International Women Day 2021 - Irena Manolova

This year to honour the International Women Day, we’re shining a light on Women Who Make Waves in the music industry, celebrating their achievements and incredible journey’s.

We’ve sat down with Irena Manolova, percussion artist of the Lucid Duo, an unseen chamber music concept with their unique sounding instruments, innovative repertoire and virtuoso skills. Learn more about Irena in the interview below:

What message would you address to your younger self?

Always follow your true path and never give up on your dreams! Let no one discourage you from being yourself and pursuing your passion for marimba, because nothing is impossible! If you are dedicated to your work, everything will come to you in the right moment.

What does it mean to you to be yourself yourself?

To me being myself means to look inside myself and share the feelings that I discover there with the audience, to be completely free and honest on stage, to be able to “scream, laugh, or cry” through my playing. Marimba is my true love and it allows me to fully express my creative potential, especially when I perform with Lucid Duo.

What was the most important moment, which encouraged you on your musical path?

One of the most important moments in my development not only as an artist, but also as a person was during my marimba specialization in Tokyo with Keiko Abe, who has always been a true inspiration to me! Her presence and guidance gave me so much courage and strength to keep working on establishing marimba as a solo concert instrument. Back then I also fell in love with Yamaha marimbas, so being able to perform on this wonderful instrument is a huge privilege for me!