African Music Culture

Israel Mbonyi Concert in Nairobi; Ticket Prices, Venue

Israel Mbonyi
Written by Teresa Mwangi

Celebrated Rwandan gospel artist Israel Mbonyi will finally perform in Kenya on August 10. The concert will go down at Ulinzi Sports Complex in Nairobi, finally honouring calls by his Kenyan fans to perform in the country.

He says that he is excited to visit Kenya where he has a huge base of fans supporting his ministry.

Is Israel Mbonyi Kenyan?

His mastery of Swahili leaves people thinking that he is a Kenyan but he is not. Israel Mbonyi is from Rwanda where Swahili is popular after French. He was born on May 20, 1992 and grew up in a Christian home which shaped his musical passion from a young age.

The 31-year-old ‘Nita Amini’ singer had a bigger dream in his life of pushing himself to the best he would. He loved books and medicine fascinated him a lot. While still singing in his church choir, he settled on pursuing pharmacy in India. He returned home and focused on music but still continued with his scholarly endeavours.

He also pursued a Master’s degree in Public Health years later noting that it is also a sector in health that he is interested in. However, his whole life since he left India is about music.

When Did He Start Singing?

The Rwandese started singing professionally in 2014 after years of practice at school and church. He credits his music teacher for instilling a sense of music in him back in junior school which he attended in Ruhangeri. One of the musical instruments that he loved most was the guitar which pushed him to compose songs later in life.

Israel Mbonyi

Rwandan gospel artist Israel Mbonyi. Photo/The New Times

Listening to him play the guitar is nostalgic. Then, in 2014, he released his first song ‘Number One.’ This single was well received and it set the stage for his debut album ‘Number One’ which he also released in 2014. The eight-track album had the following songs all in his native Kinyarwanda language.

  1. Hari impamvu
  2. Ku Migezi
  3. Ndanyuzwe
  4. Yankuyeho Urubanza
  5. Agasambi
  6. Number one
  7. Nzibyo Nibwira
  8. Ku Musaraba

In subsequent years, he focused on establishing a solid following in Rwanda and he released two more albums in Kinyarwanda. They include:

  • Intashyo
  • Mbwira (Live)

By the time he released his third album Mbwira, the rest of East Africa had joined the bandwagon but language barrier slowed things down. Aware of this, he released ‘Nina Siri’ in 2023 and it rocked East Africa. Most of the bloc – except Ethiopia – understands Swahili perfectly.

So great was his delivery of this gospel tune – perhaps his most famous yet – that people thought he was Kenyan or Tanzanian. Ever since ‘Nina Siri’ came out, his concerts across East Africa always fill to the brim. He released four other Swahili songs since his breakthrough in Africa. They are: ‘Nita Amini’, ‘Malengo ya Mungu’, and ‘Sikiliza’, ‘Jambo’ and ‘Malengo ya Mungu.’

How Much are Tickets to the Concert?

israel mbonyi

Rwandan gospel artist Israel Mbonyi. Photo/The New Times

Ticket prices for the gospel music concert graced by Israel Mbonyi range between Ksh3,000 and Ksh20,000. Here is a breakdown.

  • 1st Class VVIP – Ksh30,000 ($228)
  • VVIP – Ksh12,000 ($91)
  • VIP – Kh8,000 ($60)
  • Regular – Ksh3,000 ($22)

How Many Albums Does Mbonyi Have?

He has three albums released as of May 2024 but is gearing up for the release of his fourth album. The Rwandese alerted his fans on Instagram that he has another musical project set for release soon.  His relationship with God as he describes, helps him write songs that preach joy and restoration of hope to the downtrodden. The bible is always his biggest lead in his songwriting.

Speaking of the commercial motivation that is known to inspire some secular and gospel artists, Mbonyi reads from a different script. What matters most for him is preaching the gospel through music. Everything else that follows such as fame and commercial success is only a bonus for him.

Israel Mbonyi Wife

The pharmacist turned gospel musician is married. Not much is known about his family but his wife has tagged along in several concerts. It is likely that she will accompany him to Kenya for his much-anticipated show.

Award And Nominations

In 2017, he was recognized for his work in the gospel music industry with nominations and accolades. Among them is the Groove Awards Rwanda where he won in two categories; Male Artiste of the Year and Songwriter of the Year.

Addition, he was nominated for the 2020 African Entertainment Awards in the US. He later won the Best Gospel Artiste of the Year and Male Artiste of the Year in 2023 at the Isango Na Muzika Awards in Rwanda respectively.


He exudes an admirable demeanour with his humble nature and powerful vocals. His live performances are deep, emotive and incredibly blessing. Rwanda holds him in high regard as he preaches the word of God through music.

About the author

Teresa Mwangi

Teresa is a journalist with years of experience in creating web content. She is a wanderlust at heart, loves travelling and telling stories about tour and travel in Africa by every angle.

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