"I never thought that I would work in a jazz orchestra. Either a combination of circumstances or perhaps fate determined this musical direction which later became very important to me. I studied in the Gnesin Higher Music College for four years and was looking for work. I was nineteen when quite unexpectedly, a friend told me that Anatoly Kroll was forming a new orchestra and if I was not against singing jazz, I would have a good chance of being accepted by this brilliant musician. I decided to take a chance.

I had a great desire to study jazz, swing, improvisation, to experiment with different rhythms. This is how I ended up in the orchestra. I have already worked in Anatoliy Kroll`s "Big Band" for five years. In 1994 we took part in a musical festival in Paris and took an unforgettable trip to Montreaux for a jazz festival. We appeared with world-famous stars, such as Bobby McFerrin, M-People, Natalie Cole, and Petrucciani. I went to a reception at Miles Davis's house-museum and was amazed by the pictures he had painted. My acquaintance with Natalie Cole and her wishes to achieve great success left an indelible mark on me. At the Russian Studio "Union" in November of 1996, three compact discs of our orchestra were released, containing the music of Glen Miller, and jazz themes of Prokofiev and Musorgsky, all performed by the orchestra's soloists. I am on the cover of one of these CDs, entitled "Only Girls In Jazz". Now I combine both my work in the orchestra and my solo music project with modeling. For the time being, this works out well for me. In June of 1997 I appeared on the cover of the New York Times magazine that featured a story about five different Russians.

After the release of her first album, Maria performed in a variety of cities across Russia such as Samara, Novosibirsk, Tomsk, St-Petersburg and Tallinn. On September 5th, 1997 during her concert dedicated to the 850th birthday of Moscow, she was awarded a diploma by the government for her musical contribution to the city. Maria performed with English singer Sam Brown at a very successful concert in the Moscow club Golden Palace .

In February 1998, Maria and Anatoly Kroll performed at the Minsk Jazz Festival where musicians took part from Slavic countries around the world.

She was also a special guest on many television programs. In the summer of 1998, Maria along with Alexei Kortnev co-hosted the opening of The World Youth Olympic Games in Moscow.