Mon 31 Oct 2022

Interview with…Sian Eleri


BBC Radio 1 presenter, Sian Eleri, is known for hosting Radio 1’s ‘Chillest Show’ every Sunday 7-9pm alongside Radio 1’s ‘Power Down Playlist’ every Monday to Wednesday from 10pm. Sian’s passion for sharing music has guided her to beginning TONNA’, an event hosted by Sian, showcasing three selected artists. Sian’s first TONNA’ event took place in May 2022, and the second is set to take place this week on Friday 4th November. We spoke to Sian Eleri to learn more about TONNA’…

What made you want to begin TONNA’?
Ever since going to my first gig (without my parents!) I dreamt of putting on nights of my own. That electric atmosphere, regardless of how upbeat the music, was a beautiful energy I wanted to recreate. That idea of strangers all coming together, connecting with each other, bonding over their love for an artist – it’s a really special thing. TONNA’s aim of holding intimate nights really brings you up close and personal with the artists you love, and hopefully we all walk – or dance – away from the night glowing.

This is your second TONNA’ event, what was the feedback like from the first gig? Was there any stand out moments for you?
The bar afterwards was buzzing! I was super chuffed with the line-up – from being able to hear a pin drop during Lucy Blue’s delicate set, to a beaming Jordan Stephens throwing various fake fruit signed with affirmations into the crowd. I’ll remember that night forever, it was class.

Is the event genre-specific?
Na – similar to my shows on Radio 1, nothing’s off-limits. The beauty of mellow music is there’s always something for everyone, the only condition is: it’s gotta make you feel good. So far, we’ve got alt-soul, super soft pop, indie, R&B, folk, and ones that blur those lines. The plan is to have a dance-leaning special at some point too. Watch this space.

How would you describe the atmosphere to someone who has never attended a TONNA’ event?
Like a warm hazy sanctuary.

You have some incredible artists performing in the upcoming event, Rachel Chinouriri, Mychelle and Terra Kin, how do the artists get selected?
It starts as a dream list of artists, before selecting complimentary voices that all bring their own unique qualities and styles. I feel so lucky to showcase these three as part of TONNA’ this time. They’re very near and dear to my heart, so when they confirmed I felt so giddy! Last time I saw Rachel live I cried, so if you want to see me all misty-eyed, come down!

How would you like to see TONNA’ develop in the future?
I’d love to tour the show – growing up away from city life, supporting local live music scenes is super important. Having a festival stage would also be ace down the line. And hey, who knows, a whole festival of its own one day! Dare to dream!

Friday 4th November 2022 – Omeara, London

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