Originally from Bulgaria, but based in the UK for the past 15 years, ILONA has had a life that makes her unlike many others. With a rich blend of influences to draw on, combined with her passion for music and the ability to speak 4 languages, she is truly a unique and original performer. Discovered by songwriter/producer Tony Moore (Ex- Cutting Crew/ Iron Maiden) 5 years ago, ILONA has gone from performing her first ever solo gig of 1 song live to headlining festival stages and touring the UK and US, as well as reaching number 2 on the iTunes pop charts with ''Back to You'' single released in May 2014.
Since beginning her musical career, ILONA has already achieved an enormous amount. She’s won awards for video as well as live performance, she’s been a featured performer at SXSW (in Austin, Texas) and played shows in LA, New York, Nashville and across the US Eastern Seaboard as well as gigging through Europe and touring around the UK many times.
Along with her own headline shows, ILONA has also supported Passenger, John Illsley (Dire Straits), Jamie Lawson, Newton Faulkner, Gabriella Cilmi, Hudson Taylor, The Dunwells, Jillian Jensen (US American Idol), Adam Ant, Paul Rodgers, Willy Mason, Daniel Bedingfield, jammed with Ed Sheeran and even performed at The House of Commons. In 2015 ILONA was invited to play two very special shows at the American Embassy in London .“I was thrilled and honoured to do these amazing shows and be able to share my music with a little bit of the USA in London” said ILONA afterwards.
She played critically acclaimed shows as part of the C2C (country2country) festival at the legendary O2 in London as well as 3 stages at The Isle Of Wight Festival, Cornbury Festival, BST Hyde Park and put out a single called LOVE’S OUT THE WINDOW, that she recorded in Nashville and was added to playlists in the States and the UK. In November of 2016 she spent time in Nashville writing with Jodi Marr (Paloma Faith and Mika), Johnny Reid, Michael Logen (Kelly Clarkson) and Brent Maher ( Tina Turner, Kenny Rogers), and was invited to headline a sold-out Artist Spotlight Sunday at the iconic Bluebird Cafe. Following these successful dates ILONA was invited to join the SESAC family and is now represented by them as a songwriter in the US.
ILONA started 2017 with a mini residency at The Downtown Grand in Las Vegas, where the hotel described her as the best act they’d had in the venue and immediately wanted to book her back for later in the year. The Talent Buyer for the shows, Judy Alberti said "ILONA is a truly passionate performer with an original and genuinely evocative voice. Her mastery of the art of songwriting is world-class...." After several months of songwriting between London and Nashville she released her latest single, ''Safety Net'' in October 2017.
ILONA was recently invited to write the official single for Wembley to Soweto Charity, called ''Heroes in Disguise'', released in April 2018. She embarked on a second successful US summer tour featuring headline shows in NYC's Cutting Room and Nashville's sold-out Bluebird Cafe.
ILONA's Fragile Heart EP is on the international BRITISH AIRWAYS playlist since October 2018.
ILONA is currently working on her debut album.
Others have likened her voice to Shania Twain, Karen Carpenter, and even Sheryl Crow, but ILONA also has something very special all of her own. A unique tone, a natural sense of dynamics and the ability to sing a lyric, tell a story and make people know she means it.