ACCOsax Freeminded (Lithuania):
Raimondas Sviackevičius - acc
This free jazz project unites three exceptionally creative music personalities. In their music they combine technical mastery, expression and subtlety, contemporary thinking and echoes from the past.
In 2008, JazzBridge festival in Sweden ranked ACCOsax Freeminded as one of the most striking and innovative collectives. This year Trio received an enthusiastic reception in the Festival of European Capitals in Gdansk, Poland.
Raimondas Sviackevičius is among Lithuania’s most capable accordionists. He contributed a great deal to bringing accordion to the most important music stages and festivals, and to expanding its repertoire.
Raimondas studied accordion at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre (LAMT), Lodz (Poland) and Sibelius (Finland) music academies as well as the Royal Conservatory of The Hague (the Netherlands), took part in master classes led by renowned performers.
The musician took prizes in four Lithuanian Accordion Competitions (1988, 1990, 1992 and 1994). He captured prizes in international accordion competition Citta di Castelfidardo (1996 and 1998) and in 1999 took second prize in Pianello Val Tidone competition (both in Italy). The same year he won first prize and received a special prize in Premio Internazionale per fisharmonica Stefano Bizzari where the following year he became the absolute winner and was awarded Golden Lyre.
Sviackevičius performs as a soloist and with various contemporary music performers as well as multimedia projects, collaborates with representatives of electronic and experimental music, performs classical music, does not shun from good-quality popular music and avant-garde jazz. As a soloist he has appeared with Lithuanian symphony and chamber orchestras. Sviackevičius is a member of contemporary music ensemble Gaida. He has inspired many a Lithuanian composer to write for accordion.
Since 2000, Sviackevičius has taught at the LAMT. He is spiritus movens of many accordion related events, and since 2008, has been managing Vilnius International Accordion Festival.
Jan Maksimovič, one of the most exciting Lithuanian saxophonists, is also a composer and pedagogue. His jazz projects have claimed hearts of a number of jazz aficionados. He also appears in unconventional formations, performs academic and contemporary music. He has appeared in jazz projects since 1996.
In 2000, Maksimovič garnered Grand Prix at the Lithuania’s Saxophone Competition in Klaipėda, third prize at the International Saxophone Competition in Latvia, and first prize at the International Young Jazz Performers Competition in Klaipėda.
Since 1999, Maksimovič has participated in Vilnius Jazz projects, where in 2002 he made his debut as a leader and composer.
From then on, the saxophonist has mainly been working with his Trio, Quartet and group Riot. In addition, he has collaborated with Petras Vyšniauskas, Vytautas Labutis, Vladimir Chekasin, Dainius Pulauskas, Olegas Molokojedovas, Valerijus Ramoška and Arūnas Šlaustas among other Lithuanian jazz celebrities.
Arkady Gotesman, Pulauskas’ long-standing stage partner, is one of the most versatile Lithuanian drummers. In addition to playing jazz, the percussionist performs contemporary academic music, writes scenarios for performances and installations, composes, records and performs music for theatre productions, performs as a silent film taper, collaborates with dancers.
Gotesman’s percussion can be heard in Oskaras Koršunovas’ theatre productions, and Anatolijus Šenderovas’ ballet Desdemona, as well as choreographic production To Disobey by choreographer Loreta Juodkaitė.
Inspired by J. Brodsky’s poetry Gotesman recorded solo album J. Brodsky in memoriam; his music is also featured on a CD of Rolandas Rastauskas’ poems.
Gotesman made his jazz debut in the 80s. He has collaborated with exponents of various trends including Roland Dahinden, Vladimir Volkov, Vyacheslav Gaivoronsky, Arkady Shikloper, Julian Joseph, John Zorn, David Geringas, Jack Siron, Frank London, Anthony Coleman and Charles Gayle.
For many years the percussionist has been working with Petras Vyšniauskas, Vyacheslav Ganelin and Liudas Mockūnas. In addition, he should be credited for original projects with vocalist Andrė Pabarčiūtė. He is a founder and a member of Vilnius Klezmer Orchestra, and organiser of Klezmer Music Festival.