Fire & Gold
Elika's love of music began when she was a child growing up in Africa. Her music beautifully expresses the diverse cultures that have been a part of her upbringing. Elika considers herself a world citizen; her parents are from Iran, she was born in the US, raised in Kenya, and now lives in China. In between she has lived in Israel and Hong Kong. Her music blends and reflects the influences of this varied background, drawing upon classical Western structures but incorporating instrumentation from Iran to Ireland and China to Spain. She studied classical piano from the age of five, and it's influence can be heard in the stunning instrumental pieces that she began composing when she was in college. It was at the same time that Elika began singing and setting the Baha'i Writings to music. The enchanting "Melodies of the Nightingale" was produced at this time by Elika and two close friends, Michelle Brown and Fiona Doomun-Rouhani. This first CD was followed a few years later by a solo follow-up titled "Melodies of the Nightingale for the Family" produced by Paul Meredith. These two CDs have been sold in more than 25 countries and their stirring melodies and soaring harmonies have inspired people all over the world. Elika's most recent CD, 'Fire and Gold' blends eastern and western musical styles and features a number of languages including English, Spanish, Arabic and Chinese. The theme is the tests and difficulties of life, and the title comes from the Hidden Words of Baha'u'llah: 'Busy not thyself with this world, for with fire we test the gold and with gold we test our servants'. The music is diverse and reflects influences from around the world. In addition to Elika's piano performances, the songs also include a number of outstanding musicians on Celtic harp, Persian nay flute and santour, Spanish guitar,Chinese erhu, flute and cello. The result is a sophisticated, yet catchy fusion of progressive ideas with ancient, classic overtones layered with gorgeous melodies that has literally brought tears to many listeners. It truly eases the soul from the burdens of this earthly life and uplifts it with divine illuminations.