Stephanie Atala, the voice of hope

Stephanie Atala, the voice of hope
A free spirit soaring high

July/August 2020

Photos by Patricia Nawar
Styled by Hanane Tabet
Makeup by Haifa Amin for Fady Kataya
Hair by Pace e luce

Pleated organza with origami embroideries bustier gown, Georges Chakra Couture SS20.


She is one of Lebanon’s most promising talents. With her beautiful energy, her dazzling looks and an inspiring humbleness, she will surely conquer the acting scene very soon. The world definitely belongs to her.


On Berbara’s rocky beach, we met Stephanie Atala. The young actress looked like a goddess of antiquity with these Couture dresses blending perfectly with the Greco-Phoenician background recalling Lebanon’s majestic origins steeped in history. However, her dazzling laugh will remind you immediately of the present. If Lebanon’s present is getting as dark as ever, Stephanie Atala’s youth and dynamism will make you feel that the future can only be a bearer of hope.

She embodies Lebanese youth and she belongs to it. A youth who wants to break obstacles, a youth filled with talent and determination.

The 26-year-old trilingual singer and actress has succeeded in making a place for her on local, regional and soon on the international scene.



Why did you choose to be an actress and where does this passion come from?

I’ve always had something for this kind of art, since childhood, and my parents are also passionate about movies. As a little girl, I used to go to the movies with my father, and never missed a TV series. However, my shyness couldn’t let me imagine myself being in front of the cameras. This is why I decided to study art direction. But destiny had different plans for me; The theatre class, which was included in my university courses, allowed me to come out of my cocoon of shyness and discover my talent. Little by little, I was contacted to shoot commercials and short films, this shell of shyness was broken and my passion was set free.



The Breezy Celestial printed silk-chiffon gown, Camille Chamoun Couture
18 karat gold plated earrings, Sophia Beirut. Yellow gold rings, Ralph Masri.



The project that marks your debut

I will never forget the day when director and actor Georges Khabbaz contacted me for his play BilKawalis; it was my senior year at university and my career took a decisive turn by obtaining the main role in this play. The same year, I played a role in the TV series “Ward Jouri”.


Comedy or drama?

Although most of the projects I took part in so far were drama ones, comedy has and will always have a special place in my heart. I love making people laugh, especially during these hard times, but I am still waiting to receive a script that is both funny and classy.


A role that is important to you.

Lina’s character in the psychological thriller Farah, filmed in Lebanon and co-directed by HassibaFreiha and Kenton Oxley. The film is currently in post-production in London, and the trailer will be revealed in a few weeks. I went beyond the limits as an actress for this, which is a really intense and complicated character, who sends a strong message to the women of our region, without trying to break the taboos of our society.





Tulle and silk crepe de chine gown, Marwan & Khaled Couture.
Modernist rose gold and sapphires earrings, Ralph Masri. 18 Karat yellow gold ring, Ralph Masri.


A dream?

A musical; I love singing and dancing, and it would be my dream to star in a movie that combines both with my passion as an actress. I was recently contacted for a project like this and my fingers are crossed!


Any regrets?

I believe in one of Oscar Wilde’s quote that says, “Better have remorse than regrets.”I know I make a lot of mistakes, like anyone of my age, but making mistakes is being human and helps us grow. I don’t know if you can call this “regret” but I wish I had the opportunity to attend as a child a school dedicated to acting and singing, like the ones we see in the USA and Europe. These schools forge talents since childhood.


The Lebanon you dream of?

It may sound weird, but I dream of Lebanon of my childhood. It was far from perfect but it was beautiful in my eyes. Most of my friends have left and I am aware of how serious the problems are here and of this historical crisis that my country is going through. However, I chose to stay for now, and although I hold the French citizenship as well, I still have hold on to some optimism. I flee Beirut to go discover our beautiful and authentic villages with their incomparable conviviality.


Emigrate or stay?

A year ago, I would have said “stay” without hesitation. But now, with all of what is going on here, it is difficult to give an answer. As a young woman and artist, I have big plans and dreams, both professionally and personally, and I wonder if I could really accomplish at least a few in Lebanon. I am torn between the love for my country and the more realistic look I have for it.


Life with and after Covid-19?

I realized how fragile we are as human beings, but I learned a great lesson in love and gratitude during lockdown after spending those long weeks with my family.


Your vision of fashion and beauty?

For me, fashion and beauty go hand in hand with individualism and originality. I don’t like the idea that we all have to look alike, and I love designers who express themselves freely, far from the traditional codes. Rather than following the trends, I prefer to choose what suits me, what is comfortable and what matches my personality.



Silk-chiffon gown, Dany Atrache Couture
Modernist rose gold and sapphires necklace and earrings, Ralph Masri.



Tulle, lace and leather-trimmed gown, Camille Chamoun Couture
18 karat gold plated earrings, Sophia Beirut.



Very much! And impatient. I often defend my cause as a woman without taking into consideration the fact that I live in a society where women’s rights still have a long way to go.


A director you want to work with?

Nadine Labaki without any hesitation. She inspires me a lot as a director, but also as a mother and a committed woman.


Your qualities?

My perseverance and my ability to control my impatience to achieve my goal.


A Flaw?

I always see the bright side in other people, and have often been disappointed.


Your projects?

I look forward to Farah movie release, and next fall, a TV series, in which I am starring, will be shown on the Lebanese channel MTV. I’m also working on a duet with an international singer, but I can’t tell you more because of the confidentiality agreement I signed.

On a personal level, I would love to travel, to go somewhere in Italy, but I don’t know if that is going to be possible with the global pandemic and the economic crisis that Lebanon is going through.