It is my sincere belief that music is about composing and performing, teaching and learning. It is certainly much less about writing, talking and reading. Every sound, every touch of a string appears with titanic personalities, glorious names and immeasurable achievements. That leaves a little hope to be successful in writing your own biography, even for a musician, who dedicated entire life to the mystery called Music... Nevertheless, I will be happy at least trying.
So I, Oleg Volkov, paid my dues in the Academic Junior Music College ("Merzlyakovka"), the Gnessin Russian Academy of Music and in the Moscow Tchaikovsky Conservatory. Needless to say that I first met my favorite instrument, cello, being five years old, and we still carry on together.
These unforgettable, wonderful years of constant learning and discovering have been warmed and enlightened by my dearest teachers: Leonid Marderovsky, Nikolai Polupan, Sergey Shirinsky, Galina Kozolupova, Lev Evgrafov, Anatolii Egorov and Mstislav Rostropovich.
It is very common for all artists, as we learn something we rush to perform; forcing ourselves to perfection in playing in many groups with different like-minded musicians. This process catches me up in very lucky way as I was performing with Vladimir Tebenikhin (organ), Vladimir Krainev (piano), Dzhamil Mamedov (cello), Yuli Turovsky (cello), Tamara Sinyavskaya (vocal), Natalia Gutman (cello), Natalia Tsekhanovsky (harp) and Mikhail Voskresenskiy (piano).
Then I continued my professional career working in symphony and chamber orchestras of Moscow, Athens, Mexico, and Toronto. I remember all the conductors. What are the Musicians!!!! What are the names!!!! Evgeny Svetlanov, Kirill Kondrashin, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Veronica Dudarova, Yuri Simonov, Efrem Kurtz, Pavel Kogan and Leonard Bernstein.
The musical environment in Canada is different in some extend. There are many orchestras involving both professional and amateur musicians with great desire and heart to play the music. Their sincere performance deeply touches listeners giving them the feeling of harmony. I am fortunate enough to perform as a Concertmaster in the Cathedral Bluffs Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) with an exceptionally talented conductor Norman Reintamm, as well as in the Oshawa Durham Symphony Orchestra (ODSO), whose music director, Marco Parisotto, is one of Canada's most acclaimed and visible conductors on the world stage today.
Music is all about human soul. At any memorable moments, it is right there, because we need it, feel it, hear it, and even dream it through. The musicians are just those who make this connection happen. Great challenge, isn't it?
I am lucky to lead various of chamber ensembles and orchestras, groups of musicians, which come to play together for some special occasions - weddings, banquettes, etc. It is always exiting to do musical arrangements for such things. Like I just said, we make the mystery happen.
"Arco" is my favorite group. I have started it in 1993 in Athens, Greece. The recognition and popularity came to us right away. We were accepted to the classical music broadcast of the Athens radio and became its "official voice". We traveled in Greece and Europe and even played on the official state receptions for the Presidents Vladimir Putin (Russia), Bill Clinton (USA), Nursultan Nazarbaev (Kazakhstan) and Eduard Shevardnadze (Georgia). "Arco" accompanied the President of Greece Constantine Stephanopoulos in his official visits to Georgia, Israel, and Armenia. I was happy to write numerous musical arrangements of both classical and contemporary composers.
"Arco" inspired others with soft and bright combination of performance in various styles: "Baroque", Vienna classics by Mozart and Haydn, ragtimes, waltzes, foxtrots, tangos and rock-n-rolls, as well as Russian, Hebrew, and Greek folk music. I know... it sounds like an eclectic think. I wouldn't disagree. But when it comes to people's happiness, it does not really matter which melody flies first whether it is "The Magic Flute" of Mozart or Beatles' "Michelle". We just make it happen.
We developed ability to present ourselves in different shapes: String Quartet (two violins, viola and cello), String Trio (violin, viola and cello) and Piano Trio (piano, violin and cello). There is no tangible limit, indeed. Remember, we just make it happen.
Yes, music is about to create, perform, learn and teach. If you like what I have done and what I have to share with you, call me today.
Copyright © Oleg Volkov & The Arco Ensemble — All Rights Reserved