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National Goodwill Ambassadors



National Goodwill Ambassadors

© Robyn Martin

Aster Awoke, one of Ethiopia's greatest music icon, signed on as a Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF Ethiopia in October 2010. Ms. Awoke has worked with UNICEF Ethiopia to promote school hand-washing campaigns and is committed to working with UNICEF on behalf of Ethiopian children and women.

Aster was born around 1960 in gondar, Ethiopia but grew up in Addis Ababa and soon got deep love for singing. As a teenager she sang at Hager Fikir Theatre then later sang in other clubs too. By 1977 she had sung with various groups and went on to record several albums on cassette in Ethiopia singing solo. Aster joined the Roha Band briefly in 1978 before going to USa in 1979. Her purpose was to pursue her education but her friends persuaded her to continue singing and she is still based there now in Los Angeles.

Aster is very popular in Ethiopia as evidenced by over 50000 fans who attended her performance in Addis Ababa in 1997. She causes a stir in other places too - take an already full house at Ronnie Scott's in London in 1989 at Aster's first UK performance and you get a large crowd causing a road block outside as they try to get an ear in.

Many of Aster's songs have been included on CD compilations. Aster's international CDs to date are Aster 1989, Kabu 1991, Ebo 1993, Live in London 1997, recorded as both CD and Video from her concert at Hammersmith Palais. She also has a new release, Hagere (2000), she sings her own compositions in a unique style, her music touching on jazz, soul and r & b, accompained by musicians playing instruments such as saxaphone, drums and marimba.



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