Women´s Art Festival:
Immigrant, Refugee, and
Friday, August 2nd to Sunday, August 4th, 2019
Saw Gallery (Arts Court)
67 Nicholas St, Ottawa, ON K1N 7B9
Passionate, dedicated Rwandan Canadian singer-songwriter djembe and guitar player. She sings in Kinyarwanda, Swahili, French and English; showcasing a unique blend of Rwandan folk, soul, Blues, jazz music.
Her musical journey began in Rwanda at age of 18 at the Kigali high School, Lycée Notre Dame De Citeaux, where she sang on several school events and in the choir. There she got the opportunity to work with musical instruments such as guitar and djembe. After being taught a few basic chords by Sister Mediatrice, she composed her first song ‘Agahinda’, which means sorrow in English. She went on to compose other songs like Umurage (Proud Legacy), Wanalia (They cry)” just to name a few. Since then, Empress Nyiringango has been invited to participate in different festivals in Rwanda, Egypt, Kenya, Congo and Canada.
She has also performed with local and international artists such as Mugala Neema from Tanzania, Mighty Popo from Rwanda, Yawo form Togo and Kidumu from Burundi, then collaborated with a collective of Rwandan artists in songs like “Christmas in Darfur”, a project that was funded by Aegis Trust in Partnership with Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre to promote peace in Darfur (Sudan). This provided her the opportunity to have her music to receive airplay in Rwanda and abroad.
Since her arrival in Canada, she has been performing in different cities such as Toronto, Quebec City, Montreal and her current hometown Ottawa. Empress Nyiringango is grateful for the support she got from the Ontario Arts Council for her debut album "Resilience" released in 2016; and Canada Council for the Arts for her Rwandan folk & Jazz fusion project.