Christiane Mikaela

Christiane Mikaela

Just a year ago, we were isolated in our houses with question marks about the new COVID-19 virus. With all events on hold, many were affected and that included many musicians and singer-songwriters like Christiane.

However, when resources are limited, creativity is born. Christiane launched an interesting customisable gift, GiftASong. We catch up with her discover her journey thus far.

Christiane wears our Daydream Top in sakura, size S with our Baby Blue Shades Skirt in taro, size S

Tell me what do you do!

I’m a singer, songwriter and vocal coach. I use to create experiences that you can keep forever, like GiftASong, vocal performance coaching, live music and songwriting experiences.

Christiane wears our So Good Shift Dress in kiwi, size S

How did you end up becoming a singer songwriter?

I’ve always loved to sing and I was actually a child performer! I started on the piano at the age of 3 and when I went for classes, my teacher told my mother that I would return the week after with my own songs instead of the ones taught to me.

I began writing music & performing when I was 5. It felt natural, like a God-given gift. I was part of numerous SSO Young Performers recitals. That was actually how I got my first newspaper feature in 1998, where they said I sang like a young Celine Dion.

Did you pursue music in your formal education?

Despite being scouted a few times, my family encouraged me to explore music as a passion rather than an examinable subject.

I ended up in some elite schools and over there, pursuing music was unheard of. It was seen as an embellishment to one’s resume. Eventually, I finished my education with an honours degree in psychology.

However, midway through university, I decided to give it a shot. I took a gap year to pursue music full-time. I performed at Esplanade, Singapore Night Festival, won a few songwriting competitions and rubbed shoulders with full-time creative professionals. 

Realising that real people could build their careers in the arts was what encouraged and emboldened me to eventually step out on my own.

 

What’s your music style like?

It’s an eclectic mix of soul, jazz, a bit of funk and folk. My trip to Africa also influenced my style.

Christiane wears our Chateau Sleeved Top in kiwi sky, size S with Valleys Flare Pants in kiwi sky, size S

What inspires the songs that you write?

Being a content creator is a huge responsibility & opportunity to influence & shape opinions. My initial inspiration comes from experiencing nature, relationships, life and God.

I’m very intentional about focusing on meaningful messages and healthy values. Even if you had a bad experience, you can still choose to write songs that encourage your listeners, using themes of hope and wisdom instead of negativity or anger.

For example, one of my songs is about OCD. I grew up watching a few family members struggle with it. This inspired me to write a song that captures the gravity of battling a disorder and how it can tear a family apart… But the overarching message is about not losing hope and looking to God for strength.

Another song is about dating someone way younger than me. Deep down, I knew that it was a bad idea, but I wanted to try it out anyway. Coming out of it, I was like, “just leave the Young Wild Things alone” - that’s the name of the song!

Which singers or songwriters do you admire?

Growing up, it was Christina Aguilera. Her voice is incredible, not just because she can do all those powerful vocal runs, but also because she is a master at manipulating her voice to bring out the emotions of what she’s singing. You can really feeeel it!!

 

I'm curious… Is it an end goal for every singer-songwriter to release an album?

It depends on the direction of your music journey. Some people are singer-songwriters all the way. An EP is not my end goal. I see it as a tool that I can use to inspire people on my own terms, whilst also doing something that I love. It’s a great way to showcase what I’m capable of as well!

Christiane wears our Sunlight Romper in Zucchini, size S

Beyond being a songwriter, I heard you also give vocal lessons? Who do you teach and why do you teach?

Yes! I teach adults & kids aged 5 & up. It’s not just vocal techniques, but also how to present yourself in front of an audience. I draw from my experience in music performance, song-writing & psychology to develop a holistic coaching strategy for every client.

My passion is to teach meaningful values & life skills using music & positive reinforcement. I want to give my clients & students space to explore, challenge themselves and teach them how to discern what kind of messages they’re exposing themselves to when they consume music & media. Most of the subliminal messaging nowadays is really unhealthy, not just for kids but also adults. 

Be Kind Small Drawstring bag in kiwi sky

While people gift chocolates or flowers, I heard you create songs as gifts! Can you tell me more about it?

Yes! My GiftASong experience is a unique & heartfelt gift for special occasions that helps express what words can’t convey. It’s more lasting than a bouquet. It has been a really popular gift for weddings, anniversaries, birthdays and even client appreciation.

I call it an experience because I can write your story into a song from scratch. I will coach you to sing it, after which you’ll come into my studio to get it recorded professionally, with the finished gift as a memory that you can cherish forever.

Also, at the end of it, your friends & family can all be involved when the song premieres on YouTube!


How has GiftASong been?

I’m very humbled that my GiftASong experience has been able to connect and inspire people not just in Singapore, but also overseas.

It helped unite families that were separated in different countries, spouses that could not be together, and even a group of friends, sending their parting wishes to someone right before she passed away.

Christiane wears our Kilby Girl Top in lavender, size S

Be Kind Medium Drawstring bag in sakura

Side note- I heard that you’re passionate about basketball too.

Yes! Amidst school and SSO recitals, I was scouted for basketball in primary school because of my height. I ended up playing it competitively for many years, representing my school and eventually Singapore for awhile.

Sports and music were outlets for my emotional catharsis.

 

Basketball and singing are very different things. How does one find a man who likes similar things?

Yes, my husband does!

We met at a wedding, where he was one of the best men while I was the wedding singer. After that, we ended up jamming together a lot. He played the electric guitar while I sang, so during rehearsals, we had to make constant eye contact. That sparked something off!

Interestingly, I wrote a list of 16 things I wanted in a man I married and my husband checked everything on the list. So basketball and music are not impossible combinations after all!

Christiane wears our Chateau Sleeved Top in kiwi sky, size S with Valleys Flare Pants in kiwi sky, size S

Lastly, I heard you have a nickname called ‘Lipstick’. Tell me more!

Actually, my band calls me that because I always turned up for rehearsals with many different shades of lipstick.

I have unusual colours along with the common ones like cherry red, indigo, dark blue and teal. I once wore black on a date and my husband was not pleased!

 

To find out more about Christiane, you can visit her website here or follow her on Facebook and Instagram