A Bad Woman Feeling Good:
Blues and the Women Who Sing Them
by Buzzy Jackson
Miscellaneous Female:
The Journals of Damhnait Doyle
by Damhnait Doyle

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Maria Ilieva is recognized as the most successful female vocal artist of the contemporary Bulgarian music scene. From her debut appearance to this very day - her unique talent, outstanding voice, authentic style and influential personality has won her unprecedented admiration of both public and media, as well as highest professional acclaim among fellow musicians and artists of all generations.

Born in a family of renowned musicians, Maria’s devotion to music was apparent since early childhood. Trained pianist since the age of five, she developed her vocal skills as a member of the prestigious “Petko Stainov” Choir Academy. Maria excelled in other areas of education as well, graduating with Honors from the elite High School of Mathematics in Sofia. She proceeded to receive a Master’s degree in Insurance and a Master’s degree in International Relations.

Her career as a performing vocal artist started in the late 90’s, when she was the lead vocalist of the highly successful Kaffe Band – best known abroad for representing Bulgaria at the 2005 Eurovision Song Contest.

The launch of Maria Ilieva’s solo career is marked by the release of her first single “Moon Dream” in the summer of 2001. The groundbreaking album (also titled "Moon Dream") was duly released to sensational success later on in the year, having been described as “a phenomenon in BG pop music” (”Rhythm” magazine, February 2002). Awarded singles released from the album (“Moon Dream”, “Nothing”) have gone straight to No.1 in all leading Bulgarian radio and television pop charts, while “Alright” (produced in collaboration with the avant-garde soul-funk band “TE”), shot to fame by staying at the top of "Bulgarian Top 100" chart for the unprecedented 13 successive weeks.

Maria’s next project – “Stereo Room” – will be remembered as the first completely animated Bulgarian music video, accentuating her innovative and experimental style. Included in this release are remixes by top Bulgarian DJs, played at the country’s hottest dance venues – regularly featuring a list of renowned world class acts.

After establishing her own record label “MI Productions” in 2003, Maria Ilieva undertook a series of new projects:

  • “What Does It Take” - first single relesed in English / video produced in Los Angeles, USA, went straight to No.1 as a new entry on MM TV’s TOP 20.
  • “You Come To Me” – Maria’s first ballad single, presenting a new sensitivity of Maria’s approach to music.
  • “Born for Love” – duet single with distinguished Bulgarian male vocalist/composer Grafa, whose video went to No.6 on MTV Europe’s World Chart Express.
  • “Off the Record” – Maria’s first collaboration with a hip-hop artist – Knas /”Knas&Bacardi”/ - 3 weeks at No.1 - "Out of 5" chart of Bulgarian National Television.
  • “Past” – a single that has gone to No.1 of BG Radio’s TOP 20 chart and stayed there for 5 weeks.
  • "On My Own" - a sinlge dedicated to the fight against human trafficking and forced prostitution. Official world premiere - 24.03.2007, at "The stars of Europe concert", dedicated to the 50th anniversary of EU, broadcasted on 56 national TV stations worldwide.
  • "Words" - a single of Maria that went straight to No1 /MM TV Top 20/ three weeks after its release.

    All the mentioned singles are featured on Maria Ilieva’s album “I COME TO YOU” in stores now. Another ambitious project of the talented singer is her new label for young Bulgarian talents called “Stereo Room”/2007/. This is a record label that will aim at producing and promoting young talented singers from Bulgaria. Billed as a top star at all established regional international music festivals, Maria has performed as the opening act for celebrated artists such as

    George Michael, Simple Minds, Danni Minogue, Atomic Kitten, Garaj Mahal, and others, as well as performing alongside Simply Red, Scorpions, Glenn Hughes, UB40, The Gipsy Kings, Zucchero, Kim Wilde, Spike Edney’s All Star Band, and Lou Bega.



  • Best Album Award ("I Come To You"/M.I.Productions) - MM TV Awards
  • Golden Pen Award - for a Special Contribution to Bulgarian Culture - Classic Fm Radio/MAKTA


  • Best Female Artist Award – BG Radio Music Awards
  • Woman of the Year Award – Grazia Magazine/Avon Awards


  • Best Female Artist Award – BG Radio Music Awards
  • Best Style Award – Bravo FM Group


  • Best Female Artist Award – Melo TV Mania, Bulgarian National Television
  • Best Hair Style – Pantene Beauty Awards

    2002 – 2003

  • Best Female Artist Award – BG Radio Music Awards
  • Best Female Artist Award – MM TV Awards
  • Best Female Artist Award – Rhythm Magazine Awards
  • Best Video Award (Nishto) – Rhythm Magazine Awards

    2001 – 2002

  • Best Debut Award – Melo TV Mania, Bulgarian National Television
  • Best Debut Award – MM TV Awards
  • Best Video Award (Moon Dream) – BG Radio Music Awards
  • Best Video Award (Moon Dream) – Forte Top 100 Awards, Bulgarian National Television
  • Best Female Artist Award – BG Radio Music Awards
  • Best Female Artist Award – Forte Top 100, Bulgarian National Television


    Hollywood based movie productions:

  • 2005 – “The Undisputed 2”- A New Image Production
  • 2004 – “Submerged” – A New Image Production
  • 2004 – “Locust”- An UFO Production
  • 2004 – “The Mechanic”- A New Image Production

    Bulgarian movie productions:

  • 2002 – “Emigrants” – A Boyana Cinema Production

    Apart from her music career, Maria Ilieva has been dedicated to a number of important social engagements and causes, such as:

  • 2007 – Ambassador of the European Year of Equal Opportunities for All
  • 2006 - 2007 – Official Spokesperson for Face to Face Foundation’s Campaign Against Human Trafficking and Forced Prostitution
  • 2006 – Official Spokesperson for Standard daily newspaper Fund-raiser Initiative for Talented Children
  • 2005-2006 – Official Spokesperson for the Avon Cosmetics’ Campaign Against Breast Cancer, a part of the global initiative for Breast Cancer awarness and prevention.


  • 2006-2007 – Official spokesperson for BMW
  • 2005-2007 – Official spokesperson for Haute Couture designer NEVENA
  • 2003-2005 – Official Pantene Pro-V Brand Ambassador and Spokesperson
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