Interview with 'D-Queens' for BG Life Magazine Ibiza
*Can you introduce yourself to our readers of BG Life Mag Ibiza: who are you, what do you do and how/why/where did it all started?
We are ‘D-Queens” Show – a club dance show that during the last few years has become a not-to-be-missed nightclub enactment for electronic music lovers. When creating the trio, the producers of the show, Mario Mitkov and Andrey Markeev, took inspiration from the golden age of clubbing 1970s-80s and famous historic inhabitants of legendary ‘Studio 54’ – particularly from Ms. Grace Jones.
*I read on your website you are inspired by Grace Jones. Can you tell us a bit more about that?
Over the past decades, she has flitted between the worlds of music, film and fashion without losing an atom of her intrinsic Grace-ness, an achievement made possible largely by her charisma, hard work and intellect. A very talented showbiz persona who crystallised the mood of the late-Seventies Studio 54 disco culture before effecting the first rapprochement between dance and new wave music with anthems such as "Nightclubbing" and "Slave to the Rhythm", she really inspired us for creating our own show that would bring the audience back to those crazy and sensitive STUDIO 54 experiences.
*Is there something typical Russian about the group, or could this have happened everywhere?
The show is ‘made in Russia’ and it is proved by the temperament and the expressionism of the dancers: they do not know the limits in good sense of the word - they dance every time as it is the last time; as all Russian women they can stop a running horse and can enter a burning house.
*What about the music: how important is this for you and do you dance to all kinds of music, or do you have a preference?
Our commitment to house music through good times and bad has earned us widespread respect far beyond the scene which catapulted us to fame in Russia.
*Your shows are very sexy, let's say extravagant with always some topless nudity in it if I'm correct. Are people always open for that, or is it sometimes difficult? And what are your boundaries? Where do you draw the line?
It depends on place, time and auditorium what kind of dance show we do – topless or not. There are contries that are still not liberal towards public nudity. For example, our experience in Montenegro where we spent several months as a guest show in one of the clubs proved to be a challenging one. It is a country with a mixture of religions, among which is Islam, it forms social behavior and culture, so there those kind of entertainments are still frowned upon. In night clubs in China the situation is the same, except some very private parties. Talking about boundaries, it is all very individual. Every dancer depending on her/his background, education, social surroundings builtds his/her own system of values that he/she sticks to. For instance, all of D-Queens in some way share the same values – we value strong relationships, we respect other’s feelings, we enjoy hard work, and we respect human beings in general. These qualities dictate our behavior on the stage, in the club, actually everywhere.
*Your group consists 3 dancers, but are there also other persons who are always with you on tour? A team: other dancers (men?), hairdresser, make-up responsible, clothing designer, booking agency,... or you do everything yourself?
Normally clubs that invite us provide us with everything: accommodation; transportation; wellness, makeup artists, (hairdressers we don’t need J). In most of the cases we are accompanied by one of our producers: Andrey Markeev or Mario Mitkov – they usually resolve all problematic situations and make our tour trips cloudless.
*Do you have a fixed residency: (a) fixed club(s) where you perform on a fixed regular base or are you connected with certain party concepts / promotors which you follow into the clubs where they do their party?
Yes, we are on residency at 'ICON Club' and 'Balzi Rossi' in Moscow. For now they are the best venues in the Russian capital. Our multi-layered dance performance is choreographed by Lena Platonova, an award-winning master of dance and movements.
These clubs are a feast for the eyes. There is so much going on with their choreographed dance shows, super special guest DJs and weekly themed stage performances! It reminds us of sci-fi movies where crazy things are happening and all we can do is look around! The ambiance of the clubs is really spectacular. The capacity of the venues is 2000 people. The spectacular interior of ‘Icon’ is a bold statement of contemporary design: stalactite-like ceiling and walls, big round bars, amazing lighting systems and sound equipment - interior layout combines the vibrancy of an amphitheater with intimate corners, VIP booths, brought to life by custom made furnishings. What astonishes is dominant light color of the walls, ceilings, podiums that is not so typical for nightclub venues.
*If we want to see you at work, do we need to come to Moscow or do you perform everywhere in the world? And can every club/festival/party anywhere book you to come to dance? You perform always on stages or also between the crowd?
We have already presented 350 dance shows in front of a combined audience of 100 000 people in Russia, China, Europa, the Balkan countries and the Middle East. Over the years, D-Queens have learned how to entertain the most indulged public and get them excited by pushing the limits and breaking the rules.
We are always open to discuss possible collaboration and come to visit a club or an event anywhere in the world. We perform on stages, in the crowd, in the go)go glasses, on the fashion podiums, actually anywhere – we are Russians who are always eager to discover everything new. *What is the best club/party/festival you ever performed and which country has the best party people? For exemple I just played my first gig in Russia as a DJ a few weeks ago, and I was really impressed by the open spirit and happiness/positivism the Russian crowd showed me!
We always remember hot August nights at Kalypso Beach Club, Croatia (Zrce Beach in Novalja), the oldest beach club in Southeast Europe, a trendsetter for beach clubbing tradition. The summer 2015 the space was transformed into a unique magic forest fulfilled with spectacular dance/live performances accompanied by top international DJs.
Dozen of blinding firefalls lighted up the stage where we were performing, .surrounded by cryogenic fog. The club, the music, the warm subtropic air and the night sea - incredible, gorgeous, fulfilling.
But in general, of course, we agree that the most positive and happy parties we attended happened in Russia (for example Space Moscow and many others)– from Moscow to Vladivostok – Russian way of clubbing is unique, chic, full of surprises, hospitable, with no boundaries – this is all about our Russian mentality.
We also are inspired by the Chinese clubbig scene – Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen and tc….cities with developed night life.The main reason why our Dance show ‘D-Queens’ went to Shanghai to perform, is that we are very interested in what’s happening in China these days. The rapid modernization, and the huge influence China will have in the world in the years to come is not just something we should not pay attention to.
There are high number of tier clubs, and we personally enjoyed them quite a lot.
Chinese clubbing experience is unique. We were firstly very surprised by the shear number of sofas and tables in a club. This is because wealthy clients go clubbing to drink and play drinking games in clubs. Chic Shanghai clubs invest a lot in interior designs, they are really fancy looking, with great furnishing and cool lighting/laser/sound equipment.
*We are an Ibiza Magazine, wo for us it's really interesting to know if you have a connection with Ibiza (direct or indirect)? I noticed for exemple you dance sometimes in Space Moscow? Did you ever perform in Ibiza (for exemple Space Ibiza) or plans for this next summer because here in Ibiza we also have some special dance acts?
We are waiting for an invitation from a reputable Ibiza promoter. We’d love to prepare a special performance for the island of clubbing in order to remember it forever. We think we are mature enough in terms of clubbing and ripe enough to fire up Ibiza in one of the upcoming summers.
*How does the future look? New plans? Something you or we have to really look forward to?
We look forward to discover the American and Australian clubbing scene. We are constantly working on our choreography and creative concepts of our shows, we attend different kinds of dance and electronic music conventions in order to stay informed about what is going on in the industry. To get inspiration from travelling and other art genres for generating ideas and professional and personal growth – that is why travelling and art events is always in our ‘to-do list’. *Last but not least, is there something special you want to share with us: a secret or a scoop, or something you want to tell to our readers?
We think that travelling and working around the world as dancers is of big value - the value of cultural exchange. We’re trying to create opportunities for young people around the world to see contemporary Russian nightclub dance performance, to share with them the experience of partying Russian-style. There could be millions of potential club dancers all over Europe, America, Asia, but if they never see what other countries produce, they’ll never create something original of their own.
*If people want to know more about you and discover some videos on the interent, what is the best way to find you (social media)?
Interview by Pedro Mercado