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Fouzia Ouihya
Stories of inspiration from Smart Girl Stories across the globe. Fouzia – Moroccan/Canadian Singer and Songwriter

Fouzia – Moroccan/Canadian Singer and Songwriter

Fouzia Ouihya, a 23-year-old Moroccan-born Canadian pop singer and songwriter, gained prominence with her hit single “Tears of Gold” in 2020. Born on July 5th, 2000, Fouzia is one of three daughters born to parents who relocated to Canada, along with their children, in 2001.

Fluent in Arabic, English, and French, Fouzia is renowned for her success in pop, synthpop, and R&B singles. Possessing an impressive vocal range and crafting evocative lyrics, Fouzia became recognized for her Arabic and Middle Eastern vocalization, even though her initial intention was to present herself as a conventional artist.

Establishing herself as a pop musician at the young age of 15, Fouzia gained recognition for her powerful vocal range and poignant love songs. Like many stories, Fouzia’s narrative begins with immigration.

From Immigration to Pop Stardom

Shortly after Fouzia Ouihya’s birth, her family moved from Morocco to Winnipeg, where Fouzia grappled with the challenges of being an Arab immigrant in a small French town in Canada. Reflecting on her experiences, she shared, “When you’re a kid, you start to feel like…should I be embarrassed by my background? But later, I realized that being unique is an advantage.”

While small towns can offer tranquility and natural beauty, they can also induce feelings of isolation. As Fouzia notes, the sensation of being the sole Arab and Muslim in a small town north of Winnipeg could be overwhelming.

But she found her way to self-expression through the support and encouragement of her family. While she was still in high school, Fouzia’s parents set up an impromptu sound studio in her basement. This enabled her to experiment with music and share her creations with the world.

With her family’s unwavering support, Fouzia resisted the pressure to conform and instead chose to draw inspiration from her Arabic roots, leading to her winning her first major award in 2015. At the 2015 La Chicane Électrique in Quebec, she secured the titles of Song of the Year, Audience Award, and Grand Prix. As of 2023, Fouzia’s music has amassed 3.8 million streams on Spotify, and her audience spans North America, the Middle East, and East Asia.

Fouzia Ouihya – A Vocal Powerhouse

Blending Western and Middle Eastern influences into super popular music centered around themes of love and heartbreak, Fouzia’s albums resonate worldwide. Fans are struck by the singer’s emotive lyrics and captivating rhythms. As the first Muslim woman pop star based in a Western country, Fouzia’s success undoubtedly contributes to improved representation.

During a recent “Ask Me Anything” session on YouTube, she discussed her work and its impact, expressing, “One of my favorite things to do is sit down and read comments on YouTube because it’s usually on that platform where people express their feelings/experiences. Reading about what everyone has gone through and seeing how they connect with the song is so special. This is why I love music so much. We’re all living different lives, but we can listen to one song and connect through it.”

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