|A. I feel that there is great musical heritage, to which I hope I will contribute.
I have several things that have provided inspiration. The music of Bach is the deepest and richest that you can find in the culture of music. When I was a student, I wanted to play all the organ music. I realized I could not do everything, however I liked also the music of Messian and Liszt.
My teacher at the Gnessin Institute, Prof. Kolobkov provided great inspiration for me also, and it was during my days at the Gnessin Institute, that I met and became friendly with Zolotariew.
My friendship with Zolotariew changed my direction. I had won the Klingenthal competition in 1969. However I was not happy with the level of original music, so I wanted to play transcriptions of the organ masterworks. It was around this time that I met Zolotariew, with whom I became immediate friends. I heard his Partita and I was the second to play it. I identified immediately with Zolotariew’s music. Zolotariew then attended one of my concerts and was equally impressed with my playing. Zolotariew immediately wrote his second and third sonatas and his Rhapsody Espagnole.
Zolotariew told me, that he knew it was the right direction to play original music, because every instrument must have its identity. He told me that I must dream that the likes of Gubaidulina etc… write for the accordion. At the time, Gubaidulina was quite famous, but she and other composers were not subsidized by the Government, because they were writing music that was considered different and experimental.
In 1972 I played for the famous composer Mr. Schnittke, at his home, while another famous composer Mr. Denisov came to the Gnessin Institute especially to listen to me. During this time, Zolotariew wanted to be in the composers union group in Russia. This was not easy however, Gubaidulina heard Zolotariew’s Sonata 3 and recommended him, which in turn enabled him to become a part of this famed organization. This sparked the beginning of the friendship between Gubaidulina and I.
On the 13th May 1975, Zolotariew committed suicide. (I was in Klingenthal at the time, and came back the day after, to receive a telegram with the news. The next day the funeral service was held.)
This tragedy inspired Gubaidulina to write something for the bayan, so she had many discussions with me, where I explained to her about the bayan. The result of this was Gubaidulina’s ‘De Profundis.’