With a debut Greek single, Culturescope showrunner and presenter PAUL LAMBIS speaks to British Cypriot singer and songwriter Eleni C about her burgeoning music career, her defining moments, and her work as a mental health advocate in the United Kingdom.
Born and raised in north London, Eleni C has always been actively involved in the Greek Cypriot community, learning about every facet of her cultural history through Greek school or by attending one of the many social events hosted by London’s Greek Cypriot population. “I have always felt a great sense of patriotism towards my ancestry, and I love spending time in Cyprus, either for vacation or for charitable activities.
In the early stages of her career, Eleni C was selected to represent the United Kingdom in the International Music Festival, taking first place in the categories of Best Original Song and Best Female Singer. “I have always used music as a method to express myself and as a form of escape,” she said. “I had a duty to myself to pursue a career that would fulfil me.”
In terms of her performance, Eleni C said she has been influenced by Jennifer Lopez and Eleni Foureira’s dynamic choreographed performances, “which can move even the toughest of crowds,” in addition to Adele’s sensitive, yet potent approach to music and song writing that captivates and mesmerises her audience.
Audiences that enjoy dancing and having a good time are drawn to Eleni C’s energetic and upbeat style of music. “My songs are a natural vehicle for delivering important messages to people about life events, empowering them to believe in themselves and their abilities,” she added.
In the past, Eleni C has performed as an opening act for Little Mix, Tulisa, Fleur East, Alesha Dixon, Foxes, Little Boots, and Stooshe. She has also shared the stage with Jessie J, Nicole Sherzinger, Mabel, Becky Hill, Peggy Zina, and ska-reggae band Locomondo among others.
But it is as an advocate for mental health that Eleni C has become an inspiration to young people, combining music and philanthropy to create awareness of a cause that is particularly close to her heart. “I grew up seeing family members and close friends experience mental health difficulties, witnessing first-hand how it consumed their lives as well as the individuals that cared and loved them,” she said. “Many of my colleagues in the music industry have struggled with mental health issues that have frequently compelled them to leave the business.”
Eleni C has visited many schools around the UK as part of her nationwide music and mental health school tour, where she speaks to students about the value of mental health in both their day-to-day life and hopes for the future. She has also collaborated on several campaigns with mental health charities Young Minds UK and The Mix, and is an ambassador of the Yianis Christodoulou Foundation, which empowers children and families to realise their full potential. “The secret to success in life is strong mental health, especially when it is handled at a young age”.
She recently stepped out of her comfort zone and recorded her debut single in Greek, characterising the song as a depiction of the allure, power, and fire of all Greek women as well as their drive to pursue their dreams. “The charm and sultriness of a Greek Cypriot woman, among other things, are echoed in the lyrics,” she said. “I am extremely pleased about the music video, which was filmed on location in Cyprus, allowing me to highlight the natural beauty of my island.”