Memoirs of an Arabian Princess from Zanzibar

The Princess is herself a woman of high culture, and the story of her life is as instructive as history and as fascinating as fiction.” -Oscar Wilde

Born Salamah bint Said, Princess of Zanzibar, in 1844, Emily Reute grew up in a harem with scores of siblings. The royal family maintained it's fabulous wealth and luxury with a robust traffic in ivory, spices and human bondage. The Princess would venture beyond the palace, into the city and plantations where European traders, missionaries, and colonists exercised a growing influence.  There she met Rudolph Reute, a German trader,with whom she eloped to Germany. The Princess also converted to Christianity and took the name Emily.


While living in Germany, she attained the perspective to form a comparison of the lives of women in Muslim society with those of their European contemporaries. Originally published in 1886, Waterfall Productions, has adapted this remarkable autobiography for a theatrical presentation, where the audience will meet Princess Salamah and learn about her life in both Zanzibar and Germany as a royal, daughter, outcast,  wife, widow and mother.

Duration: 70 minutes with an optional talk-back afterwards. Ages 12 and up


Appropriate for:

  • March-Women's History Month
  • Women's Groups or events
  • Libraries
  • Colleges
  • Book Clubs
  • Students of Arabic, Islam, women studies
  • Those interested in Zanzibar & East Africa History


"Many thanks for bringing the Arabian princess to our's a wonderful piece in addition to being so very timely. We were transported into a world of wonders and stirring human drama." 


-Marc Clopton

Artistic Director

Actors Studio of Newburyport MA


"I am very happy and grateful for your efforts to portray the life and memoirs of my grand aunt, The Princess of Oman and Zanzibar Sayyida Salamah bint Said bin Sultan Al Busaid later Frau Emily Reute...I wish you every success in bringing my grand aunt to the stage.


-Hamoud K Al Said

Great grandson of Sultan Ali bin Said of Zanzibar, the elder brother of  Princess Salamah