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RADIO [ VivaCité - RTBF : Quoi de neuf ? ]
Today the 7th of July we could listen a very interesting interview (in French) for the belgian radio station RTBF. The program title is "Les Petits Papiers" (small pieces of paper). Mika draws pieces of paper with different words. Then he talks about what the word means to him and he tells some stories from his life. Very interesting because this is not an interview about his new album. I've learned a lot of new things about Mika. https://www.rtbf.be/auvio/detail_les-petits-papiers-mika?id=2518206&jwsource=fb&fbclid=IwAR2r0XuRt2-rwRVZ6RKvo4wZsJDox_6TeNaRHfRUCCzN4I6FPionpWVNrgs Mika was talking about words: Popular Superstition Barbara - la copine de ma mere - A ECOUTER POUR RIRE!!!! Melody"- sur creation - sur un bracelet fait pas sa soeur,e que Mika porte sur sa main (From the Moon the Earth is Heaven)- sur Beauregard, qui s'habille comme Mika quand il etait petit Treats ("Saucisses" "Gourmandise") - actually he did not want to talk about sausages so he drew a word "Treats"(Gourmandise) I am not able to translate word to word now, so juste some intersting parts. POPULAR This word used to be considered as very negative. They say that music POP is accessible. But shoult it mean that it should be easy? No! For me this word is more than a status. Music POP it's a different language that classical music or jazz.... It leave an open door for people. Yu can't say that music POP is trash. Just look at the music from 80' and 90'. This word "popular" touches me a lot because I defend it. Mika's father was anty-snob he hated an idea that some people, artistes can be above other people. This idea of prejudice was stranger for him. He was traveling a lot when he was a child and he is not scared by a new place by a different culture. He arrives with his suitcase and he feels himself home everywhere. His mom is the same. People create snobbery before knowing something. Mika's brother and sisters are like the parents. The curiosity is bigger than fear. Maybe it will end up badly or it maybe the best thing ever. It makes you feeling happy because you are flexible and you bent with the wind. You don't break. In the past Mika thought that it was normal. But now he understands that it's a big gift he received from his parents. SUPERSTITION Mika is supersticious. And he feels energies. When he talks with someone he is able to "read" more that they are saying. He feels energy of a place. Every thing has its own memory, every place has its memory. Objects in a room have a collective memory of people passing by. And he can feel it. There is an idea that everything we have we do not own. And it doesn't mean that Mika is communist :-) Mika had a friend selling things at a flea market. And he was selling them at very high prices. Sometimes Mika was buying something from him. Mika was sure that the item had higher value and he asked his friend why he wanted from him only 900 EUR instead of 3'000-4'000 EUR. And his friend said that he gives prices according to what the items represented TO HIM. Like this he respected the soul/spirit of the item. He said: "surround yourself by beautie and emotion. Because nothing belongs to you. We borrow things for some years and then they go to another owner. The price you pay it's just a way to stay close to this thing for next 30-40 years". Comming back to superstition you can't mix it with a mystical thing. Superstition is connected with obsession and control. A question: Is this superstiotion that you always clean your shoes befor going on stage? When you dance on stage shoes are very important. And it's abominable if you soles are dirty. In private life Mika does not wear nice shoes - generally old "converses". But on stage clothes, shoes have to be perfect! His nails as well should be clean evenif in life there is soil, mud, painting on them. As his grandma was doing before going to church, Mika is doing the same to go on stage. Actually it's not a superstition, it's a rite. He can superstition that he likes having 3 same things. Entering a hospital room he has to enter with his right leg. But it's just a control. People would like to control everything but the best things happen when do not expect them. BARBARA It can be Barbara Walters, Barbra Streisand, on Barbara - his mom's friend. She is very rich. She used to be buddist and now she is Jewish. She changed religion. She is from a big american family and when she was buddist she was a sponsor of Dalai Lama. When Mika was 11-12 yo she took him and his mom to a huge arene to listen to Dalai Lama during a conference. The meeting took 3 days. Mika was in a second row in front od Dalai Lama. He fell asleep and all of sudden he wakes up seeing Dalai Lama laughing and pointing his finger on Mika. Poor Mika became red. He did not know it was a dream or it was happening in real. And for more there was Annie Lennox in a chair next to Mika. She was looking at him too and she wasn't happy. Mika was joking that it was the first time the whole venue was keeping their eyes on him. And then there is Barbara - a french singer that Mika likes a lot. Mika has a collection of her albums and radio performances. MELODY Melody it's a noise, sound. Language is a style. Mika when he listens to Cesarea Evora - even he doesn't understands Portuguese he understands a song. Melody is a soul of the music. Mika was attracted by melody when he was very young. It was something that could change the way you feel (he had boxes of tapes with music sorted by emotion). What was the first song h liked? He does not remember but maybe something that his parents were listening to: Joni Mitchell, Bob Dylan or Joan Baez. For him Joan Baez was a boss. Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell on second place and Bob Dyland on the third. When Mika was young and had a problem with communication with others he was writing songs for them. Now he almost does not do it anymore as writing songs is his profession. When you are musician people are judging it in a different way. On the other hand he does it for himself while writing a song: to become a person from a song. " I want to be a guy from the song. I don't want to be myself". FRIENDS Friends from conservatory... one who became a world famous classical singer, some who gave up because they wanted be on stage but when they couldn't they didn't want to stay in a shadow... it was very hard for them... some play in orchestras..some are not here anymore... You have to be in a conservatory to understand it. You enter a palace of art, then you are thrown out to the world and you have to fight. Mika called this palace of art "a palace of tears" because everyday you could see someone crying. It was a permanent frustration... a permanent feeling of not being good enough. Mika understood very early - as he started to sing at age of 8 - that you have to fight all the time. Not to fight to be popular or to have a success, but just to survive. Mika left school before having his diploma - with his professional experience he did need any diploma, any title. Mika and his brother and sisters had to be creative at home. Because even if you have nothing you can create something. We are surrounded by things which can be inspiring. On an empty stage you create a show, you can create a video... you have to keep your eyes open and look around you. At home they couldn't buy gifts with money - it was "dirty". They had to create something. The same with clothes. His mom was sewing the clothes. Mika and his brother and sisters were choosing the fabrics. Mika even when he was 5 yo, he already was choosing fabrics. And he had this strange idea that his bow-tie should be done from the same fabric that his trousers. Do you want to know something special? Mika's nephew Beauregard (5 yo) without knowing anything does exactly the same! He wears every day a bow-tie... even going to play football he puts on his polo "LaCoste" and a bow-tie! And when he sees trousers in a shop he insists to have a bow-tie from the same fabric! And he is only 5!!! Is it in the ADN of Penniman family???? When Mika told him not to do it because others will take is a very strane, Beauregard doesn't understand it. And Mika when he was 5 did have this problem either. He assumed his choice. Even if children were laughing at him. When you are a child you don't understand a problem of discriminaton. Good, because you don't want to hide and to pretend you are someone else. It becomes more complicated with age, when you are more conscious. But he has no regrets. Question: and now? You still create things as gifts? Mika: "You can't see it but I am wearing bracelets made by my sister. And inside there is a short message. She told me to read it when I loose my pespective. It sais: "From The Moon the Earth is Heaven". Because often we think we are living in hell. And this shirt was made by another sister". Next word is SAUSSAGES - no it was a joke: the word was "TRUST" (confiance in French). Mika didn't want to talk about this subject and he took another piece of paper. TREATS (Gourmandise in French) In Mika's family there is many diabetics. Mika is not (for the moment - he jokes). It's an awful disease. You realise it when you are ill and diabetes makes the healing very complicated. And on the other side there is sugar. For Mika "gourmandise" is sugar. Sugar in Penniman family is very important. Mika's grandma always had sweets in her hand bag. Mika loved to open it and smell the flavor of them. Mixed with parfums fragrance... Sugar is present in hard moments of Mika's family. Grandma of Mika's mom was dying in a hospital and she was begging Mrs Penniman to bring her a coffee and she added: "You know what to do with". Mika's mom brought a cup of coffee with 6 cubes of sugar. She was 95. And then Mika tell another story: "Recently I lost someone. Her name was Bella, Isabella. She was a nanny of my brother Fortune and my little sister Zuleika. But most of time she was not working for my family. She was adopted by my family. She had been living with us during 15 years. You can even see her in my videos. One day she was not feeling good. I took her to a hospital and our family from all over the world came to say goodbye to her. At certain moment she stopped reacting to anything. She didn't want to answer. Someone brough ice cream and put a little on her lips. And this lady of 94 opens her mouth and swallows ice cream. And all she sais is: "mmmmmmmmm". I said to myself: we are coming back to sugar". Question: And what would you like to eat as your last meal? Mika: "Spaghetti with tomato sauce". Question: Gourmandise - for you it concers as well life? Are you hungry of life, hungry of stage? Mika: "While talking about superstition we were talking about control. I told you as well that during the whole life you have to be creative. The same with life: you have to feel it, to take pleasure of the moment. When something manifests just in front of you, you have to take it. And to say: It's good, it's beautiful. Like this interview which came unexpected today". END
Back at the start of summer Belgian public radio and TV station RTBF organised a huge flashmob in aid of charity. If you’re in Belgium you may have seen footage from the mob on your TV recently and if you did you will have noticed that it was all soundtracked by Mika’s ‘Love Today’! Luckily the video has now reached the online realm and is available to Mika fans all around the globe - check it out now on Youtube All proceeds from the event went to Cap 48. You can read more about their charitable work at http://www.rtbfmedia.be/cap48. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- http://www.mikasounds.com/blog/post/821/Belgium_Flashmobs_To_Mika