Singer Ntjam Rosie (28) moved to Rotterdam as a student. Eventually, she grew very fond of this weird city.
“I was born in Cameroon. When I was 9 years old I moved to Maastricht. Because of all the compliments, I became aware that I was a good singer. I had not realised this before because in Cameroon everybody always sings, haha! When I was older, I wanted to study at the conservatory. In Amsterdam or Rotterdam? I opted for the latter. I have lived here since 2002. I felt deeply attracted to the city, although it was quite difficult at the beginning. In Limburg everybody says hello to each other, but here it felt cold and distant.
Eventually I got to know the city as a girlfriend. I know when she’s at her best, and when she’s not in a good mood. I feel comfortable with her now. I’m here to stay! The village feeling in a metropolis: that’s what makes Rotterdam unique to me. In terms of music, I sometimes feel that the city doesn’t have enough to offer. There is Rotown, Bird and LantarenVenster of course, but you really need to know your way around and know what is happening. Having said that, when something is good it is really great. Probably because we are less spoilt.
Last year I performed at North Sea Jazz: heavily pregnant on my favourite stage. It was so cool and also emotional to be there with my band. A crown on my work; that’s for sure. In my own city, how exciting: to be part of this large international music festival in my own backyard.”