Martynas Levickis, the renowned Lithuanian accordionist, is embarking on an exciting new phase in his career this November. He has received an invitation from the prestigious London Royal Academy of Music to become a visiting professor.
Hailed by the UK’s Independent newspaper as “amazingly talented… the man who is single-handedly reinventing the accordion”, Martynas Levickis is one of the world’s leading exponents of the instrument. Acclaimed for his virtuosity and versatility in the classical and contemporary repertoire, Martynas is the recipient of more than 30 international awards. Both solo and in collaboration with internationally renowned instrumentalists and orchestras, Martynas continues to captivate audiences worldwide with his musicality, charisma and dynamic performances. The virtuoso accordionist needs no introduction to the Lithuanian audience. Furthermore, he is, undeniably, a mega star of his homeland's musical scene.
“I'm delighted to announce that I've been appointed as the Visiting Professor at the Royal Academy of Music, my Alma Mater in London! It feels like coming home after a long long time and it is also an incredible honour to join this esteemed institution and a renowned accordion department established and led by my Professor Owen Murray. I can't wait to share my passion for music with the talented students and hopefully not only nourish the big tradition but also bring something new”, announced Martynas on his Facebook page.
Martynas Levickis completed his studies at the Royal Academy of Music in London. In 2016, he was already recognized as an honorary associate of the academy, a title awarded to former students who have successfully pursued careers in the world of music and achieved significant milestones in their professional fields.
As reported by LRT.lt, Professor Owen Murray, who had previously taught Martynas, initially approached him informally to inquire whether he would accept such a position.
"Of course, I agreed. Afterwards, I received an official invitation from the Royal Academy of Music in London to become a visiting professor. My reaction was like that of a child. Such emotions rarely touch me. It was genuinely an emotional moment. Teaching has always attracted me, and I hoped that I might receive such an invitation someday. It's incredible that it happened now. This probably happened because of the recent years of my career, which have been full of activity and achievements. It's very symbolic to receive an invitation at this moment," quoted by LRT.lt.
During this productive year, he participated in Germany's classical music festival "Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern," where he held a resident status. On October 8th, at the prestigious "Opus Klassik" awards ceremony, he will be honoured as the instrumentalist of the year, as reported by LRT.lt.
According to Martynas, these new responsibilities will not require any changes in his place of residence, currently in Berlin, or his concert schedule.
Levickis‘ career began in the dense woods of Lithuania, where he was already imitating the birds and the sound of the trees with his accordion at the age of three. When he was eight, he attended the S. Sondeckis School of the Arts in his hometown of Šiauliai before later going on to study under Owen Murray at the Royal Academy of Music in London.
The steep trajectory of Levickis‘ career as the ambassador of the accordion sped up further when he won the casting show ‘Lithuania’s Got Talent’ in 2010, becoming a superstar in his own country and thus finally proving that he and his instrument deserved international attention. This was followed by a debut album with Decca Classics – Levickis was the first accordionist to sign with the label – and this shot immediately to number one in the British classical music charts. He also received more than 30 international awards for his work, including first place in the Coupe Mondiale World Accordion Championships.
Today Martynas Levickis is one of the most sought-after accordion soloists in the world. His many appearances have included performances with the HR-Sinfonieorchester, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and the National Philharmonic Orchestra Vilnius. Guest performance venues have included the Royal Albert Hall, the Wigmore Hall, the Auditorio Nacional in Mexico and the Seoul Arts Centre and festivals such as Bath, the Dresden Music Festival, the Thuringia Bach Festival, Bremen Music Festival, the Edinburgh Jazz Festival, Gaida, the International Chamber Music Festival Utrecht, the MDR Musiksommer, Heidelberger Frühling and the Schleswig-Holstein Music Festival. Past and future musical partners include Iveta Apkalna, Benjamin Appl, Andrés Orozco-Estrada, Anu Tali, Kian Soltani, Harriet Krijgh and Avi Avital. In 2020 Levickis was made the ‘Prize-winner in Residence’ at Festspiele Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – an honour he will have for a second time in 2023.