Rona Nishliu

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Rona Nishliu
Rona Nishliu performing at a jazz concert in Pristina, Kosovo.
Background information
Born (1987-08-25) August 25, 1987 (age 31)
Titova Mitrovica, AP Kosovo and Metohija, SFR Yugoslavia (now Kosovo[a])
Genres Pop, jazz, soul
Occupation(s) Singer, songwriter, radio personality, philanthropist
Years active 2004 –present
Associated acts Vesa Luma, Teuta Kurti

Rona Nishliu (born August 25, 1987) is an Albanian Kosovar singer-songwriter.[1] She came to international prominence after representing Albania in the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan, where she placed fifth and achieved the best placement for Albania to date.[2][3]

Early life and career

2004-2012: Early life and beginnings

Rona Nishliu was raised in her birth town Mitrovica, but had to move with her family to Pristina at the age of thirteen due the political reasons in her hometown. In 2004 she entered "Ethet e së premtës mbrëma" (The excitement of Friday night) - a similar show to Idols. She successfully passed the first rounds and entered the live shows, where she finished Top 5. After the show, she worked on Radio Blue Sky in Prishtina as a presenter.[4]

In 2005, Rona teamed up with Vesa Luma and Teuta Kurti to enter the 43rd edition of Festivali i Këngës, for a chance to represent Albania in the 2005 Eurovision Song Contest with "Flakareshë". The trio were qualified for the final night held on December 18, 2005 but lost to Ledina Çelo who was declared the winner. The song was a Pop-Dance track, and even without winning the contest, became an instant hit on the radios.[5]

2012: Eurovision Song Contest

Nishliu represented Albania in the Eurovision Song Contest 2012 in Baku, Azerbaijan after winning the national selection on December 29, 2011 with the entry "Suus".[3][6] She is the first singer from Kosovo to represent Albania in the contest. Because of the Qafa e Vishës bus tragedy, RTSH deferred the first semifinal by more than two hours on May 22, resulting in low ratings during Nishliu's appearance.[7] It did not affect Nishliu's own participation in the contest, as she got second place in the semi-final and advanced to the finals. Albania used its jury votes to vote for the other 17 countries in the semifinal, and it used the jury votes again on May 26.[7] RTK also did not air highlights from the first semifinal due to the bus crash. She ended up winning fifth place in the final with 146 points - Albania's best result to date.[8]

She became an Albanian citizen on 12 January 2012.


Nishliu was committed to her humanitarian work immediately after Eurovision. She became a member of a project called "Bonu cool, mos bjer shpullë" (Be cool, don't slap!), a project who raises gender awareness. She released a song especially for this occasion called "Se vetëm zemra flet saktë" (Because only the heart speaks right) which speaks against adolescent gender violence, produced and penned by Rona herself.[9] The song is part of a wide public awareness campaign led by the Kosovo Gender Studies Centre. It was supported and financed by the European Union.[10]

On 18 September 2014, Rona Nishliu held a concert in Belgrade, Serbia to promote the Kosovar culture, part of the "Mirëdita, dobar dan" festival.[11][12] She received a standing ovation from the public.[13][14]

Public image

In Albania, Kosovo, Macedonia, and Montenegro, she is known as a pop singer/musician. The audience in Pristina and Tirana know her also as an experimental jazz singer. Her interpretation is characterized with nuances of soul music influences as well. Her vocal range and interpretative power are her strongest points.[citation needed]


Nishliu is depicted for her humanitarian spirit, taking part in numerous humanitarian concerts for the people in the need. While being a student, she organized few Humanitarian Concerts, including the one entitled to help displaced Kosovo Albanian families of Mitrovica living in poverty. In 2009 she took place as a guest lecturer in UNDP Kosovo's activity on Awareness Raising on the Importance of Volunteerism for the Youngsters in Vushtrri.[citation needed] She is an activist of the National Association of Autism in Kosovo, she is also a Chairperson of the Institute for Sustainability and Development of Youth in Kosovo.[citation needed]



  • "Flakaresha" (with Vesa Luma and Teuta Kurti)
  • "Të Lashë" (I left you)
  • "Shenja" (The sign)
  • "Eja" (Come)
  • "Veriu" (The North)
  • "A ka arsye (Ft. Bim Bimma)" (Is there any reason?)
  • "Shko pastro pas saj" (Go after her)
  • "Zonja Vdekje" (Mrs. Death)
  • "Suus"
  • "Se Vetëm Zemra Flet Saktë" (Because the heart speaks right)

External links


a.   ^ Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the Republic of Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the Brussels Agreement. Kosovo has been recognised as an independent state by 108 out of 193 United Nations member states.


  1. DEKRET PËR DHËNIE TË SHTETËSISË SHQIPTARE NR. 7226 "President of Albania" Check |url= value (help). Retrieved 2012-08-24.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>[dead link]
  2. "ESC 2012 Final Results". Retrieved 17 September 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. 3.0 3.1 [1][dead link]
  4. Radio Blue Sky
  5. "Vesa Luma, Teuta Kurti & Rona Nishliu - Flakareshë, 18 December 2005, Festivali i Këngës - RTSH". YouTube. Retrieved 17 September 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  6. "Rona Nishliu - Suus (Albania 2012) - Participant Profile - Eurovision Song Contest". Retrieved 17 September 2014.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  7. 7.0 7.1 "Albania to broadcast tonight's Semi-Final deferred | News | Eurovision Song Contest - Baku 2012". Retrieved 2012-08-24.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  8. "Eurovision Song Contest 2012 Grand Final | Year page | Eurovision Song Contest - Baku 2012". Retrieved 2012-08-24.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  9. Nuhiu, Rinor. "Rona Nishliu releases a new single!". Archived from the original on October 5, 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  10. Sahiti, Gafurr. "Rona Nishliu releases new music video". ESCToday.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  11. "Festival "Mirdita - Dobar dan": Dijalog kroz umetnost (Serbian)".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Zëri i Rona Nishliut jehon në Beograd për një botë pa paragjykime".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "Feature: Kosovo singer makes breakthrough with performance in Belgrade".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Express 25.09.2014 - Miredita, Dobar Dan!".<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Aurela Gaçe
with Feel the Passion
Albania in the Eurovision Song Contest
Succeeded by
Adrian Lulgjuraj and Bledar Sejko with Identitet