Helly Luv poses before performing for Queen Elizabeth II, June 21, 2014
November 16, 1988
|Residence||Los Angeles, California, United States|
Helan Abdulla (born November 16, 1988), better known by her stage name Helly Luv, is a Kurdish singer, dancer, choreographer, actress and model who was born in Urmia, Iran. Her career began by uploading cover videos on social media websites like Myspace and YouTube. Helly Luv has since starred in movies, music videos and has released her own material. Gaining popularity from her 2013 single "Risk It All", Helly Luv has recently signed to G2 Music Group. In 2014, she appeared in her first theatrical feature film, Mardan.
Helly Luv was born of Kurdish descent during the Persian Gulf War in the city of Urmia, Iran on November 16, 1988. Her family escaped the city of Dohuk in Iraqi Kurdistan by fleeing to Iran, where she was born, and suddenly to Turkey for safety. Eventually Helly Luv and her family's application was approved to become citizens of Finland, allowing her and her family to be one of the first Kurdish immigrants to live there. She took an interest in singing in a neighborhood choir and then expanded her interest by playing the piano, and taking drama classes. She began performing in school demonstrating her singing and dancing abilities. Dancing became her primary focus and afforded her an opportunity to compete in European dance championships and soon signed a contract with Finland's Nike Women.
In 2006, Helly Luv moved to Los Angeles, California, United States on her own to pursue her dream. Just before she started making arrangements to return to Finland, Helly Luv received a Myspace message from Grammy winning record producer Los Da Mystro to sign an artist deal with his production company. During this deal she had the opportunity to work with Grammy award winning singer-songwriter The-Dream. In winter 2013, Helly Luv signed a music deal with Gawain "G2" Bracy II and G2 Music Group. G2 Music Group released "Risk It All," the lively and inspirational leadoff single from Helly Luv's debut album. Produced almost entirely by Gawain "G2" Bracy II, the song synthesized Latin and Middle Eastern rhythms with world-pop songwriting. "Risk It All" received attention almost immediately in Finland, peaking all the way to the top three iTunes singles the first week and competing with Rihanna's "Diamonds" single.
In 2014, Helly Luv starred in the international film Mardan directed by Batin Ghobadi and Bahman Ghobadi where she played the leading role of Leila. Later that year she attended the Toronto International Film Festival becoming the first Kurdish actress to attend the event.
In 2015, Helly Luv shot the video for her single "Revolution" in an abandoned village near Mosul, where the Kurdish forces were fighting the ISIL. In the video of the single, she is seen painting the word "Revolution" on a tank shell in red lipstick and then Attack on the ISIL front lines just a few kilometers away.
In 2014 she created her Luv House non profit organization to help the people and animals in need throughout Kurdistan. On January 22, 2014 Helly Luv, A.R.K (Animal Rights Kurdistan), W.I.N.E (Women's International Network Erbil), Dr. Sulaiman Tameer, KOARP (Kurdistan Organization for Animal Rights Protection), Miss Kurdistan Fenik, and the owner of the Zoo helped close the doors to the Gelkand Park in Kurdistan (the second worst zoo in the world). Helly Luv and the other organizations moved the animals to a new and improved zoo in Erbil, the capital of the Kurdistan region.
On July 6, 2014, Helly Luv visited the peshmerga headquarters in the city of Duhok, Iraq near the border of Mosul, Iraq during the defense against ISIL; with a mission to deliver food and water to the peshmerga troops.
- Crowcroft, Orlando (20 February 2014). "Kurdish singer Helly Luv dismisses threats over music video". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 August 2014.
- Elkrief, Raphaëlle (12 August 2014). "HELLY LUV : LA SHAKIRA KURDE PART EN GUERRE". Grazia. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
- Reuters (15 July 2014). "Brave Kurdish pop star unfazed by Muslim terrorists' death threats". New York Post. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
- "Mardan". IMDB. Retrieved 3 September 2014.
- Ember, edited by Carol R.; Ember, Melvin; Skoggard, Ian (2004). Encyclopedia of diasporas : immigrant and refugee cultures around the world ([Online-Ausg.]. ed.). Dordrecht, Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers. ISBN 0-306-48321-1.CS1 maint: Extra text: authors list (link)
- Koskinen, Matti (17 August 2014). "Poptähdeksi noussut Helen Abdulla odottaa Kurdistanin itsenäisyyttä". Helsingin Sanomat. Retrieved 28 August 2014.
- "Mardan". IMDB. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
- Young, Deborah. "'Mardan': Toronto Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
- Bloom, Livia. "Risking It All: Helly Luv, Kurdistan's Pop Star and Mardan Actress". Filmmaker Magazine. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
- Crowcroft, Orlando (22 May 2015). "Iraq: Kurdish star Helen Abdulla shells Isis forces in her glossy music video". IBTimesUK. Retrieved 22 May 2015.
- Shelton, Tracey (22 May 2010). "Iraq: Dante's hell for animals?". Global Post. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
- Saleh, Hemin (10 February 2014). "New Zoo to open in Erbil". Basnews. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
- Sheppard, David (16 July 2014). "Kurdish singer Helly Luv ready to 'Risk it All' for independence". Reuters. Retrieved 5 August 2014.
- "Risk It All by Helly Luv". itunes. iTunes. Retrieved 9 February 2015.
- "Revolution". iTunes. iTunes. Retrieved 25 May 2015.
- "HellyLuv – Down On The Floor". Mover.uz.
- "Mardan". IMDB. Retrieved 2 July 2015.
- "Flag Without A Country". IMDB. Retrieved 13 July 2017.
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