The Voice's Karina Iglesias returns home to South Florida

Of course. You just don't know what doors are going to open. I’m definitely going to go back to L.A. and have some meetings, reconnect with people from the show. I know good things can come out of it if you continue to hustle and work hard.

Can we expect a new single on the radio any time soon?

We can't release any new stuff until the show is over on June 18. But one thing is getting the funds to do this record. People are telling me I just got out of The Voice and I'm going to be rich, but it doesn’t work that way. A lot of people are famous and broke.

Well, you recently received a tweet from Mr. 305 Records, "a record label focusing on the development and success of the next superstar" that’s tied to superstar Pitbull. Any chance they’d want to release your work?


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I’m interested to see what their interest is. Maybe there's a little duet with Pitbull. Who knows?

Tell me about your grandmother, whom you’ve said before was your inspiration to start singing.

I grew up going to church with Abuela Olimpia, like, Tuesday through Sunday. She was very involved in the church and would always sing and call me up to harmonize with her. Then I started singing in school choir, but my mom couldn’t afford to keep me in choir so I didn’t pursue music until college.

Grandma went to the blind auditions and she went to the battle rounds too.

Shakira just announced she won’t be a coach for next season, and Christina Aguilera will be reclaiming her seat as a coach on the show’s next season. How do you feel about that?

The people that are in this room [Iglesias’s family] are probably really excited. But I think I was part of a special season because she was in it. I don’t know if Cee-Lo’s confirmed that he’s coming back but it’s possible. I’ve heard through the grapevine that those chairs are [Cee-Lo’s and Christina Aguilera’s] for good.

How was it different having her as a coach than Adam Levine?

I thought Shakira was a better coach for me. She was very hands-on and involved with everything, from our song selections to wardrobe and hair. She was more invested than Adam. But, then again, she’s a woman and Adam’s a guy, so I don’t see him getting much involved with people’s wardrobes. It’s just one of those things. Adam was a good coach too. He’s a very talented pop star and I would have done well with either of them.

The cool thing is that you get to perform in front of these mega superstars. I got four opportunities to sing in front of them and I performed with Rod Stewart too. There were so many things amazing things that happened. That battle with Judith Hill, everybody loved it. We had fun with that, too. We made a spoof.

What was your favorite song that you performed on The Voice?

It would have to be my last one, "Let’s Stay Together." It’s one of my favorite songs and I felt I was ready for it. I was just there having the time of my life and giving it all that I had. I didn't want to be nervous because I had prepared for that moment. I just wanted to enjoy it in front of the world. I will always be proud of myself because I know I did everything I could, and I had fun up there.

Have you thought about the role your sexuality will play in your career?

[Karina]: I've been pretty open about [my sexuality] for a long time. It doesn’t really matter in this day and age. We’re at a stage where everyone knows that people are people and love is love.

[Maritza Funes, her mother]: I did not expect it [when Iglesias came out as lesbian as a teenager]. It was hard in the beginning because of the way we were raised. But now, her friends come up to her and say, "I wish my mom was like yours."

[Karina]: Yeah, Mom went out with me to a few gay bars. She's doing better.

Anything you want to say to your South Florida supporters and your fans out there?

Thank you for the love and support. I was very happy to represent you.