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Maya Azucena: US R&B singer, activist who took Dar by storm

This is the Brooklyn, New York native’s second leg to Tanzania and this time around with the aim to spread a message of women’s empowerment and to share her powerful new album which touches on social justice themes like hope and love.Driven by entrepreneural spirit, she has released her own music albums and toured the planet. And she considers herself “a humanitarian who consistently uses her talent to help make life better for those around her”.

She arrived in Arusha the third week of February and performed there for a few days, before she proceeded to Dar es Salaam where she expressed her appreciation over significant progress made so far in awareness creation and reduction of domestic violence and abuse in the country.

“I was here last year and held several sensitization dialogues where people especially youths came out confidently and told stories of their lives in Arusha and Dar es Salaam. A year letter I see things changing very rapidly for the better,” she said. While in Arusha, Ms Azucena talked to kids at a children’s home and students at a community based education centre. She also gave a dynamic performance at a benefit concert for domestic violence advocacy.

According to her, all that the society needs is to be given an opportunity for them to feel comfortable and protected, the situation which will promote freedom of speech through which people will tell their stories over domestic violence that will help others change.

“Most of us are victims of domestic violence, I used to be in an abusive relationship but I came out of it and now I am free. Through my music I am trying to compose songs that will help others know that there is a safe place for those who are being mistreated,” she said.

Ms Azucena called on local artists to learn how to be creative and sing songs that will send a strong message to people by selecting topics that addresses critical challenges facing societies.She believes that “music is a tool for healing and activism” and thus if well composed and presented it can change people’s definition of who they are and how they should interact with others.

She noted that during her visit last year she did a song for the United Nations’ Population Fund (UNFPA) in collaboration with some local and Kenyan artistes titled-‘Mama Creator’, that advocated for safe motherhood.“My desire is to inspire my audience, I want to affect people in a way that will make them stand firm to change their own lives, I am happy with what I am doing and I enjoy it,” she said.

Ms Azucena second leg tour was sponsored by Global Strategy Partners and Megamark Entertainment in collaboration with the US Embassy in Dar.On Saturday night, the singer took the city of Dar es Salaam by storm when she demonstrated her electric performer with commanding stage presence and passionate delivery to her fans that converged at the National Museum Theatre.

A thrilling performance showed vividly that the singer was really an award winning, a vocalist so richly talented that she could make fans stand up and dance to the tune with most  of her songs filled with messages advocating for peace and love for the whole humanity.

“I love Tanzania and I am so glad to be here once again speaking about important issues and singing songs from my new album-Cry love” she said.In her live performance, Ms Azucena was backed by a local upcoming artist, Yvonne Mwale and Arusha’s legendary Ms Charlotte O'Neal a.k.a Mama C. 

Mama C who is also the Founder of the United African American Community Center (UAACC) based in Arusha pointed out that Ms Azucena’s mission has been of great impact to communities in Arusha.“She has inspired ordinary people in Arusha and it is clearly seen that the life of people there has changed and domestic violence is on the decline and most artists in the city are singing awakening songs,” she said.

Mr Chedi Ngulu who was the spokesman for the event organizers said “we are excited to host this event and bring some much needed flavor to the Dar entertainment scene and we are proud to have Maya who has such a powerful social message”.

ABRAHAM John (23), a second year student at ...

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Author: ABDULWAKIL SAIBOKO

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