Maria Stepina
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Maria Stepina

Band Jazz Classical

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A native Russian, Masha Stepina's music reflects the emotional richness of her countries musical history. Listening  to her skillful painoplaying, I'm caught by the mature voice she has already achieved in both improvising and composing.
The music of the trio is energetic and lively and there's always this special thing going on in Masha's pianoplaying, telling a personal story. For both her journey to Western Europe, with all the day to day challenges of living a life in music, and for her creative choices, I admire her courage and perseverance and her beautifully meaningful musical language.

Jeroen van Vliet

- M.Stepina




... It is always a delight to hear one of the best piano’s played by a professional player like Masha, she is not only technically of high standards but also capable of acknowledging the truth dept of a composition.
Masha likes to tell a story with her music, whether she is playing intimately or in full power she is always in control. Some people may be able to analyze in a scientific way what will catch on or not with the public. Emotion convinced people and nothing else but emotion. For a long time I’ve been searching for that extremely natural symphonic jazz music. This time played by a woman who can play joy and above all sadness to. To give every tune a special meaning yes I love the sound of Masha, young and mature and with magic in every way. That goes off course for her accompanied musicians as well Hans and Wim did a fine job it was nice to listen and to work with them. There are only one of a kind to find and they are really the one...

Fritz de With
Balance Engineer STS Digital - STS DIGITAL


Componiste Masha Stepina kreeg bij Muzieklab Brabant afgelopen jaar de kans een project te starten in het talentontwikkelingsproject VERS. Hierin krijgen jong getalenteerden de kans zich te ontwikkelen, buiten de grenzen van het eigen werkveld. Masha Stepina ging de grens over door een samenwerking te zoeken met choreografe Tatiana Eranosyan en een project te initiëren dat hedendaagse muziek en traditionele Russische folklore doet samensmelten.
Stepina brengt als resultaat een uiterst inventieve compositie die bol staat van opzwepende, steeds scherper aanzwellende passages die levenslucht in de dans blazen. Een fris aandoende dans waarbij de dansers deel uitmaken van de muziek door de maat aan te geven met een stamp op de grond, klap in de handen, of een slag op elk willekeurig lichaamsdeel. Deze directe interactie tussen pianiste en dansers zorgt voor veel zichtbare spelvreugde en maakt de twee disciplines tot een geheel.
De choreografie laat zich aanvankelijk kenmerken door een moderne inslag; voortstuwende en terugtrekkende bewegingen hebben de overhand. Intens en avontuurlijk tegelijkertijd. Hier sluit een veel intiemer stuk op aan: de vier dansers buitelen in slow-motion over elkaar heen en vormen een intrigerende compositie van ledematen waarin amper te onderscheiden is welk lichaamsdeel aan welke danser toe behoort. Gaandeweg wordt de dans steeds traditioneler, in de zin dat de Russiche elementen meer en meer zichtbaar worden. Dansers sieren hun grauwe kostuums op met klassieke Russische sjerps en schorten. Dat verhoogt tegelijkertijd de levendigheid en frivoliteit in de beweging. Slotstuk vormt een aantal prachtig, opzwepende staaltjes traditionele Russische danskunst. Een opmerkelijke uitkomst van dit project; Stepina en Eranosyan zijn er verrassend goed in geslaagd beide disciplines gelijkwaardig met elkaar te vervlechten en een brug te slaan tussen moderniteit en traditie. Zowel in muziek als in dans. Fraaie prestatie van deze talenten in de dop. (Lieke Jordens) - www.8weekly.nl


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

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Bio

Masha Stepina is a young Russian pianist and composer who started piano lessons when six years old, both parents being accomplished musicians.
At the Rostov college of Arts in her hometown Rostov-on-Don, she later studied classic and jazz theory and graduated with "Variety Musical Art Theory Teacher", and "Variety Orchestras and Ensemble Leader" qualifications.
            
Although doubting to concentrate on classical or jazz piano when taking up her advanced studies at the S.V.Rakhmaninov Conservatory, she entered in the end as a theory student and after five years of intensive studies with the best teachers in the south of the country , graduated with several more qualifications: "Musicologist-Teacher" and "Music Life Organizer” in the Speciality of Musicology. Also in this time she started composing jazz songs.

During this period she took up teaching at the Rostov College of Arts as a theory teacher, with duties in music history, piano and jazz-ensemble departments, among other subjects as well.
At the same time she developed and published a few educational programs for use in music colleges.
Outside the college she was teaching small children from the age of four at the Music School for Gifted Children, apart from working in several regular music schools.

But after seven years of teaching, playing the piano as a main occupation became more and more tempting and after much doubt Masha decided to give up her quite successful career in education and decided to come to Holland and study jazz piano.
       
There she studied with Johan Clement and Rob van Bavel and received her Bachelor Degree at the Rotterdam Conservatory in 2006, after which she went on to a Master study at the Maastricht/Tilburg Conservatory which she has successfully graduated in 2008. There Masha took lessons with Rob van Bavel, Kris Goessens, Randal Corsen, Jeroen van Vliet, Martin Fondse and Bart van Dongen.
During that education Masha had a great experience with following master-classes of John Taylor, Barry Harris, Harold Danko, Antonio Farat, Mike Garson, Frans Elsen.

Since 2007 Masha works as a piano accompanist at the Rotterdam Dance Academy of Contemporary Art.
In 2007-2008 she has got produced by the MuziekLab Brabant for a project "ContemporaryOrthodox" - Russian folklore traditions through a prism of contemporary art. This project gave Masha great opportunity to present herself as pianist, composer, producer, performer, organizer.