He is called Azerbaijani Robertino Loretti. A few years ago, the famous Italian tenor himself blessed the boy and prophesied a great future for him. Today Emin Eminzada is 19 years old and is in a hurry to achieve all his goals. "Music should be the language of the soul," the singer says. Only then will it reach the destination. Recently, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev issued an order on a special monthly scholarship for ten young musicians and performers. The list includes the name of Emin Eminzada. According to the presidential decree, the names of persons who have special talent in music will be included in the "Golden Book of Young Talents".
- Emin, congratulations on your special presidential scholarship. What feelings did you experience when you learned about this news?
- Incredible joy for the recognition of my talent. And pride for the fact that I achieved another success. I thank our president for highly appreciating my work and I promise that I'll continue to worthily represent Azerbaijan on the world stage.
- Did you always dream of becoming a musician? Or did you dream of sports as a child, like many boys?
- As far as I remember, I always wanted to be a musician. I started playing music at five years. My parents noticed that I froze in front of the TV when opera arias were played or ballet was shown. I even tried to sing the melodies I remembered. My mother persuaded dad to send me to the Bulbul music school. I passed five exams and enrolled in a violin class. But dad wanted me to be a doctor or a lawyer, and after two months of education in the music school, I was sent to a regular secondary school. But then they still enrolled me in Sharoyev children's music school №35, where I went with great pleasure and studied music. Then there was the Special Music School at the Cultural Centre of the Ministry of National Security in the piano class. At that time, I couldn't imagine my life without music.
I finished the last 12th grade in the United States. We, 30 Azerbaijani schoolchildren, got a chance to go to this country for a year on the FLEX educational exchange programme from the Azerbaijani Ministry of Education and the US State Department. So I ended up in the city of Marshall (Texas), where I lived in an ordinary American family and studied in an ordinary American school. I decided to spend this year, as they say, for my own benefit and for the benefit of my country. Each month, I organized various presentations, where I spoke about the history, culture and traditions of Azerbaijan. I arranged tasting of Azerbaijani dishes my American friends are very fond of. And, of course, I took part in all cultural events in the town: I performed in concerts and played in productions. For my activities, the leadership of Texas even granted me the status of honorary citizen. During my stay in the US, I got a chance to enter the famous American Musical and Dramatic Academy. I studied there for a year, and on my return home, I took a sabbatical, because here, in Baku, I entered the Uzeyir Hacibayov Azerbaijan State Music Academy. My teacher is People's Artist Fidan Qasimova. I'm very grateful to her for believing in me and helping me in my career. I think that for a young talent the main thing is to have a strong personality by his side, a teacher who will always give good advice and guide in the right direction. In this sense, I'm very lucky...
- How did they meet you in the United States? It's no secret that many musicians and artists are trying to conquer the "land of opportunity". Do you connect your further life with this country?
- America met me with a kind smile and good humour. The US is like another planet. Before that trip, I had time to visit many European countries with concerts and performances. And when I first came to America, the first thing I experienced was a "culture shock" from the overabundance of information, emotions and communication with people for whom individuality and freedom of expression are the first priority. They wondered who I am, where I come from and what I do. They wanted to know about Azerbaijan, because most of my new friends couldn't even find my homeland on the map. I never got tired of talking about Baku, its history and architecture, I showed pictures and sang songs ... I have the kindest and warmest memories of the United States. As for my future, next year I plan to continue my education in the United States. I'd like to live there for some time, learn singing and dramatics, and gain experience. Why not? This doesn't mean that I'll forget my homeland and my roots. I try to represent Azerbaijan with dignity and will continue to acquaint Americans with our culture and history.
- Emin, in addition to singing, you write music for your songs. Your composition Bubble Dreams aroused great interest in Europe and was presented on several well-known foreign radio stations.
- I wrote the lyrics for the song together with Fuad Alizada. The arrangement of the composition was made in New York by the well-known company Sinima Production, which worked with international stars such as Young Buck, David Faustino, Snoop Dogg, Bruno MARS and others. Bubble Dreams was also posted on the world-famous music video site VEVO, iTunes and Amazon Online stores. Even a channel was opened in my name on VEVO.
- Tell us about your victories in international competitions. Which of them is particularly important to you?
- It's difficult to answer this question. I think each of the victories is important and valuable for me. I try to set a goal and move towards it. Many people tell me that I'm a pretty single-minded guy... In 2012, I became the winner of the 8th International Song Contest Opus-2012, which was held in the Spanish town of Lloret de Mar (Catalonia). The competition was held among vocalists from 14 to 21 years old from 17 countries, and Azerbaijan was presented there for the first time. Then I became the winner among the 42 participants. A year later, I won the Golden Microphone international competition in Kazakhstan, which was organized by the Ministry of Culture of Kazakhstan with the support of UNESCO and other international organizations. I sang a song from the repertoire of the legendary singer and composer Muslim Maqomayev "Azerbaijan" and the song "Besame mucho". The competition was attended by representatives of 12 countries of the world. The jury consisted of experts from 10 countries, who unanimously gave me 10 points. I was awarded an honorary diploma and a valuable prize from the administration of the Kostanay region, where the contest took place.
- Tell us about your acquaintance with Robertino Loretti. Was it a fateful meeting for you?
- Yes. This happened in February 2011 during Robertino Loretti's solo concert in Baku. Half an hour before the concert, I was introduced to him. After listening, Loretti decided to include our number "O Sole Mio" in the programme. In addition to this composition, I also sang "Jamaica" and then, Robertino admitted that he saw himself in me as a child. He liked my presentation, called me to his master class and invited to take part in the popular song festival Elia Catalano, which takes place in Rome in the middle of summer. It was an honour for me. It was then that I realized that I made the right choice and am ready to dedicate my life to music. In July of the same year, together with dad, I went to Italy to visit Robertino Loretti. At the festival, I sang two songs - "Jamaica" and "O Sole Mio" - the ones that once made Loretti popular all over the world. So I became the winner of the Italian Elia Catalano Festival, where the renowned tenor announced that he will perform with me on the same stage and invited me to his anniversary concert in Moscow. He invited me officially, through the Ministry of Culture. In December, we sang together in the Chamber Hall of the International House of Music. So began our friendship. We still talk on the phone and socialize...
- Emin, you are getting classical music education. What kind of music do you like to listen to at your leisure?
- I like to listen to any music. The main criterion is that it must be of high quality. I like Muslum Maqomayev and Rasid Behbudov. I like their voices, manners of performance ... I also listen with pleasure to Michael Jackson, Freddie Mercury, Vaqif Mustafazafa, Andrea Bocelli, Adele and Celine Dion. I believe that music should be the language of the soul. It must be a melody - beautiful, strong, sensual and emotional. That's why I don't understand and don't accept hard rock. There is no melody and harmony in it. Complete chaos and mess.
- You are recording your first solo album. What will it be?
- Yes, I'm working on a new mini-album, which will include at least four pop ballads. I've written all the songs myself. You may ask why pop ballads, not opera arias and classical? I just wanted to show myself from another side, the way the audience doesn't know me well enough. I hope people like my songs.
- Share your plans for the future?
- I'd like to continue my studies in the US and here in the Music Academy. I also plan to get a second degree in business management. A second profession will help me to plan and coordinate my musical activities and establish working relationships. My nearest plans include a trip to the Netherlands and Italy, from where I recently received invitations to participate in concerts and festivals. So I have plenty of plans...