Nikiema Wendtoin Ezchial, who goes by the artist name Ezé Wendtoin, is a musician from Burkina Faso in West Africa. Since 2015 he has been living in Germany studying for his Master in German Studies at the Technical University in Dresden, Germany. Born in 1991 in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, he first came in touch with the German language in school. In 2013, he first came to Dresden and participated in the “Bunte Republik Neustadt”, a local district festival. His studies, music, workshops, and theater make up his busy everyday life. Often, he says, he has to write his songs, sitting in the tram going from one place to another.
Since 2015 he is a member of the local musician collective Banda Internationale, with whom he shares the same musical, cultural and political goals. Ezé Wendtoin has dedicated his work as a musician to increase understanding of different cultures in Germany. As a solo artist and together with the Dresden musician collective “Banda Internationale” he has stood against racism and xenophobia through music in concerts, theater, social projects, and in his work as an educator and scholar of German Second Language Acquisition through music.
Ezé’s dedication to his community and work in Dresden is honorable. He contributed his music to the play “Wahlokratie” [electocratie] at the Staatsschauspielhaus Dresden, and in “Der Junge mit dem Koffer” [the boy with the suitcase] for the Theater Junge Generation Dresden; he participated in the “No Stress Tour”, a tour organized by musicians in Germany to ease stress-levels of refugees in accommodation facilities and camps; he has played over 40 concerts as a member of the “Banda Internationale” against xenophobia and racism, which included collaborations with widely acclaimed artists like Konstantin Wecker, Sting, Smudo, BAP, and Jan Vogler; together with the band he won the BKM-Preis by cultural minister Monika Grútters, was recognized by Sächsischen Förderpreis für Demokratie [Saxonian Price for Democracy], the Sächsischen Preis für Soziokulturelles Engagement [Saxonian Price for Social and Cultural Engagement], the German Award for World Music, the TFF Ruth for Social Engagement, and the band was singled out as Ausgezeichneter Ort [exceptional place] in Deutschland, Land der Ideen [land of ideas] by the Deutsche Bank. Recently the band also won the “Power of the Arts” Award by the Philip Moris foundation; he has been active as a PASCH-mentor; he won the Afrika Sonderpreis” in a German national competition, which is sponsored by the German Ministry of Development, as a representative for the music contributions of Africans in Germany.
Ezé is a committed cultural and educational ambassador. As part of the “Bildung trifft Entwicklung” [Education meets Development] initiative, Ezé leads workshops in early childhood education facilities and schools where he engages German students with African culture and values. His workshops are centered around working with fairy tales, dance and music in which he actively involves his participants as makers. He combines music and narration. Besides his enthusiastic personality, he uses traditional instruments from Burkina Faso to engage learners in his stories about the everyday life in Burkina Faso.
Parallel to his efforts in Germany, Ezé is currently working on realizing the educational and cultural facility “Fondation Warc-enciel” in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. With this facility, Ezé wants to increase access to art, crafts, and education for the local youth population, who are educationally and economically disadvantaged.
His recent music video “Dresden, daheeme” (2017) (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ohz3Avwin9k) , he deals with his love for the city of Dresden, Germany. The lyrics tell of Ezé’s experiences living in Dresden, where he is often confronted with negative comments or long stares because of his skin color. This is part of his life, however, he says that with love as his weapon, he hopes to break down the hatred with which he is faced.
Links to his website and Facebook profile: