Assia Ahhatt is a beautiful talented violinist from the Ukraine who made her music debut at the Green Valley Ranch Hotel Casino on October 8, 2011 with Chris Botti. Chris Botti, a Grammy Award winning trumpet player invited Assia to be a guest violinist at his concert for her first appearance in the US.
Assia, a great musical and vocal talent has mastered the violin. She has been playing since she was five years old. At first she wasn’t a willing student and said that playing the violin was like work for her and many times did not want to practice. After all these years she is happy that she continued with her violin playing and she now entertains the world with her excellence and striking beauty. It is mesmerizing to look at her and watch her perform. http://www.assiaahhatt.com/
The Music Journalists Association of Ukraine gave the prestigious “Best Show” award to Assia and she has also won many international violin contests. Her songs in Russian, Polish and French have been released in an album in 2003 and this year will release a new CD.
It was a great night of entertainment as Lisa Fisher; an R & B singer sang her heart out. Lisa has been with Chris for two years as a guest artist with Botti’s band.
After the concert Assia sat with me for a private interview and I asked her about her childhood and how she started playing the violin. She really wanted to be a ballerina and study dancing and was interested in the violin. She said it was not Childs play, but a lot of work and as it became more difficult she didn’t want to practice. She lived with her grandmother, who she loved very much and Assia was an obedient child so she listened to her violin teachers when they told her not to go on vacations and stay home and practice. Her teacher promised her parents that Assia would be in international competitions. At nine years old she entered a specialized charter school for music and then on to Technical Schools.
Assia is married to Igor Balenko and they have two sons who love music but have no interest in playing any instruments. Their interests are in sports and other activities and she won’t push them into anything because she remembers how difficult it was not to have a normal childhood and a lot of tears. She did add that she is very happy she was forced to play the violin and that everything turned out like this. An interesting fact that she added was that none of her violin teachers taught their children to play the violin. The violin is the most difficult instrument to play.
I asked Assia what she wanted people to know about her and she said that she writes her own music and she sings. As we were ending the interview Chris Botti stopped in her dressing room to say good night and a thank you for a great evening.
Assia & Chris
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