The Ukraine-born pianist, GéNIA (full name is not known) was born to a family of musicians and scientists, her musical upbringing was both traditional and privileged. She started her studies at the age of four with her great-grandmother, the pianist and pedagogue Regina Horowitz (sister of pianist Vladimir Horowitz and wife of the Soviet economist Evsei Liberman). She continued her studies with pianist and teacher Sergei Yushkevitch at the Kharkov State Institute of Arts until moving to London. In 1999, GéNIA graduated from the Guildhall School of Music, where she studied with Professor Joan Havill and was awarded the prestigious Premier Prix. She later graduated from Trinity College of Music, studying with Douglas Finch, and was awarded the Founders Prize for Excellence. GéNIA holds six instrumental diplomas: MMus (Dist), LGSM(Dist), PGDipMus(Dist), PGA(Dist), Honours Diploma of Kharkov State Institute of Arts (Ukraine) and Concert Recital Diploma from the Guildhall School of Music (Premier Prix GSMD). She is also a qualified B.W.Y. (British Wheel of Yoga) teacher and trained with The Life Centre®, London.
In 2000, GéNIA made a controversial and pioneering move away from the classical concert platform which had enabled her to travel the world as a performer. Her provocative and youthful appearance around this time, along with her pioneering website, reflected that of key female figures in the pop and rock industries. Although this now seems to be a standard part of the packaging of classical cross-over artists, at the time it was something that more traditional classical circles were not accustomed to.
This move naturally led her towards more underground playing circles, where she discovered her passion for expanding the potential of the piano. She realized this potential in collaborations with an eclectic range of artists and composers, particularly in the world of piano and electronics. Today, GéNIA has commissioned over 20 new works for piano and electronics and is regarded as an innovator in the field of new music performance, equally at ease on the stage of the concert hall or the nightclub.
GéNIA’s unique approach to piano playing and broad stylistic reach demonstrate her natural ability to draw creative inspiration from many disciplines. This is manifest best in her output as the inventor or Piano-Yoga®, a mutli-dimensional method of piano playing, performing and teaching. This method combines the fundamentals of Russian piano schools with Eastern philosophies, particularly yoga. The first Piano-Yoga® book was published in 2009 in conjunction with the creation of the GéNIA MUSIC Piano School which is housed at the infamous Schott Music shop in London and offers a variety of playing methods which encourage individuality and self-confidence.
GéNIA’s recorded music career to date has seen the release of several ground-breaking records on both the Blackbox and Nonclassical labels. In 1999, she released Transformations, with the Russian violinist Roman Mints. In 2000, she released “GéNIA: Unveiled” interpreting the works of 4 Russian women composers spanning 4 generations: Sofia Gubaidulina, Galina Ustvolskaya, Elena Firsova, and Lena Langer. "Suite For Piano And Electronics", GéNIA/John Richards, was released in 2007 on the Nonclassical label. It featured re-mixes by dance producers The EarlyMan, Max de Wardener, kREEPA, Gabriel Prokofiev, Derailer, Trevor Goodchilde, Germ and Vex'd. Her latest CD, "Piano Book
No. 1", is a suite of piano pieces composed by Gabriel Prokofiev and is released by Nonclassical and distributed by Naxos in America. Its worldwide release was in September 2010.
Through performance and recording, she has worked with some of the most prestigious figures in the contemporary music industry including Nik Bartsch, Max de Wardener, Carl Vine, Gabriel Prokofiev, Karen Tanaka, Ton Bruynel, Hayden Parsey, Mike McFerron, Patrick Nunn, Raimo Kangro, David Bedford, Andrew Hugill, John Richards and Howard Skempton. Her innovative approach has seen her work with some of the most prominent dance producers on the commercial music scene including The Early Man, kREEPA, Medasyn, Derailer, Trevor Goodchilde, Germ and Vex'd.
GéNIA's London appearances include the Wigmore Hall, Barbican, South Bank Centre, BFI, Kings Place, St. John's Smith Square, St Martin-in-the-Fields, Olympia, Steinway Hall, Vortex and Cargo. She also appeared as soloist on soundtracks for the award-winning films Paradise Grove and Bookcruncher and performed at the play “The Night Season” at the National Theatre in London. Her recordings and live interviews have been broadcast on BBC TV and Radio.
Alongside a busy artistic career GéNIA also undertakes educational work by giving master-classes, seminars, lectures. She has taught at Trinity College of Music, Dartington and COMA Summer Schools, De Montfort University (Leicester), Lewis University (Peoria, USA), Californian Association of Piano Teachers (CAPMT) in Los-Angeles and EPTA (European Piano Teachers Association) International Conferences in 2007 and 2009. GéNIA is regularly invited to become involved in numerous educational projects; she is currently on the Board of Directors of "Mysuka", a Californian Children's Choir, USA.