Micha Marah Biography
Micha Marah , born as Aldegonda AF Leppens is a Belgian singer. She is well known for representing Belgium at the Eurovision Song Contest in 1979 with the song “Hey Nana”.
She released her first single in 1969, when she was only 16 years old. She became famous nationally with thanks to Canzonissima 1971, the program, in which the Flemish delegation for the Eurovision Song Contest was chosen, she presented the following songs; Tamboerke, I am seventeen, That ring and Balabaloe, Nicole & Hugo with Good Morning tomorrow were chosen to go to Dublin . Tamboerke song reached the hit parade and became Marah’s first hit. She was also in the hit parade with the songs I am a girl , Stars in the sky and Hasta Mañana.
In 1979 she was again chosen with no competition to represent Belgium on the Eurovision podium. On 3 March 1979, throughout the pre-selection, she sang three songs. My diary, Comment ça va and Hey nana .She was chosen latter to go to Jerusalem. In the end, she traveled to Israel. She sang the controversial song on March 31, 1979, finishing as 18th and sharing last. Then she din’t want to sing Hey nana again. Her version did not appear on record.
In 1983, she released an LP with nursery rhymes entitled ‘ Only for children’, which turned out to be a success and more followed, part 2 in 1984 and part 3 in 1985. She was also seen as a TV presenter with Marijn De Valck in the youth program City on stilts . In the eighties and nineties she presented radio programs like Hadiemicha and Kwistig with music on Radio 2. She appered in various television programs as a singer, actress or panelist. In September 1993, she released a single with the title of the same title. She also broke with schlager.
She kept on releasing singles and albums till 2000, some in the English language. She was inspired by Irish folksongs and released an album in 1998 with edits. She was part of the Soul DivaZ in 2006, together with Alana Dante and Sandra Kim . They brought a repertoire of hits from the sixties. In 2016, she joined MENT TV with ‘Hadiemicha 2.0’, a new version of the radio program she presented earlier on BRT 2 . In her program she invites a BV or artist. The astronomer Erna Droesbeke explains the character of the guest.
Micha Marah Age
She was born as Aldegonda AF Leppens in Turnhout, Belgium. She is 64 years old as of 2018.
Micha Marah Husband
It is not well known whether she had a husband or not.
Micha Marah Hits|Songs
- Ik Droom Jou In Kleur
- Als Ik Naar Hem Kijk
- Hasta Manãna
- De Muis
- Suza Nina
- Nu zijt wellekome
- Ere zij God
- Heel alleen kan ik niet leven
- Ik droomde van een mooi kerstfeest, / Een roze fris ontloken / Witte wonderl and Er is een kindeke geboren op aard
- Er is een kindeke geboren op aard
- Gloria in Excelsis Deo
- Bronzen torenklokken luiden / Engelenkoren die zingen / Jingle Bells
Micha Marah Hey Nana
Micha Marah Interview
Micha Marah fights for the Flemish song
TURNHOUT / OOSTHOVEN – Micha Marah, that is the red girl from the past who sang so ‘Tamboerke’ with such enthusiasm? And is it not already too old? Nothing from it. When we visit the Kempense singer in Turnhout, she is more than alive and kicking. With a private television program on Ment TV, a music theater show and a single ‘You’ that jumps from 17 to 13 on the day of the interview in the Flemish Ultratop.
That my perception about the age of Micah Marah is so wrong, is because in my childhood I heard them sing ‘Tamboerke’ in ‘Canzonissima’, the music program in which an entry was chosen for the Eurovision Song Contest. “Nicole & Hugo then won”, says Micha. “But in the last resort Lily Castel and Jacques Raymond had to take their place because Nicole had unexpectedly got jaundice. Many people think that I am old now. I think that’s because I was already on stage as a teenager and – except for a few interruptions – I’ve never been away. “The red hairs of yesteryear are golden but her eyes can still fire. When we talk about the VRT, for example, it does not think it necessary to make a music program where Flemish artists can show themselves. For the record:
But you were not born as Micha Marah?
“You really want to know? Officially I am Aldegonda AF Leppens. Fortunately, everyone called me Alda. When I was fifteen, I already sang in a rock band. And I was drum major at the St. Cecilia Harmonie van Oosthoven. It was Commander Van Herck who discovered me, the man who also had Marc Dex and Juul Kabas under his wing. He thought I should have an artist name. Not only because Alda did not look like anything but to protect me from negative criticism. “Then you better distance yourself from your character because not everyone likes your songs,” he said. And that is true, Karel Van Herck was a wise man. Together with Marcel Hendrickx, the later mayor of Turnhout, who was a journalist at Gazet Van Antwerpen, he wrote a contest. From that came the name Micah Marah. Micha is a Russian boy name, what I actually found original. And Marah means fightros. No better name could fit me. ”
Have you never felt a ‘child star’ at that young age? For example, Sandra Kim testifies at the expo about child labor currently running at MIAT in Ghent how she completely missed her childhood.
“Hola, that’s a difference, is not it? Sandra was thirteen when she won the Eurovision Song Contest. She even had to stop her school education. I was a singer who had a hit. I was able to finish my school but afterwards I continued to attend classes: dancing, diction and singing lessons at the academy with Mrs Pipeleers. He did not like it any more that I sang with a rock band. She feared that I would upset my voice. I did indeed have a classical voice and even sang opera for a while. If I have missed something in my youth, it is that typical adolescent feeling: falling in love, butterflies in the stomach, going back and forth with a boyfriend, going out … I met my first partner when I was twenty and it was immediately serious. ”
Nicole & Hugo and Ann Christy preceded you at the Eurovision Song Contest. But when you were allowed to go to Jerusalem in 1979, it was not a success. Can we talk about it one more time?
“And then never again because there is something to put right about that episode. I had a stoneware number ‘Comment ça va?’ which also the audience that was allowed to vote in believed. But by all kinds of scheming behind the scenes of the composer, among others, I had to go to Jerusalem with ‘Hey Nana’. We have filed a lawsuit against the then BRT because ‘Hey Nana’ was plagiarism. I believe that our lawyer played the song in front of the judge on a recorder to compare it with the original. But the judge made no statement because he wanted additional research. And that time was not there. I just went to Jerusalem, sang Hey Nana, ended up in a shared last place and that’s it. But what I found the worst: I was unbelievably undermined by the press, besides, no journalist ever called me to ask how it really was. Only Story continued to support me. Then it did not take me for a second. ”
But you kept going anyway. You sang abroad, made four CDs with Irish folk music and you went to accompany Flemish artists yourself.
“Indeed, every artist – with a few exceptions – knows heights and lows in his career. When the Flemish showbizz collapsed, I concentrated on the booking and management agency that I had taken over with my friend a few years ago. We have launched a lot of young talent, including Luc Steeno and Patrick Onzia. By the way, I also presented radio programs for thirteen years, such as ‘Hadiemicha’. And on television I did the children’s program ‘Thinking and Doing’ and ‘City on Stilts’ with Marijn De Valck. ”
Why did you stop with the management office six years ago?
“Because there is no more forum for young artists! (Micha’s eyes fire now). In the eighties you still had the Soundmixshow on VTM, where I sat in the jury. The talent that was discovered there was also given a chance in Ten to See. But then it fell silent. Programs such as Idol or The Voice are all pretty but they have different interests than the participants. Anyone who participates hopes to launch a singing career in this way. However, the channel is only interested in a good show. There is no longer any question of a new stage opportunity. And there is nothing at all on the VRT. You know, the government should require the VRT to program Flemish talent. I am on the board of Vlapo (Flemish Stage Artists), including Jo with the Banjo and Margriet Hermans. There have been talks with the VRT to pour the Ultratop into a television program by record companies with great difficulty. They do not even have to make recordings because every artist makes his own video clips. “But no, ‘there is no budget’ they say. While they are fucking working with our tax money. ”
You’re still very high.
“But of course! How can an artist break through if he or she has no face? That is bad! (is really on the move now). There is so much talent, just think of Wannes Capelle and Tourist LeMC. Do you know what they look like? No, no. While just that combination of a voice, a song and a face is necessary to be successful. Ah, I’m so sick of it … ”
Fortunately, there is now Ment TV, where you made a television version of Hadiemicha .
“Yes, that is really fun to do. Every week we portray a Flemish artist. I like to chat with colleagues, about their music experiences and how they are now in life. Moreover, in consultation with Dag Allemaal, I can dive into the program in the archives to prepare those interviews. Vanessa Chinitor was there last week, Marc Dex is the next. I’m really looking forward to that. When they asked me for the program, however, I doubted. It is a studio program without an audience, you can not fill that with just a conversation. And we do not have any images from older colleagues. The VRT also did not show its best side. When I asked them to be allowed to use old recordings of my guests, they presented a bill of 500 euros per withdrawal. That’s what I thought about it. ”
Are you still on the shelves yourself?
“Oh yes, with Connie Neefs I have the musical theater program ‘Long will we live’ .. Great to do. We go through all the stages of life that each person goes through, from birth to infancy, communions, marriages, your first job, retired and grandchildren … until we become one hundred. At each stage we compare how we experienced it compared to the generation today. The solemn communion for example: we received a missal and two or three paternosters. Now twelve-year-olds get an iPad. But there is also Woodstock and the musical Hair in it. We bring it with songs, monologues, images and spells that we project. Everything that has fascinated us and what captivates our audience is discussed. ”
Do you also sing with your other Kempen colleague: Margriet Hermans?
“That is a completely different concept. We each sing our own songs and in the end we sing together the duet ‘Only a woman’s heart’ that we also released on CD. ”
What would you like to do on a stage?
“I would love to play in a musical or a play. I have never worked in a company, outside the musical trio Soul Divaz with Sandra Kim and Alana Dante in 2006. Playing a character that is different from yourself and letting you direct it, that sounds great to me. I have occasionally thrown out a fish here and there but still without success. They may think that I do not mean it, but it is really a plan. ”
(Suddenly Micha picks up her smartphone, it is the moment that the Flemish Ultratop is announced.His single ‘You’ has risen four places and now stands at 13. “Yo-yo! Party!” Cheering Micha.)
You are clearly still overjoyed with success.
“Certainly. Singing has been my whole life. You know, I’ve always been able to stay active in showbiz. And if it went less on stage, I kept in touch with the world with the management agency, television and radio. That may have been my greatest happiness. That has never happened to me what other artists sometimes have to experience. If my career collapsed due to circumstances or lack of opportunities, I never had to work in the Delhaize. And of course also that Commander Van Herck then heard me sing in that rock group in 1968. It did put me on a different musical path, but I did not regret it for a second.