Oksana circa 2011
|Born||Oksana Yurievna Kolesnikova
|Occupation||Russian-American Concert Pianist and Composer; Owner, Oksana's School of Music and Oksana's School of Foreign Languages|
Oksana Yurievna Kolesnikova (Oksana K, Pianist Oksana) (born 1978) is a Russian-American composer, concert pianist and entrepreneur. Her primary residence is in Beverly Hills, California. In addition to concerts and television performances, she performed regularly at the Polo Lounge in The Beverly Hills Hotel since 2006 and recorded several CDs of classical, new age, and popular music including original compositions and collaborations with other international musical artists. She is the owner of Oksana School of Music and Oksana's School of Foreign Languages. Both are headquartered in Los Angeles, California. Her performances on YouTube have been viewed more than 1.5 million times on her channel, "Oksanabella." In 2009, her public recognition increased dramatically when she was erroneously identified internationally in the media as the romantic partner of actor and director Mel Gibson.
Oksana Kolesnikova was born in Barnaul in Altai Siberia, USSR. She studied classical piano in Russia from the age of five. Following the break-up of the Soviet Union, she immigrated with her family to the United States in 1993 at the age of 15. Her family settled in St. Petersburg, Florida. After entering St. Petersburg College, Kolesnikova won the Florida State Young Artists Symposium Competition in 1999. The award earned her a scholarship to attend Florida State University. She graduated with honors from the School of Music, Florida State University, in August 2001. She received her U.S. Citizenship on January 18, 2006.
During her coursework at Florida State University and after graduation, Kolesnikova performed throughout Florida, where she was seen by an executive at HSN (Home Shopping Network). She was asked to perform on the television network and returned regularly, gathering a national following of fans. She was featured on Adrienne Arpel's HSN show.
In 2003, Kolesnikova became the first Russian-American female pianist to travel overseas to entertain the U.S. Troops. She made two world tours on behalf of the Morale, Welfare and Recreation Department (MWR) of the U.S. Navy. She made a solo tour to entertain the U.S. Troops in September 2003, stopping in Italy, Spain and Greece. In February 2004, she went to Asia, including stops in Guam, Korea, Japan, Okinawa, and Singapore with Navy MWR. She also was invited to perform for U.N. officials in New York City. Following her tours, she moved to Los Angeles, California.
She has recorded eight CDs of original, classical and popular music and her own instructional video for students of piano. Her “Free Floating” CD won the “2010 Best Classical Album of the Year” on Solo Piano.com. She has collaborated with other international musical artists for recordings, and her original compositions have been chosen by international artists to record on their own CDs. Her CD, "Best of Two Worlds," evolved from a collaboration with notable fine artist Jim Warren, who created his own art series based on Kolesnikova's compositions.
"Oksanabella," Kolesnikova's YouTube channel featuring her performances, has more than one million upload views from all over the world.
Smile Train Music Collection Volume One. (2011) Profits of this CD benefiting non-profit Smile Train. International artists interpret Kolesnikova. Featuring John Georgiadis, Silvia Vicinelli. Composer: Oksana Kolesnikova
Magical Journey. (2010) Classical; New Age. Composer: Oksana Kolesnokova
Best of Two Worlds. (2007) Classical; Greatest Hits
Freedom - Dedicated to the U.S. Troops. (2004) Featuring: Byron J., Jim Buxton, Ugo De Ambrogio. Composers: Zequinha De Abreu, Paul Anka, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Eduardo Capua, Deep Purple, Gareth Whitehurst, J. Byron, Oksana Kolesnikova, Francis Lai, Oksana Kolesnikova / Jj /, Jimmy Page, Matos Rodriguez, John Stafford Smith, Andrew Lloyd Webber
Angelic Winters. (2002) Featuring: Erik Kolesnikov, Sofia Kolesnikova. Composers: Johann Sebastian Bach, Ludwig Van Beethoven, Scott Joplin, Vittorio Monti, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Johann Pachelbel, Sergei Rachmaninov, Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, Russian Traditional
Free Floating. (2002) Classical, New Age. Composer: Oksana Kolesnikova
Oksana. (2000) Featuring: Erik Kolesnikov, Sofia Kolesnikova. Composers: Ludwig Van Beethoven, Frédéric Chopin, Muzio Clementi, Claude Debussy, Michal Kleofas Oginski, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Sergei Rachmaninov, Robert Schumann, Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
International media coverage of Kolesnikova includes television appearances on PBS with Scott Houston, “The Piano Guy,” on HSN (Home Shopping Network) as a performer and a business woman, and featured as “Woman of the Week”on CBS Los Angeles. As a musician and teacher, she has been written about in The New York Times and, as a performer and composer, has been featured on the cover of Hollywood Weekly and Imago Magazine, among others.
She gained additional, world-wide attention in April 2009 after erroneous but wide-spread, initial news reports on television, the Internet, and in print identified her as being romantically involved with the married actor and director Mel Gibson . Kolesnikova's striking appearance, high-profile piano performances in Beverly Hills, and regular, close proximity to Gibson and other Hollywood power brokers during lunch meetings at the Polo Lounge led members of the media and press to assume without confirmation that she was Gibson's unidentified girlfriend known only as a musician named "Oksana." The media frenzy that followed created serious publicity and privacy issues for Kolesnikova, who was married to her manager, Alessandro Concas, for nine years and was four months pregnant at the time of the news stories.
Kolesnikova has dedicated much of her time, music, and sales of CDs to charitable causes, including environmental concerns through "Cool Green Fashion for Forests" and children with cleft palate through Smile Train.
- Scheiber, Dave. "Oksana's American Dream." St. Petersburg Times. October 14, 2002."" Accessed June 27, 2011.
- "Pianist Oksana & Silvia Vicinelli Collaborate on Pop-Classical "Aurora"." Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce. July 8, 2008. ""
- Cross, Anthony. "Music Lessons for Life."Tolucan Times. March 16, 2011. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Hammel, Sara. "Mel Gibson's Girlfriend: Mystery Solved?" People.com. Time Inc. in partnership with CNN. April 18, 2009. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Herald wire services. Pianist Oksana Kolesnikova claims she’s not key to Mel Gibson’s breakup."Boston Herald.com. the Boston Herald and Herald Media. April 15, 2009. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Scheiber, Dave. "Oksana's American Dream." St. Petersburg Times. October 14, 2002."". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Florida State Community College Music Symposium Award Plaque."". Retrieved July 2011.
- Rutx, Paul X. "Newly American Pianist Loves Entertaining Troops." American Forces Press Service. January 24, 2006.. Retrieved July 5, 2011.
- Video. HSN.". Retrieved July 3, 2011.
- Collazo, Krystal. "Internationally Renown Composer 'Oksana' Makes a Special Guest Appearance on 'Live Prayer with Bill Keller' Wednesday, November 15th." 'Christian News Wire'. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Rutz, Paul X. "Babe Boffo With Boys Overseas!" America's North Shore Journal. American Forces Press Service. January 25, 2006. ""
- Rutz, Paul X. "America Supports You: Newly American Pianist Loves Entertaining Troops." American Forces Press Service. U.S. Department of Defense. Jan 24, 2006. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- "Oksana K: Breath of Fresh Air In The Music World." July 24, 2006.". Retrieved June 27, 22011.
- "Beauty and Talent in the heart of Salento." Communicato Stampa "" Oksana performs in Italy at the Salento International Film Festival. Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- "" Oksana performs at St. Petersburg Pier in Tampa Bay, Florida.
- ""Oksana performs at Beverly Hills AIDS fundraising event honoring Holland Taylor, Dr. David Hardy and Barbara Lazaroff.
- "Classical Album of the Year" SoloPiano.com "". Retrieved June 30, 2011.
- "Oksana Kolesnikova: German Pavarotti to sing Aurora Fantasy." Tokafi. June 17, 2008. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Jim Warren Studios website . Retrieved July 13, 2011.
- CBS video of their clip Woman of the Week featuring Oksana, "The People's Pianist." ""
- "No Wallet Necessary." NewYorkTimes.com. March 21, 2010. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Hollywood Weekly Cover. July 2008. Photo: C. Ameruoso. "". Retrieved July 3, 2011.
- Imago Magazine Cover.Issue 2, Vol 5. "". Retrieved July 3, 2011.
- Harrington, Cara. "Oksana Kolesnikova, Mel Gibson’s Mistress – Photos and Video" Hollywood Dame. April 14, 2009. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- Boyle, Christina. "Oksana No. 4 seen behind Mel Gibson's door." New York Daily News. April 19, 2009. ""
- "Zangeres ontkent affaire Mel Gibson" NU.nl onderdeel van het netwerk van Sanoma Media Netherlands groep. April 14, 2009. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- "Oksana Kolesnikova is Pregnant and She is Happily Married and Not Having an Affair with Mel Gibson." "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- "Oksana Joins Cool Green Fashion for Forests as Spokesperson." "http://www.coolgreenfashionforforests.org/news/2008_0808_oksana_joins.html". Retrieved June 27, 2011.
- "Musicians Hitting the High Note for Smile Train." Smile Train Stories April 27, 2011. "". Retrieved June 28, 2011.
- "Composer, Pianist’s Latest CD Helps Bring Smiles To Children" Beverly Hills Courier. "". Retrieved June 27, 2011.