Anabela Bukva was born in Goražde, SR Bosnia and Herzegovina, SFR Yugoslavia to a Bosnian Muslim father Ahmed Bukva and Bosnian Serb mother Jadranka Polutak. As a child from a mixed marriage, instead of opting for a religiously-exclusive name, her parents decided to give her an "international name" so she would not be associated either as being Muslim or Serb. Her mother chose the name Anabela, either after a character from an Italian novel or after an Italian writer. Her parents filed for divorce when she was three or four years old. The divorce was finalized when she began first grade of primary school. It was initially argued in court that Anabela would live with her father because her mother did not have the financial capabilities to care for Anabela. The court did not favor this opinion, but could not make a decision. Instead, the matter was given to Anabela to decide with whom she would live after the divorce. Because of a strong connection with her father, Anabela chose to remain with her father. Anabela describes herself and her father as being a "dream team"; they were inseparable. She was immersed in music from an early age. Her father would play the guitar for her, and the two would often sing duets together.
She grew up with her father's two half-brothers from her paternal grandfather's second marriage. The older half-brother is four years older than Anabela, and the younger Anabela's age. Because they were all close in age, Anabela viewed them as her brothers. She was a self-described tomboy, and practiced karate. She finished her primary education in Goražde, and decided to relocate to Sarajevo at the age of 13 for secondary education in foreign languages. She lived in Sarajevo for two years, having moved between thirteen apartments during her short stay. She has two paternal half-sisters, Ilda and Aida (born 1985), who is an actress.
During winter break in late 1990, Anabela left Bosnia for Switzerland with her boyfriend, Nikola. Shortly after they left, their home country Yugoslavia began breaking up and several wars started, including one in Bosnia. Nikola returned to Bosnia, as his parents had been left behind. He became one of the first victims of the war. Anabela remained in Switzerland for a short period, and could not return to Bosnia because of border closures. She had no family in Switzerland nor contact with family in Bosnia, so she decided to relocate to Belgrade.
Looking for a normal life, she gained some footing in Belgrade through the help of Nikola's family. A refugee from Croatia hired Anabela to work as a secretary in his office. After seeing a commercial advertising the opening of the Đogani Dance School, she decided to sign up for dance classes. Gazmen "Gagi" Đogani, a dance instructor at the Đogani Dance School, was attracted to Anabela and immediately offered to take her on a date. Anabela describes the relationship as an instant love. The duo spent hours choreographing dances to Western songs by popular artists such as Bobby Brown, Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston.
Gagi decided to create an all-girl music group in 1993. The duo split, both professionally and privately, in 2009. Anabela continued her career as a solo singer. Montenegrin singer Nenad Knežević Knez and Serbian rapper Milan 011 wrote a song for the group, called Samo u snu (Only In Dreams). Knez questioned Gagi's choice of having many different girls performing in the group, instead opting to have just Anabela perform. Gagi agreed on a whim and asked Anabela to join his group, Funky G. Although liking the idea, she was reluctant to do it. The duo eventually recorded a video to the song Samo u snu. Anabela did not provide the vocals to the song, instead they were provided by a woman named Tamara, who gained no credit for the work. In the meantime, Anabela discovered her mother had escaped Bosnia and relocated to Sweden. Having received an invitation to come, Anabela decided to move to Sweden to live with her mother. She gained refugee status in Sweden, and began attending school. In the meantime, Gagi replaced Anabela with another woman. Within a few months, Gagi began repeatedly calling Anabela during her stay in Sweden, informing her of the success of their single throughout the clubs in Serbia. Gagi begged Anabela to return to Serbia immediately to perform at a concert in the famed Sava Center. Anabela did not immediately believe Gagi, and remained skeptical. Gagi sent Anabela a banknote of 5,000 Deutsche Marks as proof that he was earning money on behalf of Anabela's work. Still unconvinced, Anabela, by chance, watched a report on CNN on the nightlife of Belgrade's youth during a time of economic sanctions. Many different discotheques were showcased in the report, and in several of them, Anabela heard the song she and Gagi had earlier made. Finally believing Gagi, she reluctantly agreed to come back despite having been awarded refugee status. Anabela was shocked by the celebrity status she had gained in Belgrade, the public having associated Funky G with Anabela. In an effort to appease fans, Anabela decided to attend vocal schooling to improve her singing ability and provide vocals in subsequent Funky G releases.
After the release of Funky G's second album in 1995, Anabela unexpectedly became pregnant. Gagi, after hearing the news, was indifferent about the pregnancy. However, after hearing the baby's heartbeat on the ultrasound, Gagi became excited about his first child. In preparation for the baby's delivery, Gagi and Anabela saved money to purchase an apartment of their own. Anabela gave birth to her daughter Luna in 1996. Anabela later miscarried twins, and had trouble getting pregnant thereafter. Anabela sought the help of fertility doctors, aiding her in becoming pregnant with her second daughter, Nina.
Marital problems between Anabela and Gagi became evident following Nina's birth in 2005. After a long period of instability in the relationship, the marriage ended in April 2009 and Anabela subsequently left Funky G to start a solo career. Anabela is currently married to a Bosnian Jewish businessman Andrej Atijas, 11 years her junior. Atijas lived in Serbia where he studied, and his mother lives in Pančevo. They have one daughter together, Blankica Atijas born 20 May 2013 in Sarajevo. After living in Sarajevo for a year, Anabela returned to live in Belgrade.
Anabela released her first solo album, Igra sudbine, on 21 July 2010 through City Records.
She has citizenship in both Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia.Igra sudbine (2010)