Accordion Duel


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Miha Debevec (diatonic button accordion) and Klemen Bojanovič (classical accordion):
ACCORDION DUEL

Miha Debevec is a multiple absolute winner of some of the most prestigious world competitions in playing the diatonic button accordion and the winner of many other important competitions organised in Slovenia or abroad, i.e. in the Italian Attimis and Savorgnano del Torre and Slovenian towns of Postojna, Ljubečna, Ratež, Senožeče, Medvode, Logatec etc. For quite some time, he has been concentrating on concert performances, working for a number of eminent institutions such as the Olympic Committee, Slovenian Tourist Board, Slovenian Government Communication Office etc. Debevec appeared on satellite television channels such as CNN and 3Sat. Before the last three CDs entitled Dež in sonce (Eng.: Rain and Sun) in 2016, Spopad harmonik (Eng.: Accordion Duel) in 2007 and Izrazi harmonik (Eng.: Musical Expressions with Accordions) in 2011, with the last two were recorded together with the original member of the accordion duo, Tomaž Rožanec, he released three solo projects, i.e. a tape called Prvak harmonikar – Miha Debevec (Eng.: Champion Accordionist) in 1994, and two CDs, of which one, entitled Mladi virtuozi – Miha Debevec (Eng.: Young virtuosos), was released in 1998, and the other, by the name of Diatonična harmonija (Diatonic Harmony), in 2005. Lately, the most important performances have included the Manhattan concert in New York as well as performances at the European Commission in Brussels, the International Tourism Trade Fair in Berlin and the Europe Day in Stockholm. His Libertango video spot topped the TV Slovenia Domestic Spot of the Week chart several times. In 2007, Debevec held guest performances in Miami, Florida, and also in Dallas, Texas, where he appeared as a special guest at the largest USA accordion player convention (for more information about Debevec please go to the Introduction/About Me menu).
In 2012, Klemen Bojanovič completed his studies of classical accordion at The Maribor Conservatory of Music and Ballet under the guidance of Professor Andrej Lorber. In the Slovenian music scene, he has been a prominent figure as an accordionist, composer, and educator for several years. He regularly conducts seminars and workshops organized by the Republic of Slovenia Public Fund for Cultural Activities, focusing on contemporary interpretation of folk instrumental and dance music. He serves as the artistic director of Rožanska muzika (ŽKUD Tine Rožanc), Krogovci (DKV Krog), and the Ped1ped project. Klemen is also an active member of the concert ensemble Kr’Etno, the duet Dvojina, and the accordion orchestra Disharmonična kohorta, formed for the performance of Laibach’s Alamut. Additionally, he is the composer of musical arrangements for dance-theatre performances such as Aleksandrinke, Apotropeja, Desetero zgodb ljubezni, Nikrman, Reka, Svetloba, and Ljubljanski zvon, which were staged between 2016 and 2023 at Cankarjev dom in Ljubljana, the Festival Hall in Bled, and the Slovene National Theatre Maribor. Notably, Klemen also composed the music for the theatre-dance performance Prebujenje, presented as part of the state celebration of Reformation Day in 2019. He has been recognized with multiple awards for his arrangements at the Marolt Competition and the Competition of Pairs in Folk Dances.
The two performers maintain their distinct musical expression by employing sensual interpretation and virtuoso-like handling of their instruments. They stand out by not limiting their opus to simple popular or traditional folk music, which is especially typical of musicians playing the diatonic button accordion, but rather fusing their music played on the two instruments with other, more demanding genres. They place special emphasis on quality musical arrangements involving unique ideas which they implement in their creative processes. Having combined the classical and diatonic button accordion, their musical expression has become virtually limitless. Their opus includes arrangements of different songs ranging from classical music to popular and traditional ethno pieces from different corners of the world, such as Slovenia, France, Russia, Serbia, Argentina, Spain and other countries. Miha Debevec and Klemen Bojanovič draw surprising and different possibilities of expression from the accordion, which is an important contribution to both originality and the Slovenian music culture in general. Together with the former due member Tomaž Rožanec, Debevec appeared in such different places as the Manhattan in New York, USA and the state of Jordan, and performed at some of the most prestigious events in Slovenia and the wider region. The duo also appeared at festivals such as Rock Otočec, Tango festival Idrija, Kunigunda Festival, Zmaj ‘ma mlade Festival, Jazzagorje Festival, Poletna noč (Summer Night Festival) and Noči v Stari Ljubljani (Nights in the Ljubljana Old Town), and in a number of Slovenian television shows including TLP, Piramida, As ti tud not padu?!, Spet doma, Ugani, kdo pride na večerjo, Na zdravje, Zadetek v petek, Zaigraj še enkrat, sam, Polnočni klub, Tranzistor, Enajsta šola, Jasno in glasno, Dobro jutro etc. Just after the Clash of the Accordions CD had been released, the duo appeared at the cover of the Pilot magazine, the most popular printed edition in Slovenia, and was listed at the Slo Tops 30 chart of best-selling CDs. Their interpretation of Brahms’ Hungarian Dance No. 5 was made into a video spot, which was frequently shown by all major TV channels in the country. At the end of 2008, they performed at the Cleveland Polka Extravaganza Festival Weekend, which is generally speaking the largest expat event, and in 2010 they appeared in South Africa at Slovenian promotion events held in the framework of the World Football Championship. For the same purpose, they were engaged in the Slovenian promotional activities at the Basketball World Championship in Istanbul, Turkey and Hong Kong, China. In 2011, the musicians released the Izrazi harmonik CD (Eng.: Musical Expressions with Accordions), and a sheet music collection for Spopad harmonik (Eng.: Clash of the Accordions) at the end of 2013. The most memorable appearances also include the Murat and Jose concert, which was filmed by MTV Adria, and gigs with many Slovenian musicians, including Gal and Severa Gjurin, Andrej Šifrer, Gašper Konec, Matevž Šalehar – Hamo, Sašo Avsenik, Tomaž Domicelj, Milko Lazar and Bojan Gorišek, Zaklonišče Prepeva, Omar Naber, Lojze Kranjčan and many others.