Arts & Culture

First comes Junos…

RRC grads feel the love after award

Every couple has special memories they look back on and smile. They might start with, “remember that camping trip?” or “that’s the booth you had the weird salad in.”

For Roberta Hansen and Dave Landreth, it might go a little more like, “remember that time we both won at the Junos?”

Both Hansen and Landreth were recognized at the 2015 Juno Awards for their involvement in the arts community — Hansen for her design work on singer-songwriter Steve Bell’s 25-year anniversary box set, and Landreth for his work as one quarter of the band The Bros. Landreth.

“It was very exciting,” said Hansen of the duel win. “We were awarded at the gala dinner and it was beautiful. We were sitting there for about three hours before the awards were announced.”

“I feel particularly fortunate that we were able to share that together,” added Landreth. “It’s the kind of thing that you almost can’t explain to somebody. I did it, and then she got to experience it 15 minutes later.”

Hansen’s rise to fame has been a fast one. Before turning to graphic design, she was pursuing a career in psychology.

“I got my degree, and I was going through the whole program to be a psychologist. I realized to get your PhD, you have to do 10 years of math. And I don’t like math,” said Hansen. “I [thought] if I’m going to spend all this time doing something, I should do something I love. And I love art.”

Hansen decided to enroll in RRC’s Graphic Design Program. Since finishing the program in 2012, she has worked at local advertising agency Honest Agency, and has started Treehouse – Design by Roberta Hansen, her own graphic design business,

“I was very nervous leaving my job, but this [Juno] legitimized my career,” said Hansen. “I feel extremely fortunate to make a living off being independent.”

The same can be said for Landreth and his band. Since releasing their debut album Let it Lie in 2013, The Bros. Landreth played the 2014 Winnipeg Folk Festival, signed to American label Slate Creek Records, planned a two-month tour across America and now can call themselves “Juno winners.”

“[The Juno] doesn’t change anything necessarily. It adds a certain degree of legitimacy to your career. It catches people’s attention and gets a conversation going,” said Landreth. “But at the end of the day it doesn’t change what you’re doing.”

And what the couple is doing — apart from touring and working on new projects — is planning a wedding social and enjoying their “power couple” status.

“We’ve got to get matching track suits,” said Hansen.