Miss Monique

Miss Monique gets candid about the war, summer gigs and upcoming releases: Exclusive

I didn’t foresee such quick success,” says Miss Monique in our latest Hot & Current interview.

Miss Monique is the stage name of Alesia Arkusha, an acclaimed and vibrant Ukrainian artist. It was through YouTube, with the ‘Mind Games‘ and ‘MiMo Weekly‘ podcasts that Miss Monique’s name proliferated. Today, she is among the fastest-rising stars in electronic music. Whether in the studio or behind the decks, there’s an engaging energy born of Miss Monique’s musical creativity that captivates. It’s this magic that has put her on the world’s biggest stages, on a journey that has a start date but no end date. She’s one of the brightest stars on the dance music scene today and that’s why we sat Miss Monique down in our hot seat for another Hot & Current. We Rave You wanted to know all about the Ukrainian artist and label boss’s summer, how she’s coping with the tragedy in her homeland and her future plans.


Hi Alesia and thank you for joining us on this Hot & Current. Your schedule for this summer is full and varied. Which event are you looking forward to the most?

This summer has been full of amazing events, I’m excited about all of them, but let me try to tell you about a few.

In June I played for the first time during Off Sonar at Brunch Barcelona. It was daytime set, but the energy of the crowd was unforgettable. In the same month, I returned to my South America tour, where people are always so open and warm. I love visiting countries like Argentina, Uruguay and Chile. I’m also back in Ibiza this summer, where I’ll be playing at David Guetta’s Future Rave parties, at Camelphat’s event at Pacha and with Ida Engberg and Franky Wah at Chinois. In August I’ll be playing at the legendary German club Watergate for the first time.

This summer has too many cool events, I wish I could tell you about every single one.

You have been to many different countries. Is there one that has particularly touched you?

It depends on which side it touched me. If we talk about parties, I love South American countries, for example. The energy and the mood of these people are unique. For me, it is always very pleasant to play there.

If we talk about countries for tourism, I would say that I am still exploring this world. Unfortunately, sometimes you only see countries from the car or hotel window.

It is inevitable to mention this. What was it like to keep working with a piece of your heart and mind in Ukraine?

I haven’t had serenity in my heart or head in over a year and a half. Every day, I see beautiful places, meet wonderful people, and play my sets at parties, but all the while, I have an open wound in my heart that reminds me of the war at home. I’m learning to control my emotions, but the pain that I feel for Ukrainians, for our Ukraine, hasn’t gone away.



Has public support been crucial?

I think so. I knew there were many kind people in our world, but when Russia attacked Ukraine, I got a lot of support, especially from my listeners. They are incredible and kind people.

I heard so many stories where people who had never met each other offered rooms in their houses and gave almost everything to help. The public support was of course enormously important.

Your weekly MiMo podcast is one of the ways you stay in touch with your followers. Podcasts are popular right now, but you started yours a long time ago. Where do you get the inspiration to keep going?

My answer is already in your question: listeners. My strongest inspiration comes from the people who listen to my podcasts and attend my events. I’m grateful for their support, and everything I’m doing is my way of saying thank you.

You’re based in Portugal now. What is it like to live in another country?

When I lived in Ukraine, I was always curious about how life was in Europe or America.

Portugal is an amazing country because of its wonderful people, stunning scenery, and delicious food. I adore this country, but I’ve realised that I love no other country as much as Ukraine. Of course, we had challenges, as do all countries, but I had never realised how many positive aspects Ukraine has.

The most difficult thing about living in Europe is probably documentation. Different language, different rules, so many things you have to do as a foreigner. In any case, I’m learning.

In May you released EP ‘Rebirth’ on your Siona Records. Did it really symbolise a rebirth? What is the symbolism behind this EP?

I had a moment in my life where I didn’t think about music, touring, or the usual stuff. This track was the first thing I finished after going through a rough patch. So, I believe at some point, this music represents my rebirth and the moment when I began to return to the things I love the most.

What IDs can we hope to see released this year? If you can reveal…

Two months ago I finished my remix for Armin Van Buuren, which will be released later this year. At the same time, we signed some more releases with Armada: our collaboration with my good friend Paul Thomas, and also another track called ‘Subterranea’, with the talented producer Avira and the incredible singer Luna. Another remix I just finished for Lufthaus is ‘Robbie Williams – Ringo’, which will hopefully be released this year as well.

Siona Records is among the 10 most sold and most streamed Melodic House & Techno labels on Beatport. Congratulations! It’s a fascinating path for such a young label. Describe this journey for us.

Of course, when we founded Siona Records three years ago, I didn’t foresee such quick success. Our journey was an exciting adventure. We signed excellent releases and opened so many talented acts. I believe Siona helped many artists in being heard by a large number of listeners and, at some time, in finding a new audience.

Events, releases… What do you have planned for Siona for the rest of the year?

We’ve signed a slew of fantastic releases in the last few months. They’ll all be out this Autumn.

We tested and gained experience with the events we initiated this year. It’s now on hold because we want to provide them with something fascinating and well-organized, which takes a lot of time and effort. Hopefully, this idea will be revived next year.


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