In 1996 I played for the Novurgia contemporary music season at the Palazzina Liberty in Milan; in the programme note the growing interest in the instrument was indicated as a renaissance of the accordion. Indeed, this is the case: the instrument, in the last thirty years, has been experiencing a real exploit.
The accordion is proposed again today as a standard bearer for the entertainment genre: we could therefore speak of rediscovery, thinking of the music of Astor Piazzolla, and of all the song entourage that derives from it. But it seems to me absolutely necessary to talk about the interest that the accordion arouses in cultured music; this is the real renaissance of the accordion. A renaissance that has something profoundly new in it: the potential of the instrument has finally found a dimension that allows him to be thoroughly investigated, and thus contribute to broadening the horizon of contemporary musical thought.
The last twenty years has in fact given our instrument memorable pieces, such as Sequenza XIII by Luciano Berio, Feria IV by Franco Donatoni, De profundis by Sofia Gubajdulina, Winter seeds by Klaus Huber, Episoden, Figuren by Mauricio Kagel, Jeu d’anches by Magnus Lindberg, Salvatore Sciarrino’s Vagabonde Blu, and so on.
I think it is right, from time to time, to update the situation, at least as regards to the production in the field of the cultured music.
This is what I am about to do in The Accordion at the Chigiana Academy in Siena.