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Ifi Ude

Varsovians: Ifi Ude

Her new song “Love is Stronger” has just seen a daylight. It has been five years since the release of her debut album “Ifi Ude”. However, it doesn’t mean she was wasting her time. She has published a book for children entitled “Zebra”, gave birth to a baby boy, took part in a movie by Jerzy Skolimowski “11 minutes” and a play “Crazy God” by Grzegorz Bral.

Her new single was released as a part of the “New Moons” collection published by a renowned Killing Moon – an independent record label from London which is known for discovering new talents. This year will belong to her. 

In “Love Is Stronger” you sing in a tribal language Igbo words which mean ” I want you to be happy”. Who is the addressee of these words?
– Probably many of the listeners will think about my son. Especially that I describe the moment of birth, origins of matter, the beginning. But it has some broader context.

We are surrounded by negative energy, divisions, that a safety issue which I sing about seems to be paramount. Am I strong enough to trust? I try to inspire people to conquer their weaknesses. If we are strong and stick together everything around which tries to destroy us fails. We shall not let be divided.

Racism is rampant today in Poland. Have you ever experienced it in Poland?
– No, I was lucky. No one wanted to hurt me. But I am aware of the problem and I engage in various initiatives which fight against racism, bias, promote multiculturalism. Thus I agreed to Mamadou Diuf’s offer to sing some Warsaw covers like “Nie masz cwaniaka nad Warszawiaka”. I also wrote a book for children about tolerance and how important it is for others. I also run workshops in kindergartens and schools.

“Zebra” has its fans. I know parents who quote some of the parts because they have read the book to their children so many times that they know it by heart. Did you write it after giving birth to your son?
– No, he wasn’t even on my mind then. My friend, a publisher, invited authors who live in Poland but have roots in different places in the world to participate in this project.

Do you remember something from your first three years in Nigeria?
– My memories are very sensual. I recollect patterns on the carpet, scents, tastes. I was carried in a scarf until I was 3 years old. I think it had an influence on who I am today. 

And do you remember arrival to Poland?
– Yes, I do. It was autumn. I was tired of a long journey, I fell asleep on a couch. The first thing I said after waking up was: “I want to go home”. Just like E.T. Now it is my home, especially Warsaw where I have been living for 15 years now. I love this city. 

Photo: Aga Bilska 

Ifi Ude
Ifi Ude
Ifi Ude
Ifi Ude

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