Kokkola Winter Accordion XXIII is always open to the new, and year has really put us to the test – with positive results. Having met the complicated challenge of presenting a festival in the middle of a pandemic, we can honestly say that something new and wonderful has been born.
This year, we encouraged musicians to send their performances via video. The only rule was that winter and accordion must be represented in the recording. We left everything else up to the musician.

”The finished product consists of 13 videos. The collection is very interesting. There are solo performances, orchestras and compositions in different styles. Winter and accordion have been combined in many different ways – some played winter-themed tunes, while others recorded their performace with a wintry landscape as a backdrop  – and some were even brave enough to perform outside,” says Raimo Vertainen, festival artistic director.
In accordion circles, the word spread quickly. This is probably why the lineup even features a contribution from Germany.
”Someone contacted me from Dresden wondering if they could take part in the festival. The answer was, of course! So we received a recording of a performance by a quartet. The other videos are from Kokkola, Lahti, Helsinki, Haapajärvi and Hämeenlinna,” he says.
Mr. Virtainen would especially like to thank the media center Lime, who helped with the important task of compiling the recordings into a whole.
”We have also featured a short presentation before every performance. We’ve included English subtitles so that our international audiences can enjoy the performances,” adds Mr. Vertainen.


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