With this achievement, Kidjo becomes the most-awarded female artist in Africa, with over 150 laurels, including five Grammys.
By Hope Ibiale
Veteran Beninese singer-songwriter, Angélique Kidjo, has been announced as one of the recipients of the 2023 Polar music prize. With this achievement, the Grammy-award-winning artiste becomes the most-awarded female artist in Africa, with over 150 laurels, including five Grammys.
Honoured alongside Kidjo this year will be Chris Blackwell, founder of Island Records in the UK, and Estonian composer, Arvo Pärt. The laureates will each receive a cash prize of 600,000 kroner ($58,000) at a ceremony in Stockholm on May 23, 2023. Kidjo will join the two previous recipients from Africa: South Africa’s Miriam Makeba, and Senegal’s Youssou N’Dour.
In an official statement by Kidjo, she said, “To be awarded the Polar Music Prize is humbling. I have no words to say how important this is for me. It comes with a sense of responsibility that is bestowed upon me as an artist to continue to do great work. I will do my best to be a proud recipient of the Prize through my work as a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, on behalf of the children, and as an ambassador of music, to help create a world in which we can all live in peace.”
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Angélique Kpasseloko Hinto Hounsinou Kandjo Manta Zogbin Kidjo, popularly known as Angélique Kidjo, is a Beninese-French singer-songwriter, actress, and activist noted for her diverse musical influences and creative music videos. Aside from music, Kidjo is also the founder of The Batonga Foundation, a foundation dedicated to empowering young women in Benin. Some of her music projects include Remain in Light, Celia, Oremi, Mother Nature, and many others.
Since its inaugural ceremony in 1992, the Polar Music Prize, often called the Nobel Prize of Music, has been regarded as one of the most prestigious music awards. The Swedish international award, founded in 1989 by Stig Anderson, is awarded annually to individuals, groups, and institutions for exceptional musical achievements.