There’s an ease and sensitivity to Margot that comes across the minute she enters a room—qualities that surely facilitate her seemingly effortless ability to elicit emotion through music. As half of the musical duo The Dolls alongside DJ Mia Moretti, and well as a solo artist—Margot was signed to Warner Brothers last year and is in the process of recording her first album—she is constantly releasing a spectrum of emotion through her sometimes haunting, other times effervescent electro-violin riffs.
To capture the feeling of Paco Rabanne’s Spring 2017 collection, Margot teamed up with her close friend and filmmaker Liza Voloshin to create a short film entitled This Is Margot. “She [Liza] has such an incredible eye and embodies the ultimate ideal of feminine energy, so she is able to capture anything that celebrates that in a very authentic way.” Together they conceptualized the shoot, which was set at a Lynchian-like motel in the Poconos. “We wanted to create a world that wasn’t just a fashion shoot, but was actually a universe. I feel like the strength of the Paco Rabanne clothes helped bring it all to life,” Margot explains. “I think Paco Rabanne—and now Julien Dossena—understands how to make a woman feel confident.”
To complement the bold clothes and fantasy-like setting, Margot created an original score for the short film. “Music can immediately set the tone for how you want something to feel, so Liza and I were careful to make sure we were communicating the right feeling. I grew up in such a classic world and am drawn to film scores and music without lyrics, because words can’t always explain what you need to feel.”
Margot first picked up the violin at age four, when her parents were looking for an outlet for their daughter’s high energy. “When you start so young, there’s an ability for it to feel natural, and it always did,” she explains. “Growing up in Florida, my whole life was violin, and I was wildly obsessed with it.” Eventually, she found herself living in New York between tours with bands and groups like the Tran-Siberian Orchestra.
One night, Margot’s manager introduced her to Mia Moretti during a Lower East Side gig where they were both performing. “We both lived in the East Village, and she invited me over to listen to records. She played me a bunch of disco, hip-hop, and soul funk—I just didn’t grow up listening to any of that,” says Margot of the eye-opening experience. “She taught me so much. We decided to see what happened if we put strings over disco and experimented from there.” Suddenly, the two were getting hired for gig after gig taking them all around the world—including opening for Katy Perry—and The Dolls were born. And while Margot is now focused on creating her first solo record, the duo remains an important outlet for her musically. “If Mia and I don’t have a show for a month, I crave that release,” she says.
Collaborating with girlfriends is paramount for Margot, who says she was destined to meet the women she now calls her soul sisters. The friend group—which includes Mia Moretti, Cleo Wade, Kate Greer, and Liza Voloshin—formed a female art collective called Chez Conversations. “I think that we all approach life with the same passion,” says Margot. “For a while we all lived close together, and inevitably we’d end up together most nights huddled around a bottle of wine and a notebook writing poetry. We started creating from a very organic place.” The group supports each other on both independent and collaborative projects—“Sometimes it’s as simple as just showing up for each other.”
For Liza, getting to collaborate with Margot was a dream. “She’s my muse. Margot has an army of personalities living inside her, each with their own tale. As women, we often only show one side of ourselves to the world, like a suit of armor, but her many layers are liberated, flowing together to create harmony and dissonance,” she gushes about her friend. “Her music often brings me to tears because it attaches itself to a deep root I’ve hidden away and forgotten. So my film is dedicated to these fairies of Margot’s chakras. Sometimes you can see them if you squint.” Watching Margot run along the riverbank at magic hour, further illuminated by Paco Rabanne’s light-catching mesh skirt and top, we know exactly what Liza means.