Who is Ana Shine

On 6 September 2019, USSR born singer, songwriter and performer Ana Shine will realise a lifelong dream by releasing her debut single When I Was A Girl. The autobiographical track highlights the desire she had to pursue music when she was just five years old and the battles she has overcome to get to this point.

Born in the USSR, Ana Shine was just five years old when she developed a dream to play the violin. Seeing violinists all the time on TV in the Soviet Union she was inspired to learn the instrument and was taken to music school by her grandmother. Sadly her dream ended when her parents were unable to afford the required new violin she would need every year or so. 

Growing up

Despite her family wanting to see a musician amongst them Ana also discovered sport through her father. With her long legs, which would once again support her later in life, she became a great sprinter. From the age of 11 to 15 Ana developed the ability to train hard, even getting up at 5am to get a train, and learnt how hard work would help her achieve goals from an early age.

However, when she was 15 life changed for Ana taking her in a different direction entirely. Her parents divorce meant that she had to move with her mother into a tiny one bedroom flat in Voroshilovgrad and she had no choice but to turn all her attention to supporting and helping her mum in order to survive, taking up modelling aged 15. 

Ana explains: ”I owe so much to my mum and the support that she gave me. She sacrificed a lot of her life for me. I am an only child, but only because my brother died two days after birth, she went through the divorce and lost both her parents and still kept it together for me. I felt like I owed it to her.”

Always eager to improve herself Ana signed on with a modelling agency and by the time she was 16 she was asked to move to Moscow, which she did with her mother, to give her the best opportunity. It was a career with great success but wasn’t what she really wanted to do.

How I got here

“I did editorial and catwalk work for the likes of Gucci, Armani, Dolce & Gabbana,” explains Ana. “My mum thought it was terrible. She wanted me to graduate, finish my education and go to university, but for me I knew we needed the money. It worked and even though it was hard I was able to study in what free time I had. I enjoyed it and it gave me the love of fashion that I have today, but it was just a job, a means to an end.”

Eventually having earned enough money modelling, Ana took her mums advice and stopped modelling to get a Masters degree. It was a decision she would never regret. The course taught her all about digital currency and between 2011 and 2013 she started to invest in Bitcoin using the money she’d made modelling. It would change her life forever.

The beginning

Her investments were so successful that in 2015 Ana managed to move herself and her mother to England, buying a house in London’s Hampstead, with one thought in mind – to realise her lifelong dream for music.

“The UK was the perfectly place for me to achieve my goal. There is such a rich musical history in the UK and even recently I got to film my first video in Manchester. I wanted to write and focus on my singing and performing. I was introduced to the incredible David Grant and his wife Carrie, and working with them and their encouragement has been inspiring.”

Meeting Eliot

Most recently Ana was introduced to Eliot Kennedy who worked with Celine Dion, The Spice Girls and Take That to name just a few. He is now her producer and helps her write and develop her music.

“It’s amazing that the track that will be my first single is a reflection of my life. When I Was A Girl takes me all the way back to that first moment I wanted to do music. I have a varied musical taste and love R&B, but I still listen to a lot of classical music too. However, the violin will always be special to me. Eliot Kennedy even said to me recently that every time I hear strings I start to smile. He has helped me put that smile into my music.”

Ana Shine’s When I Was A Girl is released on 6 September 2019.