Find out what sports and music have in common from a singer-surfer
Roro Nela

Resilient. Original. Radiant. Optimistic.

This is how 37-year old Dubai-based singer-songwriter describes herself with acrostics. Rightfully so, her life story is nothing short of these four suitably apt words in its peculiar context. Her music journey began when she joined the piano conservatory at age 4 which introduced her to the amorous world of classical music.

She shares her vivid recollection of how music served no room spared for fun but all about discipline. A keen sense of fondness to sing Disney songs moved her as a child. After hearing Whitney Houston's stellar voice through a CD her dad bought her, Roro knew instantaneously that she was going to express her soul to the world through music.

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musivv dives in an interview with Czech-Lebanese water sports enthusiast Roro.

Please share with us fond memories growing up.

I would jump on every stage and steal the mic from other kids and as a young teenager, I would sing to my friends during our school breaks, which was so much fun! At 16, I started taking voice lessons professionally and perform at small concerts here and there. I even participated in singing competitions and joined choirs where we’d perform with famous conductors. All these experiences led to where I am today. Even with music being my passion, I had to go to university and work in the corporate world with a full-time job. It didn’t give me much room to pursue my music career seriously. Nevertheless, here I am today releasing my first single!

I would jump on every stage and steal the mic!

Who inspired you?

My father inspired me! He used to listen to a lot of diverse genres of music: Pavarotti, Andrea Bocelli, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Queen, I mean you name the artist, and he had all their CDs and cassettes. I used to feel he collected music. He would say: “You heard this? Feel alive!”

How about your water sports journey how did that come about?

My husband is a big fan of water sports in particular wake surfing, of course, he had been trying to convince me for 2 years to try and I was always reluctant due to my fear of water. I love swimming don’t get me wrong but losing my dad in the sea at the age of 17 was traumatizing and I just didn't know how I could overcome it. Around Christmas time last year, I had finally decided to give it a try. I was pleasantly surprised and found it super fun! It is a very tiring learning process and sometimes frustrating. But there is a moment when you are relaxed on the wave and you feel this connection with water, it is truly soothing and exciting!

What gives you a sense of peace and zen? Music or sports? Both?

Both music and sports relax me, I can’t see sports without music. But music is the essence of everything, I hear music everywhere, whether through voices, instruments, the wind blowing over the trees, the waves rolling on a shore. To me music is life.

What do you think is the common link between sports and music

For me, wake surfing has made me discover different vibes in music and it opened my creativity in a direction I never expected, I mean I wrote 'Move With The Waves' just after a wake surf session! Sports in general is inspiring whether I’m running, wake surfing, or practicing yoga. Music is always with me and it makes me feel alive.

Who would you want to collaborate with?

My favourite composer is Ludovico Einaudi, my dream would be for us to collaborate. If it is a singer then I’d say Khalid, I love his vibe and he has so much soul when he sings!

What has the current global crisis reveal about you as a person?

I don’t give up and I always have hope. I mean, I managed to release a single during a pandemic at the age of 37!

I don’t give up and I always have hope!

How are you coping with the pandemic?

I get sad when I see all these people getting sick some of whom are dying and I also get worried because we don’t know when this pandemic will be over. But I have done more in my personal projects now than all the years combined. I also got certified as a yoga teacher and took back painting. I try to see the glass half full.

If you will write 4 lines in a song to summarize your life, what would it be?

Born at sunrise with a pink gold sky
Follow unicorns when I close my eyes
Love passionately all the nature around
Making my wish come true one day at a time

Roro is living up to her name. Her contagious resilience, originality, radiance and optimism radiates in her passion to serenade the world with her music. One wave at a time.

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MUSIC+ is musivv's segment dedicated to musical artists who excel in other disciplines such as sports, health, theater, film and fashion. Features under this segment are eligible for a nomination under this category on The musivv Awards (TMAs) annual recognition.

September 12, 2020

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