Skirball Center for the Performing Arts - New York University

With a warm and luminous voice tinted with hints of jazz, folk, and East African traditions, Meklit Hadero takes center stage with some of her musical friends in her New York University debut.


“Meklit is an artistic giant in the early stages. She sings of fragility, hope and self-empowerment, and exudes all three. What’s irresistible, above all, is her cradling, sensuous, gentle sound. She is stunning.” -San Francisco Chronicle

Meklit Hadero is part of the Institute of African American Affairs' spring 2011 artist-in-residence program, The African Diaspora And/In the World. This concert is part of a series of programs the Institute is hosting at New York University.

Meklit Hadero’s music is imbued with poetry and multiplicity, from hybridized sounds of Tizita (haunting and nostalgic music) drawing from her Ethiopian heritage, to the annals of folk songs and rock & roll. If Joni Mitchell were East African and met Nina Simone for tea in San Francisco’s Mission District, she might end up sounding like Meklit Hadero. Hadero aptly describes her music as emanating from “in-between-spaces.” Listening to Meklit Hadero transports us to the post-national space of Africa and America; inspiring us to bridge the frontiers between language, tribes and disciplines. Her songs celebrate the newness of life and the hyphens that bring us together. She understands the rich community-building possibilities of this moment in history, when technological advances make intercultural exchange the norm rather than the exception. She founded the Arba Minch Collective to foster cultural exchange between the Ethiopian Diaspora and Ethiopians living in Ethiopia; she is a 2009 TED Global Fellow; and a resident artist at the Red Poppy Art House in San Francisco. Hadero is both songwriter and composer, equally inhabiting both the recording/touring world, as well as the world of the arts and culture. In 2007, she self-released her first EP, titled Eight Songs... Currently she is signed to Porto Franco Records, and her latest studio album, On A Day Like This… was released in 2010.

Co-presented by the Institute of African-American Affairs.