“It was the medicine that pushed me towards my art”

Svetlana Surganova.  Graduated from the Pediatric Academy of Saint Petersburg with a degree in “Pediatrics”

The story of my grandmother, Zoya Mikhailovna, the one who brought me up,  inspired me to become a doctor. She was a radiologist and a tuberculosis specialist, she worked in Leningrad during the Siege. The Surganovs’ family survived thanks to her profession. She had cured one of her patients of tuberculosis and out of gratitude he would bring food products to her family in the time of the Siege.

I am sure, medicine always comes in handy, even if you don’t work as a doctor: you are able to understand what is happening with you or your loved ones.  Yet, the most important was that at the Medical College and the Academy I met people who motivated me to write songs and create music. So it was the medicine that pushed me towards art.

One of the most vivid memories from the times of my internship was the first amputation where I assisted. When the surgeon finished, I had to remove a 30-kilo limb from the operating room. It was a leg of a rather big man, so heavy, it didn’t feel very good, frankly.

What can I do? Well, in case of emergency, I can make an intravenous injection, somehow. As for some specific skills, I am, of course, a theoretician. But it turned out that over the years I became almost a professional gerontologist, although I graduated from the Institute that trained children’s doctors. I am surrounded by older people: my mother, her friends. Something is always happening to them and you must help them, consult and cure. That is why I am in a good professional shape. 

Source: Zdravookhranenie Rossii

Surganova was showered with flowers in Khabarovsk

Yesterday, June 10, Svetlana Surganova’s concert was held at the City House of Culture in Khabarovsk.  The singer presented her program devoted to the 15th Jubilee of “Surganova and the Orchestra” band, – “Khabarovskiy krai segodnya” News Agency informs.

The artist was warmly welcomed and showered with flowers. 

Svetlana performed songs to the poems by Marina Tsvetaeva, Iosif Brodskiy and other classics along with compositions by modern authors. The singer had a good communication with the audience, she shared short stories about creation of the compositions and what they were about.

“We cannot finish our Jubilee year and have started the second run, – Svetlana told to our News Agency. – A big Russian tour, tours to Germany, the USA, Canada, the Baltic States, now the Far East, where we are rare guests, Sold-outs in Moscow and Saint Petersburg….  I’ve got a lot of songs by different authors, from Lorka  to Jimenez, from Brodskiy to Polozkova, the  album holding an honored position in our discography is “Pesni voennykh let” (“Songs of wartime”) album. There are great songs and genius authors there. I am especially thrilled singing songs by Okudzhava, fond of “Deltaplan” (“Hang glider”) by Artemyev, Zinovyev.  Our band, we are very eclectic…”

Svetlana answering the question why she left “Nochnye Snaipery” band said, that she was not the one who left, but the one who was forced to leave.

“I don’t regret now, not at all. Eventually, it was a right decision and the way how it was made doesn’t matter now, I am grateful for it.  I have my own way and it’s good that I was pushed onto it duly. We communicate with Diana sometimes. We were like old friends at the concert celebrating the 25th anniversary  of “Nochnye Snaipery” and performed there several songs together. I know that Dinka is always somewhere near, I feel her,” – said Surganova.

The singer also confessed that she was sometimes confused with Arbenina. 

“Diana, I am your fan since childhood.”  – It really makes me smile. Yet, I don’t like to cheat, I am not able, and in such cases I have to disappoint the person: no, my dear friend, this is not Diana, this is only Sveta,” – the leader of “Surganova and the Orchestra” band said. 

By the way, the orchestra that yesterday performed with Svetlana and her band was our local “Gloria” chamber music ensemble from Khabarovsk.

DELFI: an Interview before the concert in TALLINN

On the eve of her hot concert in hot Tallinn Svetlana Surganova told why Oxxxymiron was of interest to her and what “Nochnye Snaipery” of the year 2019 would have been like.

The organizers have announced the concert as the new and the best. What is the best for you?

We’ve collected the best compositions we created for the last 15 years. In April 2018 our band celebrated its 15th anniversary. And now within the frames of our world tour we are, I dare say, skating our Jubilee program. It includes our best compositions along with the new ones released in 2018 and 2019. It is a wonderful combination of the strings arrangements and the guitar drive. I am sure, this program can satisfy the tastes and interests of very different audiences, for those who love the classics and the high poetry we have songs to the poems by Anna Akhmatova, Marina Tsvetaeva, Iosif Brodskiy, for others – dancing, drive and new modern sounding. 

Continue reading “DELFI: an Interview before the concert in TALLINN”

The Concert at “16 tons” club is cancelled

Dear Friends! We are sorry to inform you about cancellation of two nearest concerts – at “16 TONS” Club on May 24 and at the “Otkroi Okna” (“Open the Windows”) festival on May 25.

We have to cancel the concert due to the state of Svetlana’s voice. Svetlana slightly overstrained her voice at the performance in Zaryadye Park on May 9, that concert was of great significance to her. Then she caught a heavy cold that led to loss of voice. Up to now Svetlana has almost recovered, but, unfortunately, the time has not been enough for her voice.

We are being intensively treated, today we’ve got the consultation of Ekaterina Osipenko, perhaps, the best phoniatrist of the country, the President of the Phoniatrics Association of Russia. The doctor’s verdict is as follows: if you give the nearest concerts you might cause irreparable damage to your voice apparatus.

The concert at “16 TONS” will take place on September 8! Tickets will be valid! We will be very grateful if you don’t return them and keep until September 8.

As a pleasant bonus, on May 24, at “16 TONS”  MONONLIZA band  will perform for you absolutely free (without any payment). They are our friends who agreed to help us out and come for our sake from Saint Petersburg! You are welcome! 

MONOLIZA band will also perform in our time (18:20) at the “Otkroi Okna” (“Open the Windows”) festival.

We bitterly regret and apologize to all our audience. We hope for your understanding, and we also hope that we will be able to give concerts in Belarus and the Baltic States, there is still time before them.


Holders of tickets for “Surganova and the Orchestra” concert on May 24 as well as the tickets for the canceled concert of MONOLIZA band at “Mumiy Troll” Bar  have free entrance to “16 TONS” club this Friday. All others should buy a new ticket for 500 rubles!

Our Spectator is kind, generous and demanding

The Russian rock stage is wonderful in its diversity. The Names that have lasted since the nineties and, it is even more important, have become increasingly popular over the years, have got every right to the legendary status in the twenty-first century.

Svetlana Surganova and “The Orchestra” will perform in Tallinn on June 8. An amazing, delicate woman leads a team of equally enthusiastic musicians and is ready to share with us some thoughts about creativity in the run up to concerts in Tallinn.

In 1993-2002 she was a soloist and violinist of “Nochnye Snaipery” band. Now she is a leader of “Surganova and the Orchestra” band.

Continue reading “Our Spectator is kind, generous and demanding”


Very soon “Surganova and the Orchestra” band is  going on a tour across the cities of the Far East!

On June 10 — Khabarovsk,  City Palace of Culture  Tickets online

On June 11 — Komsomolsk-on-Amur, Aviastroiteley Palace of Culture  Tickets online

On June 13 — Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, City Hall. Tickets online

On June 14 — Vladivostok, Fesko Hall. Tickets online

On June 29 — Magadan, the City Day. Free admission


“Pryamaya rech” (“Direct Speech”) journal: “Be the best version of yourself!”

In the Jubilee year, the founder and leader of “Surganova and the Orchestra” band has no time for her own birthday.

In 2003 she created and took on stage an orchestra, and the 15 years of new sound have pushed her years with “Nochnye Snaipery” into the background. Now she is “Aprelskaya” (“An April Song”) for some people, “Suzanna” or “Murakami” for others, and even a great “Fury” for somebody. It is an exceptional case, when  as a result of subtraction the sum is obtained. Behind the stage of Moscow Jubilee concert “Pryamaya Rech” (“Direct Speech”) journal  tried to calculate the square root of two, when one is born – never less in integrity and substance.

Ironical movement

Svetlana, what events of these 15 years are the most important for you?

The first I can think of is the Kremlin concert dedicated to our 10th anniversary. For me it was a very significant event. I was thrilled to appear on the main stage of the country. It was a large-scale performance. Our fans made incredible dancing flash-mobs: the academic Palace of Congresses had never seen anything like that in its history, I believe. In general, each tour is an important event. We give concerts all over the country, make tours around the world and gather full halls everywhere. I don’t care about super popularity, for me it’s enough just  to know that our work has helped someone in a specific life situation, and  hundreds of letters, posts on social networks or audience responses after concerts  are the evidence of it. Our songs bring relief and give a ground for reflection. It is not the quantity of response, but its quality that counts.

What album is the most important for you?

Each album is dear for me in its own way. It is difficult to single out one. All of them are my children. “Letnik” (“Summer album”), in my opinion, is the most revolutionary one as the concept of sound has changed in it. The album acquired some dancing features and even became a mainstream. I am  interested in working in this aesthetics now, although, to my mind,  “Furia” (“The Fury”), being the most dancing song up to now, refers us to the earlier “Surganova and the Orchestra” band.

By the way, why the orchestra?

All the musicians of the band are multi-instrumentalists. Mikhail Tebenkov plays keyboards, trumpet and samples. Here are three people. Valeriy Tkhai plays the piano, acoustic guitar, bass guitar equally well … I can also be “split into three”, if you wish, I sing, I play the violin, the piano, the guitar … You see, one musician of our band equals to several. Of course, there is some irony in the word “orchestra”, to which we strive in creating our arrangements, but the main feature is that we play polyphony, keep the interaction of musical lines: there is a dialogue between the instruments, there is an orchestra.

It was not only the band that had an anniversary this year, you had a jubilee too. How did you celebrate your 50?

My birthday coincided with a concert in Yekaterinburg, next day we had a concert in Chelyabinsk. Unfortunately or fortunately I didn’t have time for my 50.

Is this a familiar story for you to celebrate your birthday at a concert?

It happens sometimes. Usually I have a birthday party at home, with my family, tasty meal, toasts and presents. For some time my friends used to make me quests with tasks, riddles, charades, written and sealed in envelopes. It is good that there are many secluded places in my three-story house where they can be hidden or scattered. To get a present I must deserve it by going through this labyrinth.

What presents do you remember most?

Once I was given a notebook, it looked like a book and the milestones of “Surganova and the Orchestra” band were printed on its pages. I learned and recalled a lot about myself.

Simple metamorphosis

What do appear first – words or music?

Music comes first more often now, then a verse. The creative task is more difficult in this case, because the musical phrase dictates a certain verbal rhythm. With the melody you receive  a rebus and you have to observe many rules while solving it. The melody sets the pace, drawing, breakdown. This form sets a more rigid framework. Simultaneous appearance of music and text is ideal, a line is born, a phrase, a quatrain with a ready melody, and you just go on with the theme. The seed germinates and it needs to grow.

Is writing an urge, an insight or a working process? You get up, wash yourself, take a pen, paper, the instrument and get to work?


Does the atmosphere of writing matters, as they say it? What is the best place – at home, in the studio, on a road, driving a car?

Texts can be born anywhere. Of course, solitude and, if possible, very thick walls are good when you start working with a melody, with a sound. I still feel embarrassed when I realize one can hear me. Therefore I use sordino when playing  the violin. It suppresses the sound and allows you not to disturb your neighbors at home or in a hotel. Its harder with a voice.  You can’t purr under your breath to warm up, you have to sing loudly. Therefore, I am happy when nobody hears me and nobody bothers me. Silence and solitude inspire my creativity more and more often.

Does it happen that you have no wish to sing, play or compose?  What helps you to overcome the crisis, if it comes?

I do not know the word “crisis”. What does a crisis mean? It is just another stage, like exhale and inhale or inhaling followed by exhaling. There may be minutes, a day,  a year of silence. Lull. Why should you perceive it as a crisis? I have no depression, decadence, I am not embittered at people and do not want to commit suicide. Where  is the crisis? May be less money? Sometimes it is good to sit on a diet. The philosophy of asceticism appeals to me. I will come to it one day, I hope.

The century of greed

You make evenings of poetry, read Akhmatova, Tsvetaeva, Brodskiy, Polozkova … Is it of any demand in our society?

People have not lost interest in the poetic word. Real, talented, beautiful poetry is the most powerful concentrate of energy of the highest emotional and spiritual experience. People feel it and derive a tremendous recharge from this unconditional touch to the beauty – beautiful speech, beautiful rhyme and beautiful word. Consciousness and speech are interrelated. I am sure that speech determines consciousness. If someone expresses one’s thought with competence, grace and poetry, he a priori never turns to be bad – rude, violent, unintelligent. The gift of speech is the gift of God given to humanity. And poetry is the pinnacle of this gift of God. Of course, it makes me happy when someone seeks to comprehend it.

Don’t you have a feeling that this interest does not come from an inner impulse, but as requested by a crowd for the sake of a good tone, witty remark or the same Instagram, being a tribute to fashion in the long run?

Let this interest be a tribute to fashion, let it raise a wish to join a good crowd. Sometimes the outer determines the inner as a result. There is a reason that many psychologists advise to smile even in a bad mood or feeling unwell. If you find the strength to smile once and again, your spirit, thoughts, form and content will change for the better. Those who go to the evenings of poetry for the sake of fashion or communication will get the positive effect sooner or later. I admit that there is a way to poetry without any internal urge to listen to it.

Don’t you find it too artificial? People read recommended books, save animals, take an active part for the sake of a like on the social networks…

Why not, if you have done something good and got a like? You just do! The main thing is to live consciously! Be the better version of yourself! Develop yourself, your potential, work at it even for the sake of the likes. People will get fed with the game and cease to give you the likes, yet the essence will stay with you – and the outer state will be transferred into the inner.

The world of the right people seems to be around. Yet, at the same time, everything is being done on the surface, somehow, from a scratch … Doesn’t it prove that people become shallow?

Everyone has one’s own serious reasons for that. But, in my opinion, one of the ills of the mankind is greed. We want more, more, more … To make a film, you need to create scenery and costumes, to study history, to have a casting … And not everyone will fit, a particular role requires certain traces  the actor must possess along with charisma, as it is now conventional to say. So it was before. And imperishable works appeared as a result, they are still keeping us warm. But why should you build the scenery today if you can draw it on a computer? To do asap is essential as the competition is high, if you fail to do in time, someone will do it instead. Thoroughness is down. Therefore, we are getting shallow. The race is around. And the race is the outcome of greed: you have to make it, because you need to earn and not to lose. The majority is driven by this strange tendency of the new philosophy – everyone is scared of losing and not getting things done in time! I am afraid neither of losing nor of failing to catch up with time! I just want to have time to enjoy this life, to be able somehow to touch its main secret – for the sake of what we are here …

Source: PRYAMAYA RECH journal

By Vitaliy Lesnichiy

TASS: “Dedication to Okudzhava”

Svetlana Surganova took part in the project by TASS “Dedication to Okudzhava”.

A collection of video greetings to the date of the poet’s birthday was  made by people  who were inspired  and are inspired by his art.

Svetlana Surganova and Valery Tkhai performed  the song “Po Smolenskoy Doroge” (“On the Smolensk Road”) by Okudzhava  at the TASS studio.


Digital release of “BULAT 95” part I, the tribute devoted to Bulat Okudzhava’s anniversary, took place several days ago.  There are songs by more than 60 veterans and young artists of the Russian rock stage in three parts of the tribute.  “Surganova and the Orchestra” band recorded for this project the song of “Po Smolenskoy Doroge” (“On the Smolensk Road”).

“BULAT 95” is presented by Moroz Records recording company in cooperation with Nashe Radio, VKontakte social network and Bulat Okudzhava State Memorial Museum. The official release will take place in the air of Nashe Radio on May 9th, on the poet’s birthday. Yet we have an opportunity to listen to more than 20 tracks of the collection right now.

Listen  in ВКонтакте

Listen in Яндекс.Музыке

Listen in iTunes





Dear Friends, it was tremendous! It just felt as a real family holiday, and you created it together with us!

Thanks to all who were at Vegas this evening, for your flashlights, singing and dancing, for the sea of flowers and applause!

Thanks for the meeting after the concert, for the happy birthday songs, gifts, Bengal lights and the cake! You are super!

We are not sure, whether our acoustics was “too much”, or “not enough”, but such evenings are worth living for and doing what we do.

The 16th anniversary is only once in life, and we will remember this evening for a long time, and we hope that you also will!

Photo by Marina Vasyusina