As one of the few cellists who are able to accompany themselves, the German singer-songwriter MARA with the "wonderful soprano voice" (Allgemeine Zeitung Mainz) combines in her music her classical roots with her preference for pop music and jazz. Her songs are honest, creative, intimate, fragile - and at the same time self-confident and questioning.
Originally a professional cellist in the orchestra, her transformation began in 2016 by taking part in the master class of jazz cellist Stephan Braun, at whose closing concert she played Mark Summer's "Julie-O" in front of about 700 people with thunderous applause. After that, she completed studies in jazz improvisation, began to sing while playing cello, tried guitar effects on the cello and found her own sound via the loop station. In 2018 she has been concentrating more intensely on her solo career, she played first concerts with her own music and performed at the New Directions Cello Festival with her own arrangement of "Blackbird" by the Beatles in the WDR broadcasting hall. 2019 was an intense year with the recording and planning of her debut album OFF THE BEATEN TRACK, which came to see the light of day right during the pandemic in 2020.
"I believe that this world would be happier if everyone could live out their creativity freely. Therefore I would like to encourage you to go looking for your true talents and to have the courage to enrich the world with your uniqueness."
As one of the few cellists who are able to accompany themselves, the German singer-songwriter MARA with the "wonderful soprano voice" (Allgemeine Zeitung Mainz) combines in her music her classical roots with her preference for pop music and jazz. Her songs are sensitive, honest, creative, fragile - and at the same time self-confident, rebellious and questioning.
Growing up in Gera, she took up passion for the cello at the age of 7 and initially followed the 'purely classical' cello tradition: she successfully participated in competitions such as "Jugend Musiziert" and, at age 17, played Max Bruch's "Kol Nidrei" as a soloist with the Gera Philharmonic Orchestra. Besides, the desire for more musical freedom always slumbered.
Following was a classical university degree in violoncello with a diploma (Hochschule für Musik Franz Liszt Weimar, Conservatoire National Supérior de Musique et Danse in Lyon), but only 10 years and several positions in various professional orchestras later (Staatskapelle Weimar, Hessisches Staatsorchester Wiesbaden, Philharmonisches Orchester Mainz, Stuttgarter Philharmoniker, Philharmonisches Orchester Ulm), she started looking for her own musical creativity. In a master class by the jazz cellist Stephan Braun at the Cello Akademie Rutesheim, where she played Mark Summer's "Julie-O" in the final concert in front of about 700 people in the Rutesheimer Festhalle with thunderous applause, the spark jumped to try new things and improvise on the cello.
Inspired by the desire to learn more of these new playing techniques and to delve deeper into non-classical genres, she completed her further studies in "Improvisation for strings" at the Anton Bruckner Private University in Linz with jazz cellist Susanne Paul in 2018, began to sing while playing the cello, tried guitar effects on the cello and found her own sound via the loop station. At the same time, she started her solo career, played her first concerts with her own music and performed with her arrangement of Paul McCartney's "Blackbird" as a soloist in the final concert of the international "New Directions Cello Festival" in the WDR broadcasting hall in Cologne. She receives vocal coaching from Amy Leverenz (Xavier Naidoo and others) and received coaching from the celebrated crossover cellist Tina Guo (Hans Zimmer) in Los Angeles.
2019 followed an intense year with the planning and recording of her debut album OFF THE BEATEN TRACK, which was released in 2020. She contrasts six of her own compositions with songs from pop, classical and jazz, thus showing how she as a singing cellist found her voice off the beaten track.
MARA also appeared on stage as a band musician with Michael Bublé and performed with the string quartet "La Finesse" besides Germany-wide concerts also events at BVB and Schalke stadium.
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