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SADO OPERA are famous for their live shows, makeup masks and songs like ‘Russian Anal Game’. We got naked with the mysterious front person Katya of the queer rock band that was born in Russia and bloomed in Berlin.

Text: Filip Sandström Beijer

Photos: Oona Oikkonen

You said in an interview in 2018 that you always do rehearsals naked.

We love the idea, but we have to ask: Why?

“You’ll be surprised to know, but we also always give interviews naked and invite

journalists to get naked with us too. It is not a secret. We also said this in some

interviews earlier. Of course, we never insist but we did it many times and mostly all

journalists joined the game. So now, it’s up to you...”

“Why? It’s as simple as that: being naked is like a symbol of being sincere. When you

talk, you want to trust the one you talk to. The same is with rehearsals. First, we have

to make sure to get rid of all the artificial and unnecessary layers, to be honest and true.

When you’re ready with that, you can dress and apply make-up to highlight your

message. But not to hide something behind your mask.”

How was it being a queer rock band in St Petersburg when it all started?

“The good thing was that we got a lot of attention. The bad thing was that attention

was not always positive. Sometimes it was even dangerous. There were always some people whose homophobic and conservative feelings were triggered and they wanted to explain to us that what we were doing was wrong and ‘against the rules’. On the other hand, we were never bored having those discussions with our opponents. Sometimes we succeeded and were happy to see the transformation at least

from the pure aggression to a possibility of a respectful conversation."

“The queer community around us was giving us energy and inspiration to keep going.

The feeling of unity was our fuel: in our songs and shows we were and still are telling

stories of many other likeminded people.

How come you decided to move to Berlin?

”Our main base is Wilde Renate - the club that became our second home. We

started performing there in 2011 and we play there almost twice a month during all

these years. This is definitely a special place. Besides the club, there are music

studios where we were working many times on our music with talented artists from

Wilde Renate family. We also do our monthly parties at a sex club Ficken3000. As

we usually say it is a unique combination of an arts salon and a sex labyrinth in one.

We already dedicated two of our songs to this amazing temple of love.”

“Indeed, there are more clubs in Berlin than anywhere else. You can play here every

weekend and still always have new audiences. Unlike the place where we come from,

in Berlin there are no laws that censor the artists. The city can be also tough in many

ways. But we can say that we feel home here. Another thing that is important for us is

that here we can meet and collaborate with people from very different places and

backgrounds. This communication is crucial for us. We evolve by talking, dancing,

making music and making love with very different and yet likeminded people.