CIIS Public Programs & Performances and Amoeba Music present Grammy Award–winning Beninoise singer-songwriter Angelique Kidjo on Saturday, June 21st at the Nourse Theater in San Francisco.
Born in the West African country of Benin and raised in the busy port city of Cotonou, Angelique Kidjo was surrounded by a multi-hued world of music, dance, and art - from the rich sounds, rhythms, and story telling of traditional Beninese culture to the far-ranging fascinations of international pop, rock, blues, Latin music and jazz. Add to that the blessing of parents who honored creativity and supported Angelique's artistic goals unconditionally, encouraging her to give free rein to the talents she began to reveal as a six year old.
Expressing those talents to the fullest, she became a highly visible international artist while she was still in her 20s. Throughout the ‘90s and beyond, she has performed globally, winning honor after honor, including a Grammy, while using her visibility to campaign for women's rights, provide educational opportunities for girls, and support environmental initiatives.
On Eve, her Savoy Records debut named for her own mother as well as the mythical "mother of all living," Angelique Kidjo builds on her evolving legacy with a 13-track, three interlude set of melodically rich, rhythmically powerful expressions of female empowerment. These songs become all the more intimate and emotionally urgent with Kidjo's dynamic collaborations with traditional women's choirs from Kenya and various cities and villages in Benin. The singer and her newfound native vocalists sing in a wide array of native Beninese languages, including Fon (Kidjo's first language), Yoruba, Goun, and Mina.