MACHA (MARIA) MATALAEV is an award-winning translator, concert pianist, and literary scholar based in Paris, France. She is a co-founder and core faculty member of the Paris Institute for Critical Thinking (PICT).
Macha’s translations have tackled a range of fields from history to politics to literature. Her 2015 book, Valentin Berlinsky: Le quatuor d’une vie (Aedam Musicae), was awarded the “Prix du Témoignage” at the 2016 Prix des Muses. Translated into English as Valentin Berlinsky: A Quartet for Life (Kahn & Averill), the book was included by BBC Music Magazine in its 2019 list of Best Classical Music Book Releases.
Macha’s translation projects include L’urbanisme informel : au-delà du droit à la ville by Jean-Jacques Perrin and Ina Wagner (Presses des Ponts, 2023), Daughter of the Revolution by Vera Broido (Allia, forthcoming), and A Vindication of the Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft (Flammarion, forthcoming). A native speaker of Russian and French, Macha translates from and into both languages as well as English and Spanish.
Macha has also worked on script translations for a number of films, including Amparo by Simón Mesa Soto, winner of the 2021 Rising Star Award at the Critics’ Week of the Cannes Film Festival and the 2021 Silver Hugo Award at the Chicago International Film Festival, and Tantas Almas by Nicolás Rincón Gille, winner of the 2020 German Camera Award and the 2019 Etoile d’Or for Best Film at the Marrakech International Film Festival.
An award-winning concert pianist, Macha started performing with orchestras at age 15 and has since performed as a soloist or chamber musician in various countries, including at the Wigmore Hall (London), the Gaveau and Cortot Halls (Paris), and the Great and Small Halls of the Moscow Conservatory.
Beyond translating and performing, Macha has worked as an exhibition curator (“The Music of a Lifetime,” devoted to Valentin Berlinsky), production manager for musicians and ensembles such as the Secession Orchestra, and professeur certifié, teaching modern literature at various collèges in the Paris region.
Macha is the Managing Director of PICT, a position she has held since co-founding the institute in 2018. She has been a driving force behind the institute’s activities, from establishing PICT as a non-profit association registered with the French state to spearheading the French PICT initiative, through which she curates and edits the Francophone content of PICT.
To find out more about Macha, check out her:
PICT Public Lectures
- Le jour où mon mari fut emprisonné par les Talibans (French PICT)
- Le Quatuor Borodine en tournée (French PICT)
- L’esprit Gezi : La possibilité d’une impossibilité (French PICT)
- The Borodin Quartet on Tour (The Faculty Lounge)