Joseph Petric

Joseph Petric


Joseph Petric’s musicianship and vision in establishing the accordion as a solo instrument has captured the imagination of presenters everywhere. Critics describe his solo performances as, “magical, astonishing... ferocious virtuosity and understated mastery...a revelation”.


“Magical, … a revelation... exquisite...astonishing” are words used by audiences and the media to describe Joseph Petric's performances. His luminous command of an instrument at once familiar and exotic was described as 'legendary' in the Canadian Music Centre's citation and presentation of the 2005 Friend of Canadian Music Award. The first accordionist laureate of the BBC Radio 3 auditions, Petric continues to share his vision with international audiences through his successes in the CBC Radio Auditions, Societe Radio Canada's Carte Blanche series 2000, his Juno nomination (2003) for Best Classical Recording, Prix Opus (2006) nomination for Best Concert, and the Hunter Recording Prize nomination (2003) for Best Recording. His creativity has led to notable collaborations with Pauline Oliveros (1988-1994), Witold Lutowslawski (1986), Colin Tilney (1996-2001), David Mott in Erosonic, Normand Forget in the Petric-Forget Duo, and Alain Trudel and Guy Few in Bellows and Brass. As a champion of new music, Petric has been soloist with every major new music presenter in Canada including Societe de Musique Contemporaine de Quebec, Nouvel Ensemble Modern, New Music Concerts, and the Winnipeg New Music Festival.

Petric's solo activity includes appearances at the world's major venues including IRCAM, Seiji Ozawa Hall, Yjsbrekker Amsterdam, Southbank London, Franz Liszt Academy, and the Kennedy Centre, concerto performances and recordings with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, the BBC Concert Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra, Concertante di Chicago and the Vancouver CBC Orchestra, and appearances at the festivals of Siljan, Huddersfield, Belfast, Tanglewood, Agora, Vienna, Washington, Ottawa, and the Montreal Biennale among many others. With international management support he has been invited to undertake extended tours for international presenters such as the John Lewis Partnership (UK), Columbia Artists (USA), Jeunesses Musicales, Debut Atlantic and Musique Royale.

A passionate collaborator, Petric's commitment to new creation and the establishment of the accordion as a solo instrument is well reflected in his 194 commissions to date - a repertoire which includes 10 concertos and 26 electroacoustic and multi-media works. His now famous commission The Orbiting Garden for accordion with interactive electroacoustics carries such interpretive and technical demands that after 15 years and more than 65 international performances it still awaits a public performance by one other than the dedicatee. Petric's fascination early on by the process and role of adaptation in the interpretive art was a natural outcome of his inclusive approaches to the accordion as an artistic medium. The latter activity is reflected in an ongoing bibliography of more than 1000 traditional works for accordion awaiting publication. Together, these contributions have invited a re-appraisal of the concert accordion.

Petric continues to explore the accordion's strong postmodern artistic potential for audiences in a discography which now numbers 27 titles. These recordings include carefully developed solo and chamber works for new combinations which complement the canon with electroacoustic works, concertos, and the cultivation of a unique series of adaptations featuring complete discs of the keyboard works by Soler, Rameau's Pieces de Clavecin , Bach's solo French and English suites, CPE Bach's Wurttemberg Sonatas, and JS Bach's Trio Sonatas. Planned releases in this series will include works by Mozart, Haydn, Molique, and Regondi.

The late Mogens Ellegaard valued Petric's contributions with invitations to the Royal Danish Conservatory, Rejkjavik's Museum of Man, Oslo's Royal Conservatory, Finland's Sibelius Academy and Jyvaskylla Conservatory. Petric has also been a guest at London's Royal Academy, and an independent juror at the University of Toronto master's degree recitals. His article on how to compose for the accordion has now been disseminated to more than three generations of composers worldwide, and the Montreal based publication CIRCUIT recently devoted an extended article to his work.

Future activities include the European premiere of the Bach Trio Sonatas, return engagements in Washington, New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and London 2007, the Ottawa Chamber Music Festival; new concerto commissions and premieres with leading Canadian orchestras, CD recordings of the Gougeon concerto En Accordeon (ATMA), works by Andrew MacDonald with the Penderecki String Quartet (Centrediscs ), and the music of Bernhard Molique (Conaccord). New directions include multi-media presentations with choreographer Heidi Strauss, commissions by composers Keith Hamel and Bob Pritchard, and the world premiere of a complete program devoted to adaptations of Mozart sonatas 2007 as well as collaborations with Cologne based tenor Kristoph Pregardien.

The only accordionist active today devoted solely to concertizing, Petric gives up to 75 concerts a


Berio - The Sequenzas
Euphonia •Solo works by women composers•
•Rameau• •Dialogues and Illuminations•
Norma Beecroft 2003
Electricities 2003
Erosonic - Mystery Theatre 2002
The Orbiting Garden 2002
Bach - Suites, Sonata, Airs and Dances 2001
Redemption - Peter Paul Koprowski Concerti
Bellows & Brass ... and Boyd
Padre Anotonio Soler - Nine Sonatas
Tango Nuevo
Joseph Petric Accordion
Catbird Seat
Shadow Box
The Eyes of Bidesuk