Tell us about your path in music thus far. How did you begin? Who have you worked with?

I have been singing since I was 3 years old and most of my earliest childhood memories are tied to music. I come from a musical household, but both my parents had to give up on their dreams when we moved to the US from Ukraine. They gave up their dreams so I could have a chance at mine. They introduced me to the love of music before I was even born. From the age of four I began studying classical voice, piano and violin. Later I acquired additional training from the Berklee College of Music. I never had a doubt in my mind of what I wanted to do in life. I always strived to work with people whom I admire and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to work with talents such as Oscar, Grammy, and Golden Globe-nominated songwriter Jud Friedman, Grammy-nominated Marco Marinengeli, world-renowned composer/producer Rick Allison, and pianist/songwriter Jeff Franzel.

How was this song created? What is it about?

Alone was written by myself and the amazing composer Rick Allison a few years ago. It was the first piece of music we worked on and it is what began our musical collaboration. Rick was someone I looked up to from a very young age. His music captivated my heart and played an immense role in shaping me into the artist I am. It was a dream of mine to create something with him. The collaboration happened after I recorded a hit song of his ‘Je T’aime’ ( took 967 takes due to malfunctioning equipment and my quest to make it near perfect). I decided to take a chance and email it to him. About a YEAR later – I received a reply that brought me to tears – because he wrote how much my rendition had moved him. When we began writing together we both wanted to not only create a song – but something truly amazing. We wanted it to be real and for the melody and words to truly touch others. The song tells a story of a child who was able to overcome unimaginable odds, stand on his own two feet and go on to fill the world with indescribable beauty. The final touches were brought by mastering engineer Evgeniyy Kochubey (Gean Koach).

Are there any more interesting facts you would like to share about the song or sources of inspiration for writing it?

The song was written in 1 day. It was one of the most wonderful and terrifying experiences of my life. Wonderful – because it was one of the first times I was able to create music in a way and with someone where I did not have to make any sacrifices or adjustment to the type of artist I want to be. I did not have to adjust to fit what the “market” wants, but rather wrote completely from the heart. Terrifying because – before doing this – I doubted if I could. Writing with Rick was one of the most natural and genuine experiences of my life. I trusted his talent because I knew of the magic he was capable of. We drew inspiration for the song from many long talks, shared stories and the desire to create something timeless, something that can act as a guiding light to others in their time of need.

How and where was the music video filmed?

The music video was filmed in the Mojave Desert (Harper Dry Lake), California. It was a shoot comprised of 2 (18+ hour) days, but the location and experience was phenomenal. There is something truly special about being ‘alone’ in a desert (no pun intended). But really, it was the perfect location to convey the emotion of the song.

How did the idea come about and who directed the clip?

This song is very special to me and I really couldn’t have dreamed of a better team to bring this music video to life. It was very important for me to be able to convey all the details and nuances of this piece and I knew this could only be done if everything was a perfect fit. My manager Svetlana Hachiyan and I began brainstorming the best way to tell the story and then we brought brilliant director Maria Skakun on board. Little by little amongst the 3 of us all the pieces started coming together. Between the film crew (Justin Knodel, Alex Tobias, Edward Asaturov), dancer (Danielle King), stylist (Maria Ilina), and makeup artists (Heather Albert & Kate Starkey), clip editor (Dima Skakun) every single person was simply a master of their craft. I could not imagine the final product without each and every single one of them. It is heartwarming to look back and see all the elements and know it was all accomplished by such a talented, caring, professional and wonderful team.

Where there and interesting moments or funny outtakes when filming?

Our days started at 4 am and ended past 1 am. But everyone gave 100% all the time. Breakfast, lunch and dinner was laid out in the trunks of our cars. The bathroom was quite an interesting ‘location’ too – with no running water. Temperatures ranged from low 30 to upper 80’s within a few hours. Sunsets were MAGICAL. I was wearing a huge parachute dress which was about 20 feet in diameter. For some of the shoot people had to hold the edges of the skirt while remaining out of frame, at other times it acted as a good blanket for people to lay down on :).

What do you want to convey through this song and the music video?

The story came with the premise of showing a transformation that can come by the overcoming of almost impossible odds. The video aim is to portray a young girl who is met with a life of solitude. When her childhood world begins to crumble, she uses all her power within to overcome the circumstances she was placed in. She walks away from and overcomes the misfortune she faced while finding a way to hold on to the magic she had in her heart when she was little. I wanted to convey that turning pain into strength with purpose is possible and that such determination can help one escape darkness and in turn add light and beauty to the world around.

What are your future plans?

I have a Russian version of this song planned for release shortly and another upcoming single and video (which I am very excited for) late May – early June.

What thoughts would you like to leave our viewers with?

I hope this song can be a beacon for those who need courage. I want others to see that they have an immeasurable power inside themselves and to inspire them to move forward with strength and perseverance even in unimaginable adversity. Believe in yourself, believe even when it seems unbelievable. You are not alone!

STREAM/FOLLOW

Markets – https://td.dinalayzis.com/AloneStream
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/dina_layzis/

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