Quanteisha is a Juno award winning, Edmonton-based singer and also a first-year Faculty of Arts student. We recently asked Quanteisha to tell us about her recent Juno win and how she is enjoying her first year at the University of Alberta.
Why did you choose to attend the University of Alberta and specifically the Faculty of Arts?
I chose the U of A because it is easily recognizable. I knew that I wanted to pursue music and at the same time have an education to fall back on, therefore if I had to transfer to say, University of Toronto it shouldn’t be hard. I was told that the U of A is a highly respected university in Canada.
I chose the Faculty of Arts because from there I can study whatever I want to. I was thinking to go into law after getting my arts degree, but just in case I changed my mind I wanted to stick with something that I actually liked. I love literature and poetry.
Do you have a favorite class and/or professor? Why?
My favorite class is English. As for professors- that’s a good question. I’m going to have to say that my two favorite professors this year would be Stephanie Hayman who teaches Criminology and Daniel Fried who teaches Comparative Literature. They were both very accommodating and understanding with due dates and deadlines, as I had to travel a lot for various events- one of them being the JUNOs!
Do you have a favorite place on campus?
My favorite place on Campus is probably the lounges in HUB. I can study there, chat with a classmate if I wanted, or eat. Subway and Cookies by George are nice and close and I always make trips there on my way up to the lounge. So the food is definitely a plus!
How do you balance your music career with your studies?
It’s not easy, I can tell you that much. I don’t know how I do it- I think communication with my professors has been a key factor in keeping up in class. The professors I mentioned, for instance, have been so accommodating and have helped me out a lot.
Can you tell me a little bit about your Juno win for Best R&B/Soul recording? Did you attend the ceremonies?
It’s actually really funny. I wasn’t expecting to win and I was at the gala the night before the actual JUNOs and that’s typically where everyone finds out the majority of the winners. I was eating mashed potatoes and had them in my mouth as they announced my category. When they announced my name I was SO shocked so I swallowed quickly and made my way to the stage. The first thing out of my mouth when I started to say my speech was, “Wow! I’m so shocked… I didn’t even have time to ask my mom if there was anything in my teeth!” Thankfully there wasn’t! I heard laughing so I didn’t feel as nervous and then at the end of my speech I said, “Just putting this out there... I’m still looking for management and a label. So if you’re interested-Call me!” People were still laughing as I left the stage so I felt good about the impression I made!
What does winning the Juno mean for your career?
Winning the Juno has opened up a lot of opportunities for me that wouldn’t have been available to me before. I’m really excited and a few new offers have come out of the works for me so in the future hopefully I’ll be able to announce more.
Now that you are a Juno winning artist, do you plan to continue your university studies?
I do. I think education is extremely important in whatever you’re doing. Especially music because anything can happen and I think it’s important that I have something to fall back on.
Do you have any advice for high school students considering post-secondary education?
Since this isn’t an essay and I’m not being graded on this- I’m going to stick with the cliché approach… STAY IN SCHOOL!
Do you have a website/Facebook/Twitter/Myspace links that we can follow your career?
Quanteisha’s latest singles include “Anything Can Happen” and “Good Girl Code”. Also look for her single, “Get Loose” which is scheduled to appear on NBC to promote the TV show, “Real Housewives of New Jersey”.