My favorite Russian all-girl pop group is Blestyashchiye! What's yours?
Blestyashchie (Russian: Блестящие) is one of the first and most enduring all-girl singing groups in Russia.
Originally Blestyashchie consisted of three girls: Olga Orlova, Polina Iodis, and Varvara Koroleva. In 1996 Janna Friske and Irina Lukjanova joined the group when Varvara Koroleva left the group right after the release of their first album Tam, Tol'ko Tam (There, Only There).
Featuring original arrangements, lovely lyrics, and artistic music videos, Blestyashchie became quite popular. They went on tour across the country, and they were highly praised. There, Janna became an instant success with her excellent vocal abilities and superb dancing skills.
In 1997 they released the album Tam, Tol'ko Tam (remixes). With the new lineup, Blestyashchie released their second album Prosto Mechti (Simply Dreams). This album included such musical best sellers, "Gde Zhe Ti Gde?", "Oblaka", and "Cha-Cha-Cha". In 1998, Polina Iodis left the group and the three remaining girls continued to work together.
In August 1999, Xenia Novikova joined Blestyashchie. They released a new album in 2000, titled O Lyubvi (About Love). The album featured ten new songs, one of which, "Ciao Bambina", was named the most "provocative" clip of year. The hit "Za Osen'yu Pridet Zima" was another single from O Lyubvi. The group won many awards that year, and went on tour in cities of Russia, the countries of the Near abroad, and abroad.
In 2000, Olga Orlova (the front member and the songwriter of the songs that made Blestyashchie famous) became pregnant and left the group.
Janna Friske is considered the leader of the group, publicity director, and oversees that girls communicate "daily".
In their 'free time' the four members wrote songs for their next album, Za Chetyre Morya (Beyond Four Seas) (2002). The first hit from the album was the memorable "A Ya Vse Letala", the video played continuously on all music channels.
In 2003 Irina Lukyanova became pregnant and left the group. Later on Blestyashchie was joined by the figure skating champion Anna Semenovich.
Apelcinoviy Rai (Orange Paradise) (2003) was an extraordinary success and left its mark on the year. The last hit song off the album, "Novogodnaya Pesnya", became a true anthem that goes to the heart of winter holidays at the year's end, and the earlier hit song "Apelcinovie Rai" the summer anthem.
On April 1, 2004 Friske was replaced by Nadia Ruchka. When asked the question how she joined group Blestyashchie, Nadia answered so: "It is very simple. My friend called and told that Blestyashchie wanted me to audition. My previous band just had just broken up. And 'Blest' was searching for new members. But was on first of April (April Fools' Day), and I mistook the offer as a joke. Therefore I said: 'Please, you will not joke. I do not wish to listen to such silly jokes. You will come home, and we shall talk.' At first I joined in group on a trial period. I have started to go a little with girls by tour. Stepped onstage in two-three numbers. Then I began to participate in recording songs."
In the group, Nadia was well accepted. "If there are any questions, we find it easy to communicate," the singer tells. "Everyone understands, the work is complex. Now the trial my period has ended, therefore I work on full power."