Angelique Kidjo is a Fascinating African Committed to Excellence who continues to use her love of music to inspire change in Africa. A very proud African, kidjo has become Africa’s most internationally celebrated musician of her time and has won numerous awards including a Grammy Award and an NAACP Image Award for outstanding world music.Born in Benin, Angelique Kidjo grew up listening to Beninoise traditional music with influences from legends such as Miriam Makeba, Aretha Franklin, Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana, and more. At a very early age, Kidjo, being a natural talent, developed an interest and passion for music while performing with her mother’s theater troupe. She grew up in a home where education was enforced, and as a result, was exposed to many different cultures and languages, encouraging her to learn the importance of tolerance as a young child. Angelique Kidjo credits the person she is today to her upbringing and is forever grateful to her parents for providing her with a home that so greatly enriched the quality of her life.The Diva went on to study music in Paris and released successful albums right after the other. She became very well known all across Africa with hits such as Agolo, Wombo Lombo, and her version of Malaika. She became more acclaimed in the international market when she signed a deal with Island Records in 1991 and later on with Columbia Records in 2000. She has worked with Alicia Keys, Carlos Santana, Joss Stone, Peter Gabriel, and Josh Groban among many others.Filled with passion for the continent of Africa, Ms Kidjo is the UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador to Africa and also founded the Batonga Foundation, which is an organization whose goal is to provide an education to young girls in Africa.
The BBC African Service recently included Angelique Kidjo on a list of Africa’s most iconic figures as well as the distinction by <em>Time Magazine </em>as “Africa’s Premier Diva.”