Gaitana (singer)

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For the 16th century South American resistance fighter, see Gaitana.
Gaita-Lurdes Essami
Gaitana.JPG
Background information
Birth name Gaita-Lurdes Essami
Also known as Gaitana
Born (1979-09-29) September 29, 1979 (age 35)
Kiev, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
Origin Ukraine
Genres Pop, dance-pop, R&B
Website gaitana.com

Gaita-Lurdes Essami (Ukrainian: Ґайта-Лурдес Ессамі), better known under stage name Gaitana (Ukrainian: Ґайтана), born on 29 September 1979 in Kiev), is a Ukrainian singer and songwriter of Ukrainian and Congolese descent.[1] Her music combines elements of jazz, funk, soul, and folk music. Gaitana represented Ukraine in the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Early life[edit]

Gaitana was born in Kiev, during the Ukrainian SSR, a member state of the Soviet Union (in present-day Ukraine), but subsequently moved to the Republic of the Congo where her father, Klaver Essami, was born. She lived there for five years. Afterwards, Gaitana moved back to Ukraine with her mother, but her father stayed in Brazzaville where he owns a transportation business.

Career[edit]

She sings in Ukrainian, English, Russian, but she also knows French and Lingala. Gaitana has a degree in economics from a lyceum of Economics. When she was younger Gaitana finished study at a music school where she played the saxophone. She composes all her own music and songs. She is the candidate for master of sport in table tennis. She has represented Ukraine at different competitions.[2] Gaitana performed at Ukrainians For Obama 2009 inauguration ball in Kiev in 2009.

Eurovision 2012[edit]

Gaitana was chosen to represent Ukraine in the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan with her song Be My Guest.[1] Gaitana became the first singer of Afro-Ukrainian origin to represent Ukraine in the contest. She qualified into the grand final finishing 8th in the second semi-final and ultimately finished in 15th place with 65 points.

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

  • 2003 - О тебе (Gaitana and Unity) - About You
  • 2005 - Слідом за тобою - Following You
  • 2007 - Капли дождя - Raindrops
  • 2008 - Kукaбaррa - Kukabarra
  • 2008 - Тайные желания - Secret Desires
  • 2010 - Только сегодня - Only Today
  • 2012 - Viva, Europe!

Singles[edit]

  • 2006 - "Двa вiкнa" - Two Windows
  • 2007 - "Шaленій" - Go Crazy
  • 2009 - "Нeщoдaвнo" (Gaitana and Stas Konkin) - Lately
  • 2012 - "Be My Guest"
  • 2013 - "Aliens"
  • 2014 - "Galaxy"

Awards[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Racist comments about Gaitana stir controversy, anger, Kyiv Post (24 February 2012)
  2. ^ Ukraine’s Eurovision Selection Marred by Right-Wing Racism, Time.com (9 February 2012)
  3. ^ Gaitana official biography

External links[edit]

Achievements
Preceded by
Mika Newton
with "Angel"
Ukraine in the Eurovision Song Contest
2012
Succeeded by
Zlata Ognevich
with "Gravity"