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Ksenia Valenti

Ksenia Valenti 1 Photo

Ksenia Valenti loves pop music.

The daughter of a guitar player and a pianist, she was born and raised next to the

Sea of Japan in the tiny port town of Nakhodka, Russia – the Easternmost stop for

passengers on the Trans-Siberian Railway.  It was her father who introduced her to

Queen’s classic record Bohemian Rhapsody by playing it loudly, and on repeat in

their household – it was her first introduction to Western music.

As a child, she was a precocious performer, and would create and direct shows for

an audience of family and friends during her birthday parties. Herself a classically-

trained pianist by the age of 6, Ksenia was entering music competitions and beauty

pageants at 13. She didn’t win the local singing contest on her first attempt, but was

indeed successful on her second try…  “You’d never win anything in a bigger city!”

her brother playfully reminded her.  She proved him wrong when she appeared as a

finalist on the national Russian television show “Sing If You Can,” where she

performed for large audiences under intense pressure. Ksenia was a rising star in

her high school’s Comedy Club where she wrote and performed comedy sketches,

being awarded the Funniest Girl of the Year.  Ksenia’s passion for performing

eventually paid off as a full scholarship at Far Eastern Federal University in

Vladivostok, where she traveled the country performing traditional Russian songs.

Her studies as an advertising and music student continued on in St. Petersburg,

where she was awarded her academic BF degree from St. Petersburg Technological

University in advertising + communications while simultaneously engaging in

rigorous vocal, acting, and film training at the prestigious University of Culture and

Arts.

In 2009, Ksenia arrived Stateside on a whirlwind visit. She made stops in New York

City, Las Vegas, and San Diego – but was only enamored with Los Angeles, the same

city she’d been inspired by while watching the television series “Baywatch” as a

teenager.  Though she had been kicked out onto the street from being a houseguest,

Ksenia’s luck changed as she asked strangers for directions to the nearest motel.  

The first friendly direction-giver turned out to be accomplished music producer

Mario Marchetti.  This random street corner meeting became Ksenia’s introduction

to a US-based music career.

Now permanently relocated to Los Angeles, Ksenia continues to work with

Marchetti and songwriter Gino Barletta, creating rhythmic, pop records based on

the narrative of her life.  In 2013, she earned a Master of Fine Arts from the New

York Film Academy, having studied acting for film with industry veteran Brenda

Vaccaro, Meisner technique with Anthony Montes, acting technique with George

Russo, Voice with George McGrath, Comedy and Improvisation classes with co-

founder of groundlings Suzanne Kent and Commercial technique with Ken Lerner.

Her thesis project “Mama Doesn’t Know Best” featured Ksenia as writer, actress,

producer and songwriter in a comedic musical performance.  Directed by John

Heath, it is currently in the film festival circuit around the globe and has already

been honored as an official selection at the Playhouse West Film Festival, 2014 Los

Angeles Movie Award, Berlin Short Film Festival and at the FilmQuest Film Festival

, where Ksenia was nominated for Best Actress. A lifelong learner, Ksenia continues

her creative education by being enrolled in writing classes at UCLA’s Extension

program, studies comedy improv at IO West, works on her acting with acting coach

Robert D’Avanzo, and participates in workshops led by top industry professionals.

Ksenia is a tremendous fan of Woody Allen’s- his writing, filmmaking, and

knowledge of human behavior. One of her biggest dreams is to star in a film of his.

“I feel unleashed!” Ksenia describes as she reflects on her journey from her tiny

hometown at the edge of Russia.  Now thriving amongst the talent and creativity of

Hollywood, she’s living a dream she’d previously thought impossible, prompting

memories of those iconic opening lyrics by Queen: “Is this the real life…?  Is this just

fantasy…?” and words from the band’s legendary front-man:

 

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