Breaking boundaries both musically and geographicallly, cellist, composer and multilingual vocalist Ian Maksin has created and developed his own unique genre by blending elements of different styles in a new way using his cello as the main unifying force. He sings in nearly 20 languages: Russian, Ukrainian, English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Yiddish, Ladino (language of the Sephardic Jews of Spain), Turkish, Kurdish, Armenian, Arabic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Belarusian, and Macedonian. Ian is equally brilliant in every genre in its pure form, from classical to jazz and blues, and Latin to Balkan and Middle Eastern music. His passionate interpretations and soulful sound have generated a contagious universal and ever-growing appeal to diverse audiences across the world.
Born in St. Petersburg, Russia into a multicultural family, Ian Maksin began playing cello at age six at the Special School for Gifted Children at the Leningrad Conservatory. He later continued his education at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City, where he moved at age seventeen on his own. After many years working with several prestigious symphony orchestras and chamber ensembles in the classical realm, Ian chose a new musical path, exploring his own personal artistic voice by fusing styles from music of all sorts of genres that he listened to as a kid. Ian acquired blues and rock guitar skills along with learning the cello, which allowed him to expand the capabilities of cello in a completely new and unique direction.
According to Ian himself, “at some point I realized that music was much more than just a compilation of sounds for mere entertainment of both musician and listener, but something much bigger – a force capable of healing, inspiration, unity and reconciliation among people on a global scale. I believe cello can save the world.”