Five Questions With Tonia Evans Cianciulli

Award-winning Canadian soprano, singer-songwriter, and author Tonia Evans Cianciulli has released a poignant and beautiful song for the holiday season in this, “Christmas Time This Year”.

“Christmas 2020 will be a challenging one for the entire world,” Cianciulli considers. “If we can’t be with our families in person, I pray we can be together in spirit and music.

“With that in mind, I hope this song will weave its way through your heart.”

“Christmas Time This Year” is the latest creation from the multi-faceted artist, and lands ahead of her forthcoming album set for release this Spring, 2021.

Currently based in both Toronto and Miami, the new release of all-original music will highlight matters of the heart while further heralding her heart’s true home of Newfoundland. To that, “Christmas Time This Year” enjoys two versions of its lyrics, with alternate words fitting for other locations.

“Even though I’m completing an album for a springtime release, I felt moved to write and release this song for Christmas,” she shares of the song and its especially meaningful lyrics. “I co-wrote these lyrics with my dear friend Vaughn Harbin; I wanted to mark what will be and is a very different time for everyone.”

Check out “Christmas Time This Year, For Newfoundland” below, and find out more about Tonia via our holiday-themed Five Questions With segment.

Care to introduce yourself to our readers?

Hey Canadian Beats! I’m a Newfoundland born, singer-songwriter and author of the award-winning book, ‘The Heart’s Obsession – An Intimate Biography of Newfoundland Songstress Georgina Stirling’. I’m a mom of two awesome kids, I’ve been homeschooling them for SEVEN years now! I was originally trained in opera but I sing and write any genre of music that tugs on my heart-strings!

Tell us a bit about your music and writing style with the song.

This new Christmas song was originally written in dedication to the special isle where my heart lives, my first home, Newfoundland (with a second version recorded for the rest of the world 😉 With a focus on my roots the past several years, my heart’s been drawn back home, reflecting a real East Coast vibe. You couldn’t get any different from the opera and classical I grew up training in, but it speaks to my heart, just the same. I wrote the lyrics with a Newfoundland friend and poet, Vaughn Harbin, to capture the true essence of what I wanted to share. My producer, Dima Graziani, guitarist, Jesse Fegelman and cellist, Erika Nielsen have been hugely instrumental in presenting the authentic and magical vibes. We always aim for a ‘hauntingly beautiful’ feeling.

How are you keeping creative without shows? What are you spending your time on?

Yes, this is a common question this year. It’s been a real grieving process, not being able to perform as usual. Last year was a whirlwind with a book tour and double album release. The momentum I created was halted so, I decided I was going to write and record more of my own music. It was an incredibly healing process and gave me a worthwhile project to pour my heart and creativity into. This resulted in an unexpected but very meaningful collection of music that addresses matters of the heart and home. I also provide one-on-one, self-development artist coaching and host an interview series with Canadian artists called Artist’s Spotlight.

Tell me about the holiday times growing up.

Holidays growing up were always a very magical time of year. Our parents went to great lengths to create traditions that I carry on with my own children now. Christmas and Home are more than events and places. They’re feelings that you can carry with you no matter where you are. Christmas is a time to give even more love and to be cozy and in gratitude of all that we have. Especially this 2020, the focus is on the blessings of special relationships, not accomplishments or presents.

Canadian Beats is all about Canadian music, so who are your current favourite Canadian bands/ artists?

Canada has been beyond blessed, specifically with phenomenally talented female artists. Some of my FAV are, Sarah McLauchlan, Ambre McLean, Leslie Feist, Chantal Kreviazuk. One male singer-songwriter who’s been of particular influence on me the past several years is Newfoundland’s, Ron Hynes. His songwriting and storytelling are profound. He’s been a huge influence on my next album that’s coming in 2021!

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