Finnish pop singer Yona graced multiple stages in Addis this week. Yona performed at Villa Verde, FendikaCultural Center and a finale show at Alliance Ethio-Françaisethroughout the week.
The performance at the vibrant and eclectic Fendika induced many who had not attended to join the final performance at Alliance.
Set against the beautifully designed background of the alliance compound, Yona performed many hit songs. Playful melodies that spoke of love, the coming of spring and the joys of riding a bicycle graced the evening as the moon slowly rose behind the building and mild wind blew across the grounds. The talented band serenaded the intimately gathered audience.
Her energetic stage performance and ability to connect to a crowd was evident as the audience sang along.
Students from the Yared School of Music, Addis Ababa University, joined Yona on stage. 2 violinists, 2 cellists, 2 drummers, 2 percussionists and 2 saxophonists from Yared School joined the band’s performances.
Influenced by pop, reggae and hip-hop, Yona also performed songs from her seventh and newest album 7 and showed she was the trailblazing female rapper in Finland.
This musical visit was organized by the Embassy of Finland in conjunction with the 101-year anniversary of the liberation of Finland.
She and her band had conducted weeklong workshops at various music schools in the city including Yared, MekaneYesus and Jazz Amba.
Yona had performed a similar workshop in Addis Ababa the previous year and held performances along with a Finnish jazz trio.