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An engaging story of Elen Smile’s life and creative journey. It has everything: challenging life circumstances, a serious illness, her achievements, and quests for inspiration. It’s also a story of how a courageous Ukrainian emigrated to the USA in search of a better destiny. Get to know Elen Smile better by downloading the press kit!


From Childhood to Education

Her real name is Olena Valeriivna Polishchuk. She was born on January 11, 1988, in Vinnytsia, Ukraine. At the age of 6, she realized she wanted to become a world-famous singer. So, she started learning English by watching television and composing poetry. She dreamed of getting into a music school to study piano. However, her family couldn’t afford her education and the purchase of a piano at that time.

“I really wanted to pursue music, so I took a board, drew keys on it, and tapped on it with my fingers, imagining it was a piano. I am sure that if I had learned to play in childhood, everything in my life would have turned out differently,” – says Olena.


After finishing school, she obtained a degree in finance from Vinnytsia Technical College (2005-2008). At the age of 20, she moved to Kyiv and worked as a waitress on Khreshchatyk. This helped her earn money for further education at Kyiv National Linguistic University (2010-2016), specializing in “English Language Translation.” During the early years of her studies, she actively practiced English with tourists and began working as a translator and tour guide. She also trained her voice in karaoke bars.

During the pandemic, she moved back to Vinnytsia, mastered the profession of a streamer, and learned to earn money through investments. She opened her own agency called “Liveme.” Later on, she managed to raise a substantial amount of money, which she directed towards her dream.

During that time, she was offered to participate in the “Music Visual Awards” songwriting competition (2021) in Kyiv. Within an hour, she wrote a song titled “Ukraine-Cocaine,” which was performed in English. With this song, she won the competition, receiving the Grand Prix award. As part of the competition, a music video was shot within one hour, and the participants made it into the “Book of Records of Ukraine,” showcasing 21 video premieres within 4 hours.

“I didn’t know what to write a song about; I had never done this before! I bought a beat from the internet and wrote the lyrics. I’ve traveled a lot, and believe me, I haven’t found a better country than ours. In the song, I described what foreigners told me. They always said: ‘Ukraine is like a drug – you want to come back here again and again!’ I really wanted people to love Ukraine as much as I do. I made an unconventional parallel with drugs to show that we live in the best place on the planet. I want to add that the song came about naturally, and I wrote it with good intentions,”shares Elen Smile.

The pseudonym Elen Smile appeared accidentally. Once she registered on Facebook, where she had to enter her name in Latin characters, so the girl typed the first thing that came to mind. Later, she tried several times to change her name to her real one, but the system always rejected the application.

With this same song, translated into Ukrainian, she participated in the 10th season of the show “Ukraine’s Got Talent” (STB channel, 2021), causing a scandal with Serhiy Prytula. Such an original way of expressing love for her country astonished the judges. They did not appreciate the singer’s efforts, and Serhiy Prytula angrily criticized the song, bringing her to tears with his words:

“This song is a case where we thought we had seen rock bottom, but someone knocked from below. Wearing an embroidered shirt, putting on a wreath, singing about lard on the show ‘Ukraine’s Got Talent’ on the 30th anniversary of Independence? Emphasizing this buffoonery? It’s so awful! Your creativity is a great harm to Ukrainian culture and Ukrainian song. Talking about Ukraine in this way is mockery of it and of culture in general. I didn’t hear anything good in the lyrics of the song. Just that foreigners come and say ‘wow’ – what cool girls we have. Your creativity is vulgar, not funny, and primitive. It was shameful…”

However, her performance on the show brought her fame and recognition. In an interview with the publication “33rd. Novyny,” the artist revealed what really happened during the shooting and how she ended up there:

“I must confess, I am shocked by the deceitfulness of the show’s organizers. After all, my song ‘Ukraine – Cocaine’ won at one of the creative competitions. They invited me to the show without any auditions, persuaded me for several months to come for the shooting. They said the song would be a super hit on the show, but it turned out they just wanted to create hype around me. They intentionally started the music earlier than planned and at such a low volume so that I would ‘ruin’ the song. Then they criticized me for more than half an hour with the most disgusting words to unsettle me. Cameras were set up from all sides on me, and I understood that every word I said would be used against me. It felt like public execution, where 300 people in the audience watched as 4 judges verbally destroyed you, showering you with dirt. I couldn’t do anything about it; at first, I tried to joke, but they humiliated me even more. Of course, you won’t see this in the footage: everything was arranged to show my performance in the worst light and portray me as a fool. The people in the audience liked the song; they stood up and applauded. You can see for yourself in the broadcast how they forced this crowd behind the judges to sit down. I didn’t intend to belittle Ukraine. It’s my homeland, which I respect and love with all my heart. The song is modern and not to everyone’s taste, but everyone has the right to be themselves and express their personality. This is my journey and my transformations…”

In the same year, the artist participated in stand-up comedy performances as a comedian, as well as various television and YouTube projects. These include “I Bring You Beauty” (Ukraine channel, 2021), “Useful Program” (Inter channel, 2021), “Morning with Ukraine” (Ukraine channel, 2021), “Main Theme” (Ukraine channel, 2021), “The Fifth Wheel.” She also gave interviews to ALLATRA TV channel and took part in an online conference hosted by Otar Kushanashvili on the topic of new trends in world music. On the show “Goddess of Shopping” (TET channel, 2021), she outperformed her competitors and brought the title to Vinnytsia.  

“With my appearance, I break all beauty standards. I am not skinny, and I never dreamed of being 90-60-90, but now I am realizing myself as an XL model. I am not ashamed of my appearance; on the contrary, I want to show girls that each of us is already beautiful,” – says Olena in one of her interviews.

The artist also appeared in various commercials and in the film “Best Weekend” (Film.ua, 2022), as well as in the series “Age Difference” (episodes 20-21) (1+1 channel, 2021), “Picnic” (STB channel, 2021), and “Diet No. 0” (1+1 channel, 2022).

She also appeared in the music videos for Oleg Kenzov’s “Oh, How Good” (2021) and singer Alice Change’s “бжвлн” (2021).

After the start of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, she left for Romania, and later to Turkey, where she contracted Hepatitis B. She underwent treatment in Vinnytsia. She spent 40 days in the hospital receiving treatment through intravenous drips.

“Thanks to folk medicine, prayers, a strict diet, and the professionalism of doctors, I got back on my feet. However, I continued treatment at home, and within 4 months, I was completely healthy again. I couldn’t believe it and cried tears of joy. It was in the hospital that I started working on the song ‘Faith in the Future,’ which became a light for me, something that made me want to live and create again,” – the artist shares.

In December 2022, she emigrated to the USA. In 2023, she presented a patriotic music video for the song “Believe in the Future,” which she filmed at picturesque locations in the city of Vinnytsia.

“Along with me, a children’s group sang, and I also added a verse in English to the song to make it spread worldwide. There were 30 versions of the song; I worked on it for a long time, refining it to perfection,” – the singer says. Later, she presented a remix of this song featuring Kyiv sound producer Yaroslav Tretiak. The music video for the remix was created based on artificial intelligence.

She actively travels and dreams of visiting every corner of the world. As of October 2023, she had visited 45 countries.

More to come…

Elen Smile in the media