Portrait of the day: May Skaf

May Skaf was a Syrian actress and activist. She acted in many series and movies. She died in France from a heart attack.

News Center - Syrian actress and activist May Skaf was born on April 13, 1969, to a Christian family in Damascus. She studied French literature at Damascus University. When she was a university student, she performed in many theatre plays at the French Cultural Center with her university friends.  She began her career in 1991 and acted in many series and movies. In 2001, she participated in the Syrian artists association. In 2004, she founded the Institute for Performing Arts.

She was threatened to cut off her tongue

May Skaf was known for her opposition to the Syrian regime and she was labeled “The rebellious artist”, “The Free artist” and “Revolution icon”. When the Declaration of Damascus was signed in 2005, she received threats from the Syrian government saying, “We will cut off your tongue”. She was arrested during a peaceful protest participated by many intellectuals in Damascus. She was released after several days.

She had to leave Syria

In 2012, May Skaf left Syria secretly for Lebanon and then to Jordan, where she immigrated to France with her son in 2013. In 2017, she returned to the world of cinema through a short film filmed in the French capital, Paris, entitled "Mirage." She played the role of "Rima Marchelian", a Syrian woman who immigrated to France during the years of the Syrian revolution, and in the midst of the recent French elections, she dreams of becoming the first woman to rule a country.

She died on July 23, 2018, in Paris from a heart attack at the age of 49.