A chat with Leona Heine
This month’s Mover & Shaker has achieved A LOT in her 27 years. Growing up in Berlin and Brandenburg, Leona Heine started her musical education at just five years old, training in singing and guitar and from early youth writing her own songs. Today, she performs acoustic pop music, either solo or with her band 'Leona Heine and friends'. She has released many singles and several albums as well as appearing on TV shows, winning multiple music awards and still finds the time to teach music to children as well (pretty impressive, huh?). We managed to catch her this month in between her busy schedule to get to know her a bit better and of course get her take on the age-old pizza vs burger question.
Penta: What do you think of garden gnomes?
Leona: That’s a question I have never thought about. For me, garden gnomes are simply just there and you kind of see one wherever you go. Like in my grandma’s garden. I still remember the day one suddenly turned up in the vegetable plot with his red pointed cap and hoe. I was still a child and trying to figure out whether the story she told was true. Would this little guy come to life at night to tend the garden and then re-petrify at dawn? Anyway, I never caught him. Which makes them a mystery and memory for me, I guess!
P: Where do you feel most at home? Where is your ‘hood’?
L: Home is where I feel the most comfortable. And that – first and foremost – is with my family. In our house, on the sofa, guitar in hand, large cup of coffee, view of the garden – it’s perfect. Of course, I also feel at home on the stage. That’s where I am in my element, doing what I love.
P: Tell us about a project that is keeping you busy in this period.
L: Everything I do is somehow about music. It just fascinates me how powerful it is and what it can do to each and every one of us. Whether I get to supervise a project where young people learn to create music and blossom as a result, or whether I am on stage myself and looking into many faces filled with the kind of joy that live music lets you feel – it’s always magical. Currently, I am keeping particularly busy with a project where I and other musicians coached children with mental health conditions. We got to teach them about instruments, supported them in discovering hidden talents, and helped them to express themselves in a completely new way.
P: Who are your role models?
L: The only role models for me are my parents – both for different reasons. I try to take a leaf out of each of their books because I am so impressed by what they have been able to accomplish in their lives. And I don’t necessarily mean professionally, but also in their private lives and for the society we live in.
P: You have ten seconds to tell our readers why they should check you out.
L: Because I always think of something new. Usually, it will be a song, but it can also be a short poem, video, something I’ve written or other creative efforts (sometimes a little DIY).
P: Who is the last person you called?
L: My bassist because we couldn’t find him. He vanished shortly before the gig. But thankfully, he turned up just in time.
P: Pizza or burgers?
L: I would look for someone to share both with.