MNO Citizen to “Shine” at Virtual Indigenous Music Festival


For nearly all her life, MNO Citizen Leah Belle has been a performer. Her passion for singing and song-writing began early, and she was taking vocal lessons and performing at school recitals at the age of six.

Today Leah continues performing and creating music. Her talents have earned her national recognition, including the recent nomination for “Country Album of the Year” at the 2021 Summer Solstice Indigenous Music Awards (SSIMA) for her album, Shine.

Shine is Leah’s second album. Her first album Time for Some Country received similar attention when it was nominated for a CBC Indigenous Music Award in 2018, and her songs could be heard on the radio across Canada. Despite her previous successes, Leah confessed to be surprised when she heard of her SSIMA nomination.

“It’s always a surprise to know that your work has had this effect,” she says. “But, it’s an honour to be recognized, and I am just happy to have the opportunity to share my music and hope to continue to do so. I’m really looking forward to seeing the other performers this year, enjoying the music and celebrating Indigenous culture.”

Leah currently resides in Sudbury, ON where she serves as Youth Representative for the Sudbury Métis Council. She expresses her gratitude for the MNO and its role in her success and evolution as a musician.

“I have to thank the MNO who has supported me through the production of both my albums,” says Leah. “Without their help it wouldn’t have been possible.”

As Youth Representative, Leah has been sharing her talents by giving back to the community and offering virtual singing lessons for Métis youth during the pandemic. “It’s been a very fun experience,” she says.

This January, Leah intends to attend the Metalworks Institute for her studies, but will continue making music with her producer Jace Martin, president of the Darren Ross Agency.

The MNO congratulates Leah for this nomination and wishes her the best of luck this weekend!

This year’s 2021 Summer Solstice Indigenous Music Awards will take place on June 12, 2021. Be sure to tune in for the awards ceremony and live performances at