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MAISHA („life” in Swahili) blends traditional and modern sounds from Europe and Africa to deliver an unique fusion of crossover jazz, instrumental hip-hop and world beat. This Afro-European collective of 12 prominent artists was founded on the initiative of the EU Delegation to the African Union (AU) in 2019 in Addis-Ababa (Ethiopia). During a three-week artistic residency instrumentalists and vocalists with different backgrounds became musical partners unified by the common language of music. Meeting Mulatu Astatke, the father of Ethio Jazz or jamming with local musicians in Fendika Cultural Center formed the MAISHA’s sound significantly.

Debuting at the National Theatre in Addis-Ababa in May 2019, the ensemble also performed in Kigali Arena (Rwanda) and Brussels as part of the Europe-Africa Week and the 6th EU–AU Summit. This last concert took place in Bozar with guest appearance of Youssou N’Dour, a longtime advocate of cultural dialogue.

Maryll Abbas (France) – accordion
Haddis Alemayehu (Ethiopia) masinqo
Maurizio Congiu (Italy) – double-bass
Sébastien Giniaux (France) – guitars
Amine Kanzi (Morocco) – percussions
Tefo Mahola (South Africa) – drums
Nancy Nasibo Mutize (Zimbabwe) – vocals, mbira
Shabani Ramadhani (Tanzania) – e-bass
Fatime Songoro (Hungary/Tanzania) – alto sax
Chérif Soumano (Mali) – kora
Samuel Yirga (Ethiopia) – piano
Michał Żak (Poland) – flutes, clarinet, shawm, soprano sax