Published on 23 Feb 2012 | over 4 years ago
Zia Mohyeddin (born June 20, 1933) is a Pakistani actor famed for his voice.
He was born in Faisalabad, (formerly Lyallpur), British India in a Urdu Speaking Family. He passed his early life in Karachi. He was trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts in London from 1953-1956. After stage roles in Long Day's Journey Into Night and Julius Caesar, he made his West End debut in A Passage to India in 1960. He made his film debut in Lawrence of Arabia in 1963, playing the role of Tafas (the Arab guide who is shot by Omar Sharif for drinking water from the wrong well). He then made numerous TV and film appearances, and starred as Dr Aziz in the 1965 BBC television version of A Passage to India.
He returned to Pakistan in the late 1960s. There he founded and ran the PIA Arts and Dance Academy, and hosted his own TV talk show. Around this time he met and subsequently (in 1973) married the classical dancer Naheed Siddiqui. However after difficulties with the regime Mohyeddin returned to England in the late 1970s, shortly followed by his wife. During the 1980s Zia worked in Birmingham, Great Britain, where he produced Central Television's flagship multicultural programme Here and Now.
He resumed his acting career in Europe, appearing in small roles in various films and television programs. He has since traveled the world giving Urdu poetry and prose recitations. In the late 1990s, Zia remarried, and had a daughter with his wife, Azra. In February 2005 President Pervez Musharraf invited Mohyeddin to act as Chairman of the new National Academy of Performing Arts in Karachi.
To this date, despite his growing age, Zia is still active among Pakistani media as a speaker and hosts several TV programs both for National and Private Channels. He is also involved in narrating some abstract short films and commercials