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Elyanna Is the First-Ever Artist To Fully Perform in Arabic at Coachella

when regional talent meets international recognition

What a time it is to be an Arab right now. If for the past few decades, the music industry struggled to hail an artist as the chosen one from its respective generation, it feels as if today, the choices are almost endless. Pick your genre and best believe that there will be a figure who’s made a tremendous amount of noise to crown the ambassador of sonic productions from our neck of the woods. And when it comes to pop, all eyes seem to be locked on 21-year-old Elyanna, even more so after this weekend, as the part-Palestinian singer and songwriter made history as the first vocalist at Coachella to perform a full set  in Arabic. 

Coinciding with the Arab-American Heritage Month in the United States, the Ghareeb Alay singer took to the Gobi stage during weekend one of Coachella, which kicked off on Friday in Indio, California. Elyanna became the first-ever artist to sing exclusively in Arabic at the annual music festival during a history-making set that included hits like Ana Lahale and Al Kawn Janni Mawk. The Palestinian-Chilean singing sensation also debuted a new single titled Janene Orrr during her performance.


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Une publication partagée par Elyanna اليانا (@elyanna)

Elyanna isn’t the first Palestinian artist to perform at the renowned music festival, however. DJ Sama’ Abdulahdi, who is largely credited with introducing techno music to Palestine, performed at the popular festival in California for the first time last year.

Already a recognizable name within the Arab music space, Elyanna’s growth has been exponential since she released her first track on streaming platforms in 2019. Generating vertiginous numbers across her profiles ever since, her sonic identity has seduced crowds from both sides of the world as her blend of Latin American tones and Middle Eastern rhythmics, which are rooted in her mixed background, have convinced even the biggest skeptics into labeling the songstress as one of the most promising talents around today, not only on the region’s scene but also on the international one.

“It’s a big responsibility. I’m representing my culture, but I’m really working very hard,” Elyanna told ABC News ahead of her Coachella performance. “The performance is all about our instruments and the performance is all about our vocal skills and our attitude as Arab girls,” she said, adding, “It’s just representation. The performance is my culture, it’s who I am.”

At just 21-years-old, it seems as if only the sky is the limit for the rising star as no benchmark or milestone feels high or tough enough to reach for the Los Angeles-based crooner. Pumping fans with pride each time she steps close to a microphone or a recording booth, Elyanna’s hype is only growing. Although her simple presence at Coachella already feels like a huge win, she continues to set her sights even higher, aiming to for more and better with talent, determination, and passion fueling every one of her moves. 

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