“Only the one who is burning himself, is able to start a fire in someone else” Augustinus
I was born in Moscow into an average family. None of my relatives was musician but they all loved music. This is why my parents decide to enroll me in the music school at the age of nine. In fact, my parents were very committed to fostering my activities. I had the opportunity to try different things though never two things at the same time. There was a time for athletics, one for swimming…However it became obvious that I wasn’t good at sports. Nearby there was a house of the arts, which offered music classes for children. This is where I got to know the guitar first as a young boy. And today we look back at thirty common happy years.
So far I have met many people; among them have been good and very good players. They soon became my teachers. I am convinced that everyone can be your teacher at certain moment. Tough you will never forget your first teacher, just like your first love. Spending years as an eager student, I went successfully through all schools, colleges and places of apprenticeship. As far as my professors are concerned, I have always been very lucky since I was allowed to develop my preferences to the full.
I started studying in Moscow with Balalaika and Dombra Volk. This proved to be very fortunate for me as I listened to much of the Russian folk music and was influenced by it. The second studies took place in Germany – as a sort of precision work.
During my studies in Russia a balalaika luther gave me an old seven-string guitar as a present. It had just stood in a corner for several years. However, after my studies there was a special moment. While pondering about how to go on in my world of music, my eye fell on the seven-strings guitar and I knew what to do.
The seven-string Russian guitar
The seven-string Russian guitar’s heyday in Russia was early 19th century. The musician Andrei Sichra (1773-1850) brought the instrument from Poland and introduced it to his native country. As Sichra was a harpist, he chose the following pitch for the instrument, Re Sol Si re sol si re. Such is a comfortable, open pitch for arpeggio.
The seven-string guitar was welcome enthusiastically in Russia. Only shortly after, a number of great composers and guitar virtuosos such as Wysotsky, Alferiev, Zimmerman and Sarenko took the instrument to a high artistic level.
In the 20th century, the seven-string guitar disappeared from the field of classical music. However it kept on being played in the tradition of gypsy music. Among other, the guitar soloist Sergei Orechov gave a virtuoso performance.
Waltz Little Snowflake (M. Pavlov-Azancheev). I have always enjoyed playing this classic piece of music as part of the repertory for the seven-strings guitar. Published on the album Flick Flack, Film & Edit (Lennart Miketta) recorded by Kerani Music.
Variations on the folk theme “quiero ser tu sombra” with Michiel Wiesenekker as my duo partner. Translated into English, the title runs I want to be your shadow. Isn’t that romantic? Published on the album Flick Flack, Film & Edit (Lennart Miketta), recorded by Kerani Music.
Flicck Flack (by A. Vossen), played in trio together with Marijke and Michiel Wiesenekker. It was a challenge for 19 strings though we enjoyed the virtuoso piece of music by the Aachen composer Albert Vossen. Published on the album Flick Flack, Film & Edit (Lennart Miketta), recorded by Kerani Music.
Please view more video’s on my YouTube Channel!
Gitara Semistrunnaya (2004)
1. Das Herbstlaub – N.Titov (Bearb. W. Yurev)
2. I. Sokolov – Moskauer Polka (Bearb. S. Orechov)
3. Mar Djandja – Zigeunerweise
4. Zigeuner Polka – I. Sokolov (Checrnorechenskaja Datscha)
5. Walz – A. Düran
6. Csardas – V. Monti
7. Die Zigeuner ziehen – Zigeunerweise
8. Die helle Nacht – B. Bulachov
9. Die Trauerweide – B. Bulachov
Recording: Arno Op den Camp, Kerani Music, Stein NL