Rykka is a multitalented singer and songwriter who hails from Canada but now calls Switzerland home. She started as an acoustic folk artist, but it was pop music that brought her fame: With The Last Of Our Kind, Rykka won over both the audience and an expert jury in the Swiss national final in February, and therefore won the ticket to Stockholm, where she will represent Switzerland in May.
Tucked away in the vast hills and deep lakes near Zürich, Switzerland, and in the Canadian wilderness surrounding Vancouver, Rykka has been writing feverishly and honing her next sound. Change has been a constant for the multitalented songwriter, who started as an acoustic folk artist under her name Christina Maria before reinventing herself as Rykka and emerging with an alternative pop bang.
Her new single, The Last Of Our Kind, is a triumphant mega-ballad about standing for love at the end of the world. It was produced by Warne Livesey at Toronto's Coalition Music, and Rykka recorded the vocals in the Swiss village of Belalp. Now, after winning the Swiss national final, Rykka is honoured to represent her homeland in the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm.
Her album Beatitudes is an offering to the pop gods, with throbbing beats and mega-choruses contrasted by confessional comedowns. She will spend 2016 on tour, and the album will be out in the fall.
Things you should know about Rykka
What are the most interesting aspects about your entry?
I'm so excited to be representing Switzerland this year with my song, The Last Of Our Kind. It's a song that I wrote with my friends, Mike James, Jeff Dawson and Warne Livesey about standing up for love and what you believe in. We wrote it just for Eurovision, but also for my new album that is coming out this year: Beatitudes.
What are the most impressive facts about you?
I grew up in Vancouver, Canada. My grandfather was from Switzerland and migrated to Canada to set up a beautiful Swiss Bakery, he also played a big part in the Swiss Society of Vancouver. That's where I had my first performance with my brother and sister when I was 9. I started playing guitar and writing my own songs when I was 16, and pretty much since then I've been a full time musician.
Do you have a (lucky) routine before you go on stage?
I surround myself with people who believe in me and who I love. I've had so many people support me for so long, my family and my great friends. I've also met a lot of new supporters, and I'm thankful and so blessed for everyone. It feels good to be part of such an amazing team.
Why is the Eurovision Song Contest important for you?
I really feel it bringing all the best people together. So many people that I have met have so much passion, I feel like I can really connect with that! It's important for me in my life to find other passionate people and appreciate art and talent. It's so special for me to represent Switzerland as well because I live here now and I truly love it SO much. Switzerland is such an important part of who I am in my heritage and in my life today.