Helene Richter (Germany) – voice & effects
Arno Bakker (Netherlands) – sousaphone
Jorrit Westerhof (Netherlands) – guitar & electronics
Gerri Jäger (Austria) – drums
HALA is a diverse, energetic and surprising musical madness based on the fairytale-like compositions of vocalist Helene Matthia, with Arno Bakker on sousaphone, Jorrit Westerhof on guitar and Gerri Jäger on drums.
The band was formed in 2017 in the basement of Atelier “Il sole in cantina”, Cantina Records in Groningen, which is known for its experimental journeys. They have released three EP’s: “Hala” (2018) and “Blueberry Ink” (2019) and “How Do You Do” (2022).
The music’s genre is various: from progressive rock, avant-pop and (free) improvisation to avant-garde, jazz and cabaret. You hear influences from artists such as Neneh Cherry, Nina Hagen and Acoustic Ladyland.
A few highlights of their performances were Jazzfestival Karlsruhe 2018 and ZomerJazzFietsTour 2019.
Thanks to the subsidy “Balkonscènes” from Fonds Podiumkunsten they had the chance to perform and record during the pandemic in May and November 2021.
In June 2022 Helene has been invited by jazzinternational Rotterdam to present HALA’s music at the new RAUW concert edition in Rotown (Rotterdam).
In July 2022 they’ve had a successful release tour of their new EP How Do You Do – to Germany, Austria and Slovenia.