Starred \\ Ivan Irakoze speaks on debut ‘Real EP’

Ivan Irakoze goes candid

Musungu: Hello Ivan? 

Ivan: Hey

Musungu: Let me jump right in…How does it feel to have a debut poetry EP?

Ivan: It feels amazing really. To have a body of work you’ve worked on and see the final product and release it out into the world, it’s hard to describe that feeling.

Musungu: It does sound like a really wonderful experience. Why did you settle on the title ‘Real’?

Ivan: I settled on the title after most of the tracks were done. One of them was the fifth track, ‘Real’, and I felt like that track contained what I really wanted people to get from the EP, considering the concept of it. I felt ‘Real’ was an appropriate title

Musungu:  How has the reception been so far?

Ivan: It’s been really positive. I honestly didn’t expect all the love it’s been getting. And I’ve had great conversations about the different themes and tracks on the EP.

Musungu: That is great stuff, how was it like working with Nicole, the only featured artist on this EP and C-Money, the money who produced?

Ivan: They’re so talented I wouldn’t have had it any other way. I admired their work before I thought about making an EP so when it came to figuring out who to work with on the EP, the choice was pretty quick and easy.

Musungu: Aside from what people are saying about the EP. What do you want your fans to get from the EP?

Ivan: Maaan, just ‘love’ from my point of view. I love concept projects that tell stories and I’ve realized that, that’s how I want to share parts of me and my thoughts in all my works going forward. I just want people to feel it and contemplate all the themes addressed.

Musungu: How much support have you gotten from fellow artists, while creating the EP, and how much inspiration have you drawn from them?

Ivan: The EP and the show wouldn’t have turned out the way they did without the support of a number of artists and friends. They’ve helped me create different parts of the whole project, critically analyze the EP, push me to see it through, and get it out there. I appreciate the friendships I’ve made throughout the years I’ve spent in Nairobi’s Arts scene.

Musungu: Talking about the launch, it was spectacular by the way. Would you enlighten us about the costumes you and agents wore? And of course the lighting montage-with changing colors-giving life to your performance…

Ivan: Haha the attire kinda happened randomly. The day before the show we were rehearsing and we asked each other what the other was wearing for the show. We both said green. The lighting was done purposely. The first track had white light because it represents a blank canvas in a way, a beginning. The second track’s colour was pink because it’s about falling in love so that’s pretty self-explanatory. The third track addresses insecurities and we figured green was an ideal color for it. Track four consists of an argument between the two protagonists, so blue for the blues. Red was the colour for the fifth track because Real defines what a relationship is. And finally yellow because optimism of things working out and lasting.

Musungu: Aw! That’s was thoughtful. All the best.

Ivan: Thank you! And thank you for this interview.



*This interview first appeared on Afroway MagazineAfroway Magazine Issue 03

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