The Heroine’s Journey of Alice Shpiller – rock singer, showwoman and trickster

What is the best thing that I love about my work?
My work is fully connected with freedom and needs of my soul, and my soul belongs to stage. I used to dance burlesque before, I was the first plus-size burlesque showgirl in Russia. Being the first is scary, especially here, people are not very tolerant to your looks usually.  Those times were amazing though, I had awards, had my own troupe and also first neo-cabaret weekly shows in Russia.  I quit it because I felt like I have to be in music! My passion in cabaret went away. So, I didn’t quit the stage, I just changed the genre:) So you might guess what I Iove the most in my work…. Being on stage, definitely!

What is my idea of happiness?
To follow REAL me. When I make solutions with the help of my mind it seldom works. It usually leads me to mistakes and bad mood. But when my heart speaks, my real ME – magic happens itself! Of course mistakes can wait for us everywhere:)  but when you meet them with your heart, they never hurt you. So, happiness is always in us, it’s already here. Just let it spread:)

What is my greatest fear?
I had this story:
I was on my way to the performance. International tour, 3 days, 4 performances, it was burlesque times. And when I came up on stage I… Felt nothing. Absolute black hole. Not a fear, not a nerve.
Those 3 days were like that. It shocked me so much. And then I had a depression for a year after. Hard times. When  nothing motivates you, when you literally have no energy to go and grab some food.
So, that thing really scares me. I hope this won’t happen again in my music activity, because singing and creating music was my dream since I was 16. I’m really into this, my soul is finally satisfied. And feeling nothing  doing your favourite thing is worse than everything.

What is the trait that I most deplore in myself?
I used to be very critical of myself, but after the psychotherapy I can say that the only thing that I deplore and have to clear out until it’s gone is the self-doubt. Remember this U2 “Hold me, thrill me, kiss me, kill me” song? “Believing in yourself almost as much as you doubt” (c). This line is 100% about me! So the only thing I don’t like in me is going back to the thought that I’m not strong enough, that I don’t deserve good things in this life, that I’m not talented enough. Society in Russia is very sad mostly, so a lot of people have this motto: “You are not special, behave yourself, be like everyone, you are not in a fairy-tale, we are telling you that because we care about you”. So, unhealthy beliefs lead to self-destruction only.

Which living persons in my profession do i most admire?
I don’t really have idols, I have musicians that I love and respect:)
I think one of the greatest guitarist and vocalist is Tom Keifer from “Cinderella”.
I’m really into guitar tracks by Jeff Beck, John Paul Jones and Ted Nugent.
But I have to speak more about vocalists, as vocalist too, I do not play guitar unfortunately:)
I want to mention great female voices: Beth Hart, Maria Brink and Taylor Michel Momsen.
My greatest music passions are Aerosmith, Kiss and Marilyn Manson – the last one had serious influence on me.

What is my greatest extravagance?
My belief in many people. I see one’s potential, and I used to help to take it out, to do everything I can! But years after I suddenly realized that not everyone needs that. Sometimes person can choose to live destructive life. And she or he has this right. So I spent a lot of my own energy for nothing. And that’s 100% my mistake, not their fault.

On what occasion would I lie?
In case it really helps the person I lie to. I’m not afraid to answer for my words or actions, but If I know that something can hurt someone, I will definitely lie. For example, If the person I love does something horrible in art, but I know that he or she spent years doing that, I’m not able to say my humble opinion. Well, actually I think that there are many situations where lie is a good thing. There is another caregory of people who are extremely proud to be honest because they think that this is the highest level of being noble. As for me, I prefer to be a good devil, than a creepy angel!

What is the thing that I dislike the most in my work?
Maybe you won’t believe, but I hate the process of putting the make-up on! And doing my hair. I’m so happy when there is a special person for that! But most of the time I do it myself and gosh, I’m so tired of that. By the way, it used to be absolutely different before! I hated when someone touched my face. I was tired of sitting and waiting while somebody paints me. Now I’m super relaxed and trustful as I’m having the massage!

When and where was I the happiest, in my work?
Everytime I’m full of it and don’t even have time for making the dinner. One of the happiest years is 2017. In the end of 2016 I got “Queen of burlesque” title, got successful international tour and also toured in Russia, then I got an offer to do weekly shows in 2017 and my team was brilliant in it!
After I quit burlesque in 2018 (as the dancer, but I did shows after as the producer and host) , I started to learn and to practice music.  I wasn’t very social and didn’t have my blaze of glory. Now I’m slowly returning to my powerful condition and it means that new happiest times right there, after the corner:) actually I feel happy now, the happiness is always inside us.

If I could, what would I change about myself?
I didn’t believe in myself since 13, I think. And nobody around me really did too and I always felt it. But somewhere deep inside I knew that I have a big talent to shine! But it was very hard to pull it out. I trusted everyone around me more than I trusted myself. So I would like to change this thing in past. To trust my heart and not to search for everyone’s appreciation. To know that YES, I can achieve a lot! Try and not be afraid.  

What is my greatest achievement in work?
I can say that it’s awards, winning in competitions, international tours, being the first in many things, but it’s something society loves and appreciates. So, no – those are not my great achievements  in work. So what then? I can say it’s ability to hear my partner, colleague. And understanding that I have a lot of things to learn. I don’t forget to tell myself that yes, I’m doing great, but there’s so much to learn!  Being healthy in everything I do is my great achievement + I started to keep away from toxic people a couple of years ago.

Where would I most like to live?
As for today, I already live at the perfect place of Moscow (as for me) since June. But truly saying  I’m super tired of Moscow and Russia in general. I don’t think the city reflects me and I reflect it’s habitants. I have many friends here, but I don’t belong here. There are many things in russian culture I don’t get since I was a child. I’m absolutely shocked how our women do 1001 things in a row to please men. How they cut their faces and bodies to look younger and to satisfy one guy who looks like jellyfish. It’s not the way I feel and see myself. Also, the level of anger is superhigh, people are angry everywhere on internet. Russian comments mostly are full of furious rage! As you did something to them personally. But actually it’s just only a small part of “Why I want to move to another country”.  The list is huge. But where I want to move to? I don’t know yet!:) I love many countries!  I think it’s the US. It always was my dream country. In Europe it’s Italy  or Amsterdam. But If I’ll have an interesting offer from Germany, France, Spain or whatever – superhappy to live there too!

What is my most treasured possession?
My knowledges! And vocal skills of course. Last year I had SUPER vocal coach who taught me extreme vocal techniques. Hopefully I will come back to him soon, but for now I’m focused on melismatic with top jazz vocal coach and singer.
And I’m super happy with the skills and huge experience that make me the professional showwoman, singer, artist, stage director.

What is my most marked characteristic?
I always behave like I’m showing off, but I’m not actually doing it! My way of speaking is just like this.
Top hat is my signatute accessoire, If we are talking about looks. I have a collection designed by me!

What is my most inspirational location, in my city?
It’s Izmaylovo district. It has huge beautiful forest, old buildings and houses,  the most beautiful and cozy cafes! I’m so relaxed and feeling fine when I’m there. This district is not close to city center, but it’s absolutely approachable: it’s 25 minutes approximately from the Kremlin to Izmaylovo by subway. Izmaylovo also has it’s own Kremlin! And I actually don’t like the main Kremlin you might now – I think it’s too “important” and there is nothing beautiful in there + bad energy (I feel it very strong there, probably that’s because of the dead body on the main square) but Izmaylovo Kremlin is beautiful and cozy! You can go there and find interesting workshops, for example how to bake bread and make chocolate!

What is my favorite place to eat and drink, in my city?
As I said before, those places are in that cozy old-fashioned district. Prices are nice, the food is delicious and well-served! My absolute favorites now are pretty small cafe with non-stop jazz radio and italian cousine with best pizza ever.

What books influenced my life and how?
I used to read a lot in my childhood. But I can’t say that books had that power to have an influence on me. Cartoons did. Movies did. And videogames inspired me too. Books interested me for sure, but it wasn’t like magic.
But now I choose books that help me to grow, to think differently, to choose other options by making another decisions. Dispenza, Kehoe, Tolle and other amazing authors that are helping to understand our minds.

You Only Die Once. What music would I listen on my last day?
I would say – rock’n’roll because this is my life, but….My strong passion is jazz, and I’m really into gospel. So probably that would be my choice.

Who is my hero or heroine in fiction?
Hard to say! I’m very into real life, so I can’t say that I have some favourite fictional character…. I love tricksters in general. They are the best! Any gender. Jack Sparrow is good example! I love tricksters because I feel like I’m true-born trickster.

Who are my heroes and heroines in real life?
Some people I know. I know what they have been through and how they handled it. Strong people with dignity.

Which movie would i recommend to see once in a lifetime?
My advices will be extremely bad!:)
Because I’m not gonna recommend something “wise, to think over, showing what is bad and what is good, blah blah”.
This is why I recommend:
1. “The dirt” – story about Motley Crue. I think this is how an amazing bright life looks like. And it’s about friendship and your people, team spirit.
2. “Get him to the Greek” – another rock’n’roll story full of drugs and alcohol. But actually it’s about friendship.
3. “The boat that rocked” – rock heroes of 60s who broadcasted on the pirate radio in the sea. It’s about passion and love to music that unites people.

What role play stories in my life and work?
I write them:)

What do the words ‘You are the storyteller of your own life’ to me?
We can make a real book out of our lives! When we live it with our heart, we make great choices that lead us to adventures, new people, interesting experience. So your life can be a book! Which inspires people and help them to find themselves.

Who is my greatest fan, sponsor, partner in crime?
Those are actually different people, ahaha! I’m very open to sponsoring. No, I mean it! There is no one supporting me financially. I’m paying for my food, for my cat’s food, manicure,  cosmetics and hair by myself. Trust me, it’s superhard in Russia – to be an art person 24/7 and to pay your basic needs by yourself. Survival regime is always on.

Which people or companies would I like to work with in 2021?
I would definitely love to sign the contract with the international musical label. To make an international tour with my band! I did solo, now it’s my team’s time:) I can’t name someone specific, though.

Which people in my profession who can make a real difference in my creative career would i love to meet in 2021?
Musical producers, magazines, blogs – there are hundreds of them, but appearance in “Rolling Stone” mag would be such a supergreat thing:)

What project, in 2021, am I looking forward to work on?
I want to record with my band at least 3 songs we already wrote, so we just have to record it in studio. I also want to get in one huge music festival. The first video with our song is in production now, we’re gonna upload it soon and promote.
So it means I have no more plans on burlesque or cabaret shows. I think I’ve done with that as a producer and host too. Only music bothers me.

Where can you see me or my work in 2021?
Social networks first of all of course:)
instagram.com/aliceshpiller
instagram.com/richter_scales (my music band)
Facebook.com/aliceshpiller
TikTok: @aliceshpiller
my band’s EPK: showalice.wixsite.com/richterscales-epk

And: showalice.wixsite.com/rocknroll-eng

And you can also listen to singles released with my “Richter Scales” band:
https://band.link/rFA6b
https://band.link/88k6L

If you like our music – be sure you follow our Instagram page, because there will be a lot of posts about our first official video!

What do the words “Passion Never Retires” mean to me?
It is about being young. If you are passionate about something, If you have goals to achieve, it means you have a whole life ahead! So the passion stays. You can taste life, feel every minute of it.

Which creative heroines should Peter invite to tell their story?
I can definitely recommend a good friend of mine – Katrin Gajndr, she is the true queen of burlesque!
Also I can recommend three great photographers, one of them is also the designer, another one owns her studio, and the third one is well-known artist (she makes photos as an art, painting).

How can you contact me?
Social networks + you can write an e-mail:) alisashpiller@gmail.com

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