Maya Preece started Dragonsfly with Daygan Robinson in 1998 after they met at a music festival in the Forest of Dean, and played bagpipes and mandolin together. Maya had previously been singing with the band “Heathens All”, who’s sublime 13 part harmonies were particularly popular on road protest sites! She also sang with Billy Bragg on his comeback tour in 1995, and Daevid Allen from Gong, as part of his band in 2000.
Maya’s passion for singing and performing started at an early age. She has always enjoyed singing in different languages, and loves the different harmony styles and scrumptious sounds in songs from Bulgaria to India, and languages from Hebrew to indigenous Peruvian.
Through her travels to West Africa, India and Nepal and her own esoteric studies, Maya has gathered a wealth of vocal training and inspiration (as well as personal experience), which have all influenced her song-writing. Her songs have been described as uplifting, powerful and even life-changing and are delivered beautifully through her rich, unusual and enticing voice.
Her on-stage performance is compelling, as she encourages audiences to participate through her natural warmth and ability to reach out and connect. She also teaches vocal meditations and folk songs from around the world to individuals and groups in workshops, encouraging people to find their true naked voice.
When Maya visited the Instrument Makers Festival of St. Chartier, central France in 1997, she discovered a love for bagpipes and bought her own set – the Fat Kitchen pipes – in the grounds of the chateau. She later traded these in for a set of Jonathan Swayne’s English Border pipes in the key of G, which she still plays today. While at the festival she also discovered a passion for the dances of the different regions of France and Brittany, and she now teaches these dances to varied participants at workshops and gigs.
As well as teaching singing, dancing and piano, Maya also plays the guitar and recorders as well as the pipes and vocals. Amongst her collection of instruments are such things as a shruti box, a charango, a ukelele and melodica, all of which she plays for her own personal musical enjoyment and discovery.
Maya looks forward to meeting you all and sharing her music with you.