Heili Siekkinen"The artist has been working with music all his/hers life, investing time, money and relationships. Is it worth the sacrifice?"

Heli gratuaded in 2004 as a classical musician from the Conservatoire of Jyväskylä Vocational Institute. Interest towards music in its all forms has driven Heli in many projects. She can be seen as a soloist or with variable ensembles in concert halls, theaters, clubs and restaurants with versatile repertoires.Heli participated her first competition when she was only six years old and won her first Finnish championship as a classical accordion soloist. Heli continued competing and gained in total five Finnish championships. She also participated competitions in Germany, Italy and Denmark, and came home with two third and one second places.

- Heli. You are a professional accordion soloist known in Finland and overseas. In our country this profession is more typical for male a performer, that’s why being a woman-accordionist looks somewhat unusual. Why did you decide chose this profession?

-I started as an accordionist at the age of three and for some reason I fell in love with the instrument and classical music. I have been a very physical player even as a child and I think the instrument was just
right > for my Slavic personality. My teacher, Vladimir Dolgopolov also introduced me pieces from Russian composers in an early stage and those were also physically demanding for a small girl, but I took that as a challenge
which I wanted overcome and did.

-Also you can play Bandoneón. What can you say about this instrument?

  - In 2001 I started performing Piazzolla's music with my ensemble Quinteto Fuego, and after a while I became interested of the bandoneón The instrument was (and still is) a challenge, because of the very different technique than accordion, but the sound is so incredible that I've wanted to overcome the difficulties and be able to make music with both of these instruments. I had the opportunity to perform Piazzolla's Aconcagua for bandoneón and orchestra. That is an incredible piece and it inspired me to practice the bandoneón even further. Being an accordionist and bandoneónist, is not the easiest road as a musician. Both of these instruments still struggle to be noticed in classical music. Almost every performance I've had is only because of my determination and my sincere believe in the music I perform. And what helps me to continue pushing classical accordion and bandoneón forward, is the reaction I get from the audience, they are simply blown away by to
music.
- Speaking about the audience, people usually think that everything that happens on stage is a miracle. Often they take it for granted. However, they have no idea how much work in invested by musicians. What are the difficulties faced by you on and backstage?

-The difficulty in being a musician is that you also need to market yourself in order to get opportunities. At least for me it has been a difficulty, because all I'd want and have time to focus on, is to get my playing better and I think that should be the artists only focus. Unfortunately it's impossible in today’s world; if you're not lucky enough to find a person (manager) who knows exactly how it is you want to appear in your profession. I'm not sure if this is a unisex problem, but at least I have been tried to push out as something I'm not.

 And to talk about music, that is somehow unbelievable that some people truly think that the music just comes out without any work. Of course that is how it should appear, effortless, but people should realize that the artist has been working with music all his/hers life, investing time, money and relationships. Is it worth the sacrifice? I'm not sure,
but I don't know any other way to live.

- What are your plans for future? Are you planning to give any concert soon? 

My future performing takes place in Finland for now. I'm preparing new program for recitals and also trying to find new symphonic works for both bandoneón and accordion. So for now I'm improving my performance and hopefully next year You'll be able to hear my new program! I have been lucky to find a concert management that wishes to forward my international career. That includes recitals and performings with orchestras.

Dina Mukhamedzyanova

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