have given my share of positive contribution to the development of the industry as an actress and I am not in a position to determine what tomorrow may look like. Therefore, returning or not returning should be something that only time will tell and not me.

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