Manor named London's 'Busker Queen'

As "Queen of the Underground," Manor wins a £5,000 prize as well the opportunity to perform a live gig on Capital 95.8.

Hadar Manor 88 (photo credit: Courtesy)
Hadar Manor 88
(photo credit: Courtesy)
An Israeli musician was named "Busker Queen of London's Underground" this weekend after being shortlisted as a finalist in a competition sponsored by local radio station Capital 95.8 FM. Hadar Manor, who has been based in London for five years, competed against 160 other buskers (otherwise known as street performers) nominated over a period of several weeks. Manor's fans turned out in droves to vote online for her acoustic folk sound with a Middle Eastern edge. As "Queen of the Underground," Manor wins a £5,000 prize as well the opportunity to perform a live gig on Capital 95.8. "The first thing I'm going to do with the money is throw a big party for all my fellow buskers and people who supported what I do all along," wrote Manor on her MySpace blog following her win. "The rest will go toward finishing my album which I've been working on for a couple of years." Manor adds that she doesn't believe there is simply one Queen or King of the underground. "We are all unique or special... without the buskers, who are the unsung heroes of London and part of the fabric of the city, we wouldn't have the magic of creating the soundtrack to the people who travel in this city." The 26-year-old, who has a Yemenite and Romanian background, served in the IDF as a paramedic before moving to London to make a name for herself in the music industry. She came to Britain without a plan and began to play in London's West End for spare change. When busking was legalized year later, Manor auditioned to receive a license. She was recently asked by the London municipality to help audition new talent for the underground. Manor also performs above ground in London's local night clubs and has been involved in various projects, including co-writing a song for the Oi Va Voi album, performing on the Jazz World stage in Glastonbury and collaborating with well known talents, like producer Youth and dance legend Sandy Rivera. Of course, she can also still be found between the Northern and Central lines. To find out more about Manor, visit her My Space page online.