Expert in jazz, world and modern music,
Mother of three daughters
After finishing finishing the faculty of journalism in Moscow State University, Semushkina worked as a correspondent for RTR (the most popular Russian TV channel) and hosted her own show about rock music on Radio 1.
She began arranging cultural events while working as an assistant of audio-visual communications manager at the French Embassy. She curated the center of French journalism in Moscow, managed French movie festival and introduced many French bands for Russian audience. She also managed Le Jazz festival in 2004-2010: the lineup included such legendary musicians as Richard Galliano, Erik Truffaz and many others.
In 2004 she produced the first Usadba Jazz Festival: one and only jazz festival in the world that takes place in majestic Russian estate architecture sites. Today it is the biggest open air festival dedicated to jazz and improvisational music in Russia. In 14 years more than 300 000 people and 700 musicians attended the festival. Among them were Branford Marsalis, Marcus Miller, Trilok Gurtu, Youssef Lateef, Avishai Cohen, Omer Avital, Nils-Petter Molvaer, Hiatus Kaiyote, Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, Earth, Wind & Fire with Al McCay, Tony Allen, Maceo Parker and many other jazz, funk and soul legends. Currently the festival takes place in five Russian cities: Moscow, St. Petersburg, Voronezh, Yekaterinburg and Sochi, where Art Mania agency organizes the contest for young musicians and forum for industry professionals.
Maria Semushkina is constantly visiting festivals around the world to discover talented musicians and introduce them to Russian audience: she takes part in North Sea Jazz festival, WOMAX showcase festival in Poland, Visa For Music in Marocco and many other musical events. Art Mania agency was the first to introduce Melody Gardot, Richard Bona, Avishai Cohen and many other musicians for Russian jazz lovers. Her agency is also focused at popularising the most talented Russian musicians abroad. In 2017 the agency organised the shows of LRK Trio, headed by one of the most promising Russian jazz pianist Evgeny Lebedev, in Belgium and the Netherlands.