Mariska believes that music speaks to the heart in ways that words alone cannot. Incidentally, this is an accurate assessment of this newcomer’s striking first album, which will be released during the second half of 2018.
Dankie, the titular track and first single off the album, was written by Johan Oberholzer and has a catchy rhythm complemented by meaningful lyrics. It’s about being grateful to be alive. “Do we ever say thank you enough? I feel compelled to give thanks for so many things in my life. To God for making my dreams come true; to the people who listen to my music; and to everyone who has worked so hard to help me reach this point in my life,” says the singer. “The song comes from my heart. I count my blessings every day, because everything is grace.” The single will hit radio stations nationwide during the week of 14 May 2018 and a music video is also on the cards for this beautiful song.
Mariska grew up on a farm just outside Hoedspruit and has been intoxicated by classical music from the age of five. She started taking singing lessons in grade 1, after which she also quickly mastered instruments such as the piano, violin and keyboard, for which she raked in a string of awards at the Eisteddfod in her matric year. At the age of seventeen, she released her own demo album, Optelmeisiekind, which consisted of 36 tracks in Afrikaans and English. This led to the release of two music videos in 2011, Reënboog Hart and Alles Vir Liefde – a duet with Rian Ungerer – which was chosen to represent Africa at the Eurovision music video contest. The track is also included in Select Music’s album and DVD compilation, Ons Sing Duet.
Soet Soos Suiker, her first official single, was very well received and is still being played on the radio. The underwater scenes in the music video, produced by Hartiwood Films (Liefling – Die Movie, Pretville), attracted a lot of attention and secured her a spot on the music programme, DKNT.
During this time, she crossed paths with Rudi Claase, who not only helped her release an online album, A Tribute to Enya (2016), but who also wrote the gospel song, Vrede, for her. This track will also appear on her new album and the music video has been viewed numerous times on YouTube. The star, who boasts musical training from The Campus of Performing Arts, loves performing at events and has been part of the Liggiefees, Hoedspruit Wildsfees and the Tierlantynkies Fees, to name a few.
When she is not performing, she is busy with her Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and reckons that she would consider a career in music therapy if she couldn’t sing. The artist is very religious and regards every step in her music career as a highlight. She attributes her personal music style to the influence of various country and pop artists, and she has great admiration for Juanita du Plessis, Corlia Botha, Nadine, Elandrè, Monique Steyn, ADAM and Joshua na die Reën.
The music industry has taught Mariska to work hard for what she wants, and to get up and dust herself off when things don’t go according to plan. She hopes to show people her true colours and abilities through her work. With her new album, this girl with her sugary sweet voice and fresh perspective, is well on her way to doing just that! Why? Because you simply can’t help noticing her enthralling voice when hearing her sing for the first time.
Her sugary sweet voice, passion for singing and soulful lyrics are the powerful ingredients behind her debut album, DANKIE, due for release soon. It will, no doubt, take pride of place on the shelves of music lovers everywhere.