Hailed as the ‘Diva of the Sudanese desert’ (BBC World News) Sudanese-Italian singer Amira Kheir has been enchanting audiences around the world with a sound inspired by traditional music from her homeland Sudan and anchored in experimental Jazz and Soul. The result is a unique style of ‘Sudani-Jazz’ that gives tasters of Sudan’s rich musical heritage of distinctive Saharan blues, Nubian and Niloitic music whilst being reflective of the artist’s key Jazz and Soul influences, and expressing itself through improvisation and experimentation.
Described by Songlines as ‘bold and poetic… beautiful and fearless”, Amira’s music is a courageous statement through which all these influences come to life. Within this soudscape, East African rhythms blend with North African ambience, through hints of Afro-Latin grooves and Neo-Soul, expressing themselves through a soulful explosion of jazz improvisation. Amira’s music possesses within it ancient musical traditions, yet is delivered with a contemporary vibrancy reflective of London’s multicultural music scene.
Following the relsease of her debut album ‘View From Somewhere’ (2011 Contro Cultura Music/ Sterns African Music) and its critically acclaimed follow-up ‘Alsahraa’ (2014 Contro Cultura Music/ Sterns African Music) this accomplished vocalist has been steadily rising in the World music and Jazz circuits appearing on line and on air including in BBC 3′s ‘World on 3′, BBC World Service Network Africa, BBC Arabic and BBC Persia. She has performed internationally on some of the world’s biggest stages and festivals from the London Jazz Festival to the Festival Au Desert in Mali. 2013 saw Amira tour internationally with her Quartet as part of the ‘World Sessions’ Tour, as well as cross the bridge into film when she was commissioned to write and perform an improvisation based live score for Ernst Lubitch’s landmark silent film “Sumurun” as part of the 2013 Bird’s Eye View Film Festival celebrating women in film. 2014 saw her re-commissioned to perform “Sumurun” at the Barbican Centre in London, as well as headline Womad Charlton Park’s ‘BBC 3 Charlie Gillett stage’ and the London International Festival of Exploratoray Music (LIFEM) at King’s Place in London.
As a young singer, musician and composer, Amira draws from her own multicultural background to create music that explores themes of home, belonging, love, and unity. Her music is a spiritual journey, evocative of Northern Sudan’s desert landscape and celebrative of its ancient culture, but recognising of the world’s multitude realities and rooted in a desire to bring people together. She has been nominated as one of the “10 Amazing Jazz Artists from the Middle East and North Africa” by Mideast Tunes, and selected as one of “13 African Artists that will mark the next Decade” by Rede Angola. This young artist is rapidly establishing herself as an important voice in the landscape of African and Jazz music.