By Cecily Markland
By the time she was three, Celine Mireille Durney had already revealed her strong interest in music—and her talent was being recognized as well.
The daughter of Daniel and Linda Durney, of the Mesa 61st Ward, Mesa East Stake,
Celine grew up singing, performing as a soloist with a variety of signing groups, including at Mountain View High School. She won Mesa’s Got Talent and was co-winner of Arizona’s Got Talent and has performed for many local benefit concerts.
Now, a sophomore at Northern Arizona University, studying choral music education, Celine continues to earn recognition, performing recently at the ICCA West Quarterfinals at UCSD in La Jolla, Calif., and as the featured performer at the Prayer Breakfast of the International Franchise Association’s Annual Conference in Las Vegas February 16.
About their selection, Michael Isakson, former IFA Board chairman, said, “We are excited to have Celine perform …, and we are looking forward to her beautiful voice and spirit adding to the messages of inspiration provided at this annual event.”
This all comes on the heels of the release this past summer of her CD, “How Sweet the Word.”
A compilation of 13 hymns and children’s songs, the CD was originally conceived as a gift for friends who were serving LDS missions.
“I wanted to give them something special that they would enjoy,” Celine says. “I figured, what better way to show them I loved them, I wanted to encourage them and I supported them.”
Nine of the 13 arrangements on the CD, Celine did herself, including the arrangement of “Joseph Smith’s Prayer,” which is a combination of four different melodies.
In this and in other musical endeavors, Celine says, “I see music as a way to express myself, and I am grateful for the creative abilities Heavenly Father has blessed me with so graciously. I’m definitely appreciative, and I always try to show that by sharing.”
“I want to be able to use my music to show gratitude to Heavenly Father,” Celine continues. “I especially want to be able to put my testimony into song.”
Ultimately, Celine says, “I hope I can use my musical talent for good. Often music is used for the wrong reasons. I want to be able to help and inspire people always—to help people be more hopeful and, especially, to bring them closer to Christ.”
Celine is preparing for a spring opera and working on the music for “Nine Months with Angels,” a play written by Randy Lindsay that will debut in late 2015/early 2016.
“How Sweet the Word” and her CD “730 Days,” which contains two original and three cover songs, are available at www.celinemireille.com. For more information, text SINGS to 90210 or visit Celine’s website.