DJ Lala on the mix
“DJ Lala is a young woman with a passion for music who enjoys life to its fullest”, that’s how she describes herself in a sentence. Born Landryne Uwimana, DJ Lala was raised in Burundi until she moved to Sweden in 2004 with her mother. She currently lives in a city called Uppsala in Sweden with her mother and little sister.
Akeza.net: You were 7 years old when you left Burundi. Is there anything you do to keep the “Burundian culture” in you?
DJ Lala: The few years that I was raised in Burundi, I got to experience music and dancing from a very young age. My whole family is full of joyful people and music has always been a part of our lives. I was surrounded by dancers and singers during my childhood.
I had many hobbies as a child (music, fashion, food, sports, and art). My nickname was and still is “Gashuhe”, since I could not be still and I always wanted to try everything (at the same time sometimes). I’ve always seen the possible in the impossible.
My mother was very cultural and was in multiply dancing groups and a few of her sisters and brothers sang in choirs. You could say that I was basically dancing and singing in my mother’s belly during her pregnancy. I ended up in the same dancing groups as my mother and choirs as my aunties and uncles in church.
Once me and my mother reached and settled in Sweden, I connected with more and more Burundians. We eventually started our own choir and traditional dance group during our first few years in Sweden. Cynthia Iteka, who is like a big sister to me, whom you all may recognize was in that very choir. Today, I and a couple of other young ladies in my age started a dance group called INGENZI to keep the culture alive, even though we are abroad.
Akeza.net: Is being a DJ your childhood dream?
DJ Lala: I never really saw myself as a DJ, ever. I was just a person that enjoyed music, loved sharing it, and witnessing how others experienced it. It is also very hard, as a kid, to even think that you could ever become a DJ, model or a musician. Those kinds of careers are nothing that most parents «allow» or wish us to end up having, which is very common, in my opinion. It took a great while until my mother could understand what it was all about and accepted it.
DJ Lala sitting next to her mixer
Akeza.net: Which kind of music do you like?
DJ Lala: My all-time favorite genre is Afro beats. Nothing can take the love I have for those drums and beats that will not allow you to sit/stand still. I am a person full of energy; Afro beats and dancehall are the perfect music that allows me to release it comfortably. I can basically listen to everything; I have a very open mind for any type of music; except for rock/metal which my head cannot stand.
Akeza.net: Apart from dancing what else do you like in life?
DJ Lala: I love playing basketball. It has been my favorite sport of all time. I don’t follow the games on TV, so I cannot sit here and say that I have a favorite team or player like any other person would. I’m a fan of the game in general.
Other than that, I would personally say that my nr.1 “hobby” is FOOD. Indian, Thai, Chinese, Ethiopian. I love taking care of people, and I love babies/kids. That is how I came to a conclusion of what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. My dream career is to become a mid-wife.
Taking care of women in that specific period of their lives and helping them bring life to this world, is a mighty power. It is a big responsibility, but one I would love to take.
Akeza.net: Any project for the future?
DJ Lala: I am definitely going to make more mixes in various genres. I also hope that the time will allow me to travel more. I usually post it on my social media (Instagram/Snapchat/Facebook) any upcoming events that I am apart of or that I will attend. Stay tuned!
To be continued…
Interview by Miranda Akim’