Our 2017 National Carnival Queen, Chancy Fontenelle, represented Saint Lucia at the recently held ‘Jaycees’ Pageant. Below Chancy tells us all about her ‘Jaycees’ experience and (on page 18) she tells us about her debut single ‘Come Close’.
YO: Tell us a bit about the Miss Jaycees pageant.
Chancy: Miss Jaycees is a Caribbean pageant held in Antigua by an organization called JCI. Antigua then becomes host to several other islands as they prepare to compete. Because Antigua and Barbuda’s Carnival is days away, the JCI committee uses that opportunity to engage the contestants in various activities leading up to the pageant.
YO: Describe your Jaycees experience.
Chancy: It is said that your experiences shape you. This experience will absolutely be one that I have learned from and it definitely is one to help me grow. When growth is something that you can take out of something then you know that it is all for the best, no matter the outcome. There was excitement as well because I was so eager to learn, not only about Antigua, but also the other six competing islands (St. Kitts, St. Vincent, Antigua, Trinidad, USA and Barbados.)
YO: Whatwas the highlight of the event for you?
Chancy: What’s better than realizing how much your island’s music is being promoted in another country? This was a proud moment for me. Antiguans love St. Lucian music and it showed. T-shirt Mas is an event the day before the show and it was basically a parade behind trucks which is like a carnival, but with t-shirts. At this event, St. Lucian music played in abundance. I was excited to see that the hard work of our local artistes paid off. This means that our culture and our style is growing and expanding for the better.
YO: Is this the end of the pageantry journey for you?
Chancy: Even though I have indicated to many in the past that I would not want to continue after Jaycees, it is quite unclear for me if I will stick to that route. Pageantry presents you with so many opportunities and it is a good forum where you can enhance yourself afterall,therefore I will always be reminded of the positive impact it has on a young woman.
YO: What’s next for Chancy?
Chancy: Furthering my education. Upon applying for a scholarship earlier in the year, I was successful and was awarded a scholarship to study in Cuba. It was a sigh of relief for me after getting that acceptance call knowing this is my third year applying for a government scholarship. Architecture is my passion so this is more than likely what I will pursue.
YO: You released your debut single ‘Come Close’ recently. Tell us about the single and what inspired it?
Chancy: I released ‘Come Close’ a few months ago. The genre is Dancehallmixed with Tropical House. Doing this song was taking my first step into the music world and I understand that anything can happen from there in terms of my career. ‘Come Close’ came about because firstly, I wanted my first single to be an upbeat, catchy one with Caribbean vibes,because this is where I am from. Also, being the daughter of a calypsonian, “Tricky”, I figured that it was time to experience what he does.
YO: What has the response been like so far?
Chancy: I am happy to say that pageantry had already given me a following and so the response to the song was better than expected. It was well received and the listeners enjoyed it. My first time performing ‘Come Close’ live was on the night of the 2018 National Carnival Queen Show in the Opening Number for the Carnival Queen contestants.
YO: Do you plan on releasing a music video?
Chancy: Yes, a music video is going to bring out the story and I am in full favour of making this the next project.
YO: Can we expect a follow up single sometime soon?
Chancy: Well I do love music and ‘Come Close’ has paved the way for me with good feedback. Releasing ‘Come Close’ the way I did was a learning experience and I now know what I can do better and what I can do differently to produce better music; my next single should definitely be something showcasing my progress as an artiste.
YO: Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Chancy: I love that I was able to share who I am with my country and I would like to thank you all for receiving me that way and for the undying support. I will not stop what I do no matter the obstacle. I would like to urge young persons to pray and to seek guidance from God. There will be disappointments and failures but this is His path for you and all you have to do is trust Him becauseeventually you will see the big reveal in all of this.
Thank you to everyone who gave 150% and invested their time and sleep in me. Nothing can go unappreciated.