This elegant and warm Italian lady is the founder of The Puppini Sisters, the lead singer of Marcella and The Forget Me Nots, a singer-songwriter, a radio presenter on Shoreditch Radio and an orchestra conductor. Ladies and gentleman, the one and only Marcella Puppini!
Q : What do you like most about your profession?
The most obvious thing is that I do what I love most and what I have always dreamed of. I also love that I am constantly learning and being challenged. I have never got to the point where I thought “ok, this is it”. There’s always more to come, more to be accomplished.
Q : Who are your musical influences?
From Opera to Hip Hop, from Kate Bush to Billie Holiday, from Jacques Brel to Frank Ocean, I love any music with drama and soul. I don’t stick to a particular genre, and I love to discover new, weird things. When I was a kid I played the piano and I used to dream of being an opera singer; then I discovered Jazz and Trip-Hop, and I was completely hooked.
Q : What did you do before you got into the music industry?
I first trained as a Fashion Designer at Central St Martins College of Art, and worked for Vivienne Westwood for a couple of years before going back to school and graduating in Jazz Performance and Composition at Trinity College of Music.
Q : Who are some of your favourite composers and musicians?
David Bowie, Tom Waits, Kate Bush, Massive Attack, Schoenberg, Nick Cave, Diamanda Galas, Nina Hagen, Nina Simone, Manhattan Transfer, Duke Ellington and Portishead
Q : If you could go back in time, what would you do differently?
I would try and do everything exactly as I did it (bar a couple of boyfriend and bar jobs I had long ago….), but without the insecurity I felt when I was younger.
Q : What’s the side of you that the public never sees?
Well, I am usually quite open on social media, but often people are surprised to find out that I love zombies and hip-hop, that I can extremely goofy around people I know very well, and that I prefer PVC to vintage clothing.
Q : As an artist, how would you define success?
Being appreciated for what you do, and making a living out of it.
Q : Is there any song that will always move you emotionally?
Gosh, there are so many! There’s one Italian song that I cannot sing without tears streaming down my cheeks. It’s called La Prima Cosa Bella, and my dad used to sing it to me. Also Ne Me Quitte Pas, sung by Nina Simone. And Frank Ocean’s Bad Religion. And Wild Is The Wind, sung by David Bowie. And many, many more.
Q : How would you describe your perfect day? What do you do to relax?
I love lying in the park with a book when it’s sunny and warm, or singing loud songs with a group of friends.
Sometimes I just go for a walk and stop to smell flowers, or I dance around the flat.
I very rarely get bored, as I can take pleasure in very simple things.
I also love dressing up outrageously to go to a party, or cooking four-course dinners for big groups of friends.
Q : Where would you like to find yourself in ten years?
Hmmmm….President of Italy? Living in California and writing novels? I don’t know, there are still so many things I want to do!
Q : What was the most important day of your life?
There have been many. The day I decided to come to London to “seek my fortune”, the day I decided to leave Vivienne Westwood to pursue my dream of being a musician, the day I got married, and then many more.
Q : What else can we expect from you in the future?
I am learning to be a music producer, so I might start getting involved in more and more behind-the-scenes work.