Maia’s childhood dream was to become a ballerina and she took ballet classes for 10 years between the ages of 6 and 16. She then went through a rebellious teenager stage and decided to give it all up as she thought that spending 4 hours a day practising wasn’t cool enough!

Not really knowing what she wanted to do with her life, she decided to study psychology on a whim. After submitting her application to the university, she realised that she had accidentally applied for political science instead, but decided that perhaps it was meant to be and so accepted her place on the course nonetheless. The university offered a second degree in English to all political science students, and Maia enjoyed the English and French classes so much that she decided to become a professional linguist.

After graduating, she followed her dream and started working as a professional translator before deciding to move from the cold temperatures of St Petersburg to the much sunnier climate of Milan to study Italian. While there, Maia had to pick up the lingo rather promptly as no one there seemed to speak much English. She enjoyed living the dolce vita for almost 2 years until she moved to London, where she joined Mother Tongue shortly afterwards.

Likes: travelling, knitting, George Michael, being nerdy

Dislikes: overcrowded tubes, persimmons

Mother tongue: Russian

Other languages: English, Italian, Ukrainian