Maria Soboleva: Kazan, Russia


Photo: Anastasia Tokranova

Choreographer: Maria Soboleva

Artist Statement/Philosophy/Mission Statement:

As an artist I wish to spread and share the happiness of creativity, investigation and showing different , unusual sides of life. In this case I’d like to borrow one phrase, that reflects this idea – “photography is just how one should see this world”.  This summer, a half of which I spent in Vienna, I clearly understood that I have so many strong ideas and impressions and I can either call my friends and talk and discuss it, or to say it through some pieces. I’d prefer the 2nd way than bla-bla.

For me artists and art are just the ambassadors of beauty and harmony. Being a psychologist always tend me to help people to be and feel more harmonically with themselves and the environment. And I believe that art stimulates this process. It helps people to be more opened, creative, flexible mentally, being able to accept another point of view, to extend own boarders, to overcome stereotypes in their minds.

At the present moment it’s extremely necessary in my country.  Russia has great traditions in the art, but now it’s not highly sought. Exhibitions are rare and small, museums are empty, and theatres are also not full. Exception is only Shalyapin’s Opera Festival and Noureev’s Ballet Festival which both long something like 3 weeks. Speaking about modern art it’s in the deepest underground. The spectator has no education, experience of analyzing the metaphor, see inner beauty, new forms. Unfortunately I have to confess that art is mostly served to entertain the crowd, not bring up intelligent and independent minds.

I’m sure that this will happen , we just need to wait a bit and to suggest some production anyway.

Another mission which is strongly connected with the first is to encourage international exchange and to get into the world dance or art community. Because the world is much smaller than it seems, and we all live close to each other and must share and exchange in order to develop and inspire each other. I’ve already written that Russia has the deepest roots and traditions and in Vienna I clearly saw that Russian artists have a lot to say and bring into the world art, they just need to get some help to enter the whole world.

So, my biggest aims for now are to develop art in my city-region-country and to exchange ideas, and on this way meet many new people a places, which can inspire, give new feelings and experience.

Short Artist/Company Bio:

1991 – 2001 At the age of 7 enters rhythmic gymnastics sport school, 1994 – candidate for masters degree, 1998 – gets master of sports degree. 1994-2000 winner and awardee of many regional rhythmic gymnastics competitions. 1996-2000 member of regional rhythmic gymnastics team, 1998-2000 its captain. 2001 graduation.

2001 enters psychological department of Kazan State Teacher-Trainig University, joins modern dance group.

2001-2003 performing in many student festivals in category of modern dance.

2002 workshop with one of the main russian contemporary dance figures Natalya Fixel.

2004-now dancer of chamber ballet Panther.

2004-2005 performing in many modern art/ contemporary dance festivals (Nizhny Novgorod, Kemerovo, Krasnoyarsk, Saransk etc). Many workshops in the Moscow Summer School Tsekh (contemporary dance techniques).

2006 workshop with Vladimir Golubev, graduation at the University, giving a birth.

2008 come back, performing in Cheboksary, Vitebsk (Belarus), Moscow. 1st contemporary dance festival “Bodyvision” in Kazan.

2009 workshops with John Allen, Graham Brown, Reija Ware, Francesco Scavetta and others in Saint Petersburg.

2009-2010 participation in the intradance project ( – collaboration with danish choreographer Lotte Sigh. Workshop with Phillip Benjamin Jenkins (Denmark-Australia), Julia Giertz (Sweden)

2010 performing in Moscow (the Intradance Gala), danceweb scholarship, performing in Moscow at the 4 dimensions festival. Starting with some own production. In a couple of weeks I will also perform in the 2nd Bodyvision festival. And plan to have workshops with Marta Ladzyanski (Hungary), Lotte Sigh and Vladimir Golubev.

More detailed cv (to get to know me better) is on the

Describe some of your achievements over the course of the last five years:

It will be a bit similar like the CV chapter, but:

2005 – very active successful year, I am a dancer of chamber ballet “Panther”, we performed a lot in Russia. and 1st time in my/our life we were the guest performers at the biggest contemporary dance festival.

2006 giving a birth (-break in the dancing career). Graduation at the State teacher-training university (psychology department).

2007 enjoying being with my baby, studying body-oriented therapy.

2008 coming back to the company, performing in Open Space Festival (Cheboksary), IFMC (Vitebsk, Belarus), Bodyvision (Kazan)

Starting to lead stretching, pilates and modern dance classes.

2009 collaboration with Danish choreographer Lotte Sigh in the phrame of intradance project

2010 working with Phillip Benjamin Jenkins and Lotte Sigh, presenting our piece in Moscow, danceweb scholarship, starting with own production. Started to study psychodrama and write scientific study.

 What do you hope to gain from the experience of participating in this festival?

 A lot of sharing-exchanging, meeting new people – audience and artists, diving into the world dance community.

What Maria will be bringing to the Festival

Brief Description of the Work:

Maria submitted a work in progress for her application.  The dance will undoubtedly unfold as she continues to work on it.  Maria's attendance is contingent on her fundraising success. 

Title: Untitled

Number of Dancers: Solo

Description: 1st solo I started to create has a character of self-introduction. Being a psychologist I dive into my past trying to open different layers of my dancing and to figure out some key moments which influenced me, pass through gymnastics, jazzy, pop cheap performances which sometimes I have to dance for money.