Q & A

Cesaria Evora

Cesaria Evora, 60, was born in Cape Verde, a group of islands off West Africa. The daughter of a violinist, she began performing morna, a mournful genre of blues, at 16. In Europe, tapes of her performances were made into albums. She left the islands for the first time in her 40s and by her 50s was a major star. Dubbed the barefoot diva, her fans include Madonna and Ricky Martin. She is performing at the Royal Festival Hall, London, on July 13.

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Health, and being able to work.

What is your greatest fear?

I have no fears. If something is to happen, then so be it.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

My children.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

I don't like people that lie.

Where would you like to live?

In Sao Vicente, Cape Verde - where I live.

What makes you depressed?

The future of my kids and grandchildren in a poor country like Cape Verde.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?

There were some warts on my feet that bothered me a lot, and I was cross-eyed. I had operations to fix them both.

Do you believe in monogamy?

No, because it's not true.

What is your favourite word?

I have two: 'yes' and 'no'.

What is your favourite building?

My house.

For what cause would you die?

I would give my life to end world hunger.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Sincerity.

Have you ever said 'I love you' and not meant it?

If I say it, it's because I mean it.

What is your greatest regret?

I should have left Cape Verde to start my career a little earlier in my life.

When and where were you happiest?

After 1988, when my success began in France.

How often do you have sex?

I've done it a lot, but right now I'm in recess.

What single thing would improve the quality of your life?

I'm hoping to find a husband sometime in the near future.

What would your motto be?

Barefooted

What keeps you awake at night?

Jet lag.

Do you believe in life after death?

No, it's a one-way ticket.

How would you like to be remembered?

Through the music I sing.

Contributor

Rosanna Greenstreet

The GuardianTramp

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