Dana Marie, a singer/songwriter from Kitchener, Ontario CANADA, started singing at the tender age of two years old. It’s no wonder, really, as she was born into a very musical family of five children. Her dad’s side of the family was always involved in a traveling drum corp. called the “Dutch Boy Cadets” and she didn’t get her creative thinking from anywhere but her mother’s imaginative side of the family. Together, Dana Marie and her four other siblings would record themselves singing on video and even created the “Hoekstra Choir” on a cassette tape! Dana Marie was just three years old when she spoke on tape about Jesus and how much she loved him.
As she grow older, Dana Marie was always involved in various choirs, solos and school musicals, so it’s no surprise that when she graduated from High School she packed up her belongings and moved across the world to Sydney, Australia to attend a College and Church that leads the world in worship music, Hillsong Church and Hillsong International Leadership College.
Those two years inspired and molded Dana Marie in a way that only a loving God could ever achieve. He gave her massive dreams and a heart to change the world, one beloved soul at a time. Dana Marie learned ABOUT worship and to LOVE worship, both in a musical and practical way while writing songs, discovering more deeply who Jesus Christ truly is, and what her role on this earth looked like. She started to ask herself what Christianity looked like in a real and practical way, what true worship is, and how she can best be a vessel for Christ here on earth?
After receiving her Diploma of Ministry from Hillsong College, she really started to feel an aching in her soul to move back to Canada. She had initially planned to stay a few more years in Australia, learning and growing in God, so she was baffled when she realized God was telling her to move home! “The only thing you can do is ‘trust and obey.’ It’s so reassuring to know that it was the right time to come home as God had some big things in mind for me! I’m honestly so humbled at how God is using me at the moment and it’s my prayer that I will continue to remain faithful and obedient. I’m excited to see what’s next as I move forward in music ministry. You never know the lives that can be touched by a single smile, encouraging word, or a song written from an inspiration.”
In February of 2010 Dana Marie won the 2010 “Shining Star” vocal competition for the Christian radio station 94.3 Faith FM, and has since been doing music ministry in various settings, being humbled by the opportunities that God has provided.
Since releasing her first self-titled, full-length album in December of 2010, Dana Marie has been performing and leading worship is various settings and churches in both Canada and the USA. Such events include 100 Huntley Street, Kingdom Bound, Youth Retreats, Coffee Houses, Churches, and the Women’s Prison.
Recently, Dana Marie was nominated for the Modern Rock/Alternative Album of the Year for the 2011 GMA Covenant Awards Canada and won “Collaborative Song of the Year” at the 2012 GMA Covenant Awards Canada.
Dana Marie is currently recording her second album and has partnered with Compassion Canada.
“I feel blessed beyond measure. God is so good and I am so grateful for the opportunities and responsibilities that He has granted.”