Since the release of her first studio album, Bossa Blue, Florence K continues to surprise, amaze and fascinate with her skill at the piano and her ease in writing and singing in five languages and as many Latin and jazz rhythms. The public’s love at first sight for this Montreal artist is instantaneous, and Florence continues touring and performing in Québec and Canada, as well as in France, New York, Asia, Brazil, Peru, and Cuba. A free-spirited musician open to all styles, she has one platinum record, two gold records and has won two Félix Awards, the SPACQ (Société professionnelle des auteurs et des compositeurs du Québec, Québec’s professional society of writers and composers) Gilles-Vigneault Award, as well as several Juno Award nominations over the course of her young career.
In 2015, Florence published her first book, Buena Vida (published by Libre Expression), the story of her own journey through severe depression and psychiatric hospitalisation at age twenty-eight. Buena Vida became a bestseller, with over 25,000 copies sold to date, highlighting our society’s critical need to speak about and listen to others speak openly about mental health.
She now devotes a significant portion of her time to advocating for mental health. After adding a university certificate in psychology to her bachelor’s degree in communication, she completed her DESS in mental health at TELUQ and then chose to complete a bachelor’s degree in psychology, in order to apply for a doctorate and one day become a psychologist, her greatest dream.
Florence was recognized in November 2017 by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto as one of the 150 leaders of change out this domain. Also an Ambassador of the Bell Let’s Talk campaign, she gives talks across the country in which she openly speaks of her own story, giving her perspective on the role of mental health in society today.
Whether with the Canadian Armed Forces, in colleges and universities, in companies, in the medical field, in community resource centres, in mental health prevention associations, or in the music industry, sharing her story touches the heartstrings of the public and goes a long way towards breaking taboos and demystifying mental health disorders. A certified yoga teacher, she also volunteered to lead yoga classes for nearly two years to recipients of the Fondation du Dr Julien. She was additionally very involved with the Marie-Vincent Foundation in 2018 and 2019 during their annual fundraising campaign.
In 2019, she produced a documentary with CBC Radio about her own bipolar experience, The Hole Inside, which aired nationally from coast to coast and received an honourable mention at the Mindset Award for Reporting in Mental Health in 2020.
From March to June 2020, in the heart of the pandemic, Florence offered a series of 7 benefit concerts live on social networks from her balcony, raising $12,500 for the Mindstrong campaign for psychiatric and mental health care at the Jewish General Hospital, where she is also the spokesperson. In addition, she was a spokesperson for the ACDETQ (Association des Center d’Écoute Téléphonique du Québec) and Unison (an emergency fund for those in the music industry across Canada), and the Festival Au Contraire of films about mental illness, benefiting Maison Up House Donald Berman. This year Florence has also been working with Revivre, where she hopes to get involved in the field.
Florence doesn’t neglect her music career, being a host of the weekly show C’est Formidable, on CBC Radio and CBC Music, where she introduces Canadians from coast to coast to the treasures of French music.
In addition, Florence published a novel for Librex editions, Lili Blues, about the psychology of love triangles. She is currently writing her third book, the sequel to Buena Vida, in which she recounts the journey that led to a correct diagnosis (Bipolar type II), the care that she received aimed at the biological, psychological and social spheres, and the tools she developed to prevent relapse which allow her to live a fulfilling life now. This new book, Nueva Vida, is expected to be released in September 2021.
She also released her tenth album in February 2020. Acclaimed by critics and audiences alike, the entirely French album, titled Florence, was produced by Jean Massicotte (Lhasa, Pierre Lapointe, Bran Van 3000, etc.), and written in collaboration with David Goudreault, Jeff Moran, Daran, Jean-Jacques Marnier and Ben Riley.
Starting in the fall of 2020, you will be able to see Florence on television as the host of the series Vivre en funambule, a new mental health series broadcast on Savoir Média.