We had the good fortune of connecting with Monique Denise and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Monique Denise, do you have a favorite quote or affirmation?
My new life motto is “Now or Never, Living life to the fullest”. I’ve been singing all my life but decided to pursue a professional singing career in 2017. I began to look at my kids and realize I couldn’t teach them or encourage them to chase after their dreams if I wasn’t. In July of 2017 I was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer and experienced some of the most devastating things in my life that year. I went through the most aggressive form of chemo and experience pain and sickness that I would never wish on anyone. In 2018 I went into remission and took off running with my musical career. I began preforming as a regular at a local restaurant, getting booked for weddings, parties and other exciting events including performing twice at the Apollo in New York City which was a dream come true. I began to flourish and then in 2020 the cancer struck again. I was now diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. I have held on to a statement my doctor said to me when I was first diagnosed which was it is not that disease that kills people but their attitude towards it. From that day forward my mindset changed and thus birth my motto. I believe if I could overcome a obstacle so big then nothing else could stop me. I believe that I have a story to share with so many and a song to sing to help others through whatever they are facing. I don’t believe in coincidences. I believe everything happens for a reason.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a singer/performer first as well as a motivational speaker. I love what I do with a passion and my goal every time I step on a stage is to touch someone and give them an experience. I want to make them smile and leave with a lasting impression. I love to be personable with my audience and make them apart of my show. I get on the stage and try to let people know me. I like to be silly, have fun and goofy and i try to show that in all my shows. I try to make everyone comfortable and I celebrate with them. My success and comfort didn’t just happen. I still to this day get nervous before I perform and it took me a minute to “own” the stage. Most times my issues come from being in my head and getting in my way wondering will they like me, will my voice crack, will I remember my words, how can I engage them if they are looking bored. So many thoughts run through my head but once I tap into my passion for it and relax and be myself then the show is on. Yes I mess up from time to time but I don’t try to hide it. I’m human and it’s ok to make mistakes from time to time. The lessons I’ve learn is that no matter what be yourself, unapologetically you then at least when it’s done you will be happy with yourself. I’m here to share not take, join, work with and grow together. I want to create an experience for everyone and a place of excitement, love and satisfaction.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well if my friend was coming to visit me in Jacksonville I would start with Brunch at a nice spot in avondale then find a nice day party to relax and list to some music. I would definitely include a beach day at one of the more secluded spots or Hugenot Park. Book a boat for the day go sailing with friends. Spend one night for dinner at River and Post on the rooftop with live music. A day in St Augustine shopping, checking out the winery and distillery and then PK for live music. A Spa day at One Ocean or Ponte Vedra spa and dinner at Capital Grille. A nature hike at one of the national parks and have a nice picnic and relax.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My kids are my biggest motivators. I fight because of them so that I can try to provide them with a lifestyle they deserve. I also owe it to my father, mother and friends who have believed in me and supported my from day one. If it weren’t for my amazing doctors at Baptist and MD Anderson who have and continue to take amazing care of me. I wouldn’t be here today to share this story if it had not been for my care team. Last but not least my amazing band that supports me and tries to make my dream a reality. I love you guys!
Other: Linktree: https://linktr.ee/MoniqueDenise
PRI, Tonya Austin, Jared Hen