Mihaela Tenev, known professionally as Mishel Dean is born in Burgas and that’s where her career as an artist began.
At the age of 6 she started playing the piano, and at the age of 9 -the double bass. Her first performances as a pop and jazz singer came when she was just 14 years old, singing for the “Orpheus” vocal and instrumental group.
She regularly performed with the group up until her graduation from the musical high school in Burgas in 1990.
During that same year, she was admitted into State Musical Academy „Prof. Vancho Vladigerov“ in the city of Sofia. She majored with a master’s degree in double bass (specialization led by by Prof. Nikolai Nikolov), as well as pop and jazz singing (specialization led by Associate Prof. Boris Stamenov). She also attended a master’s class conducted by Prof. Nikolai Nikolov.
In her period as a student, she won many first-place awards with some of the more significant being: first place at the „Svetoslav Obretenov“ international competition (Provadia, 1988), the extraordinary prize of the “Stefan Sugarev” National Artists’ Meeting (Kyustendil, 1989), first place in the category “Best young lead solo singer” (Burgas, 1990), first place at the “National student competition for best pop performer” (Sofia, 1990), first place at the “Michelle Mercurio” national competition, where she was accompanied by the Big Band of the Bulgarian National Radio (BNR), orchestrated by conductor Villy Kazasyan. Lastly, one of her singles was among the top 6 best original songs at the „Golden Orpheus“ festival in Sofia, 1995.
The solo career of Mishel began with the release of her debut album „The season for love“ („Sezonut za lyubov“) in 1997, which was followed by a few successful singles, released in compilations as follows:
„I’m the wind“ („Vyatur sum“) – 1999, „Ciao-ciao“ – 2000, „Up until yesterday“ („Do vchera“) – 2004, „I’m yours“ („Tvoya sum“) – 2005.
Apart from performing in a number of solo, collective and charitable concerts, promotions, theatrical and fashion festivals, Mishel was also the guest of the most popular radio and television music shows such as: „Pulsating notes“ hosted by Toma Sprostranov, „Party east from heaven“ hosted by Niki Kunchev, „How are we going to reach them...“ hosted by Todor Kolev, „Kanaleto“ hosted by Slavi Trifonov and Kamen Vodenicharov, “Counterpoints“ hosted by Daniela Kuzmanova, „Top Video“ hosted by Gergana Kovacheva, „How are you“ hosted by Desi Grozdanova, „Music by notes“ hosted by Harry Anichkin and many others.
The music videos of „Moon dance“ („Lunen tanc“) and „The dream of the angels“ („Sunyat na angelite“), directed by Joro Tonchev, top the Bulgarian TV music charts, with the „The dream of the angels“ winning „Best song“ for 1998 from „Top Video“, Bulgarian National Television. Later on, the video of the song was voluntarily provided to the “Red Cross” and served as advertising material, helping the organization to raise funds for orphans.
The first ever animated music video in Bulgaria called “Good evening, night!” was also produced by Mishel in 1998 and was directed by Sotir Gelev. It premiered on MTV and the Bulgarian music channels.
Between 2000 and 2005 the following highly successful singles debuted: “Ciao-ciao” by studio “Blend”, “Up until yesterday” and “I’m yours” – shot at studio TL Media and directed by Lachezar Petrov.
Apart from being an accomplished singer, Mishel’s had involvement in other areas of the music industry. During the period of 1997-98 she was the press attaché for “Bulgarian Music Company”. 1998-99 she hosted the music show “Mania”, which aired on the channels of “7 days” and “Eurocom”. In the year 2000, she opened “Art Club Mishel” in Sozopol, which has since hosted jazz performers from Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Netherlands, Germany, Norway, Argentina, USA and others on its stage. The popular journalist Iva Doychinova says: “Art Club Mishel is an institution when it comes to jazz music”.
In 2005, Mishel moved to Berlin where her professional career continued. She established the band “Mishel & The Company”, with whom she performed at many different jazz festivals, concerts and in the most prestigious jazz clubs in Berlin. Her biggest success came in 2013, when she released a new jazz album with the support of German producer Werner Bonfig (“Compost Tonstudio”).
The official album release took place on 04.06.2013 and was captured by most local German media outlets. After this successful endeavour, Mishel was also invited to be the jury for a few international vocal competitions.
Mishel’s pedagogical activity began back in 1995 in Sofia. Some of her students such as Lyudmil Ilarionov (from UpDown) and Todor Georgiev (from Boys’ world) have successful careers as vocal performers. Between 2005 and 2015 she taught at a private music school in Berlin and also gave private lessons in pop and jazz singing, piano and musical theory.
In 2015, Mishel returned to her home town Burgas, Bulgaria. She also came “home” to the high school she’s graduated from – NUMSI “prof. Pancho Vladigerov”.
Mishel was appointed teacher in pop and jazz singing and says that: “Teaching at a place, where every single tile, every wall and every door remind you of a story is an indescribable type of happiness”.