Primary Instrument: Accordion
Victor Prieto is a native of Galicia, Spain born in the town of Orense in 1975. At the age of nine Victor was encouraged by his mother to study the accordion-an instrument deeply ingrained in Galician folklore. While studying classical accordion at the Orense Conservatory Victor understood the immense musical potential of his instrument and branched out from the classical education by concurrently taking harmony, arrangement and improvisation classes at Estudio Escola de Musica (Santiago de Compostela, Spain). In 1998 Victor received a scholarship from Berklee College of Music where he majored in performance under the direction of Joanne Brackeen. Berklee, where Victor was the only one to date to specialize in accordion, did not offer any classes focusing on accordion. Uninhibited by these circumstances Victor created his own study program applying the expertise offered by educators at Berklee to the accordion.
Today Victor Prieto is revolutionizing the way that the accordion is played by creating new sounds and techniques for this instrument. His music embraces Jazz, Tango, Classical and Celtic Roots enriched with new rhythms and colors. He is the creator of a new technique for the accordion called “chord approach on both hands”, which creates rich and elaborate harmonies.
In 2002 Victor moved to New York where he quickly established himself as one of the most prolific and versatile accordionists on the music and Jazz scenes. As a leader Victor has performed at many prestigious venues and events such as Berklee Performance Center, Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola at Jazz at Lincoln Center, Blue Note NY, New Jersey Performance Art Center, Three Rivers Musical Festival, Williamsburg Jazz Festival, Mary D’Angelo Performing Arts Center.
Victor has performed and recorded with Yo-Yo Ma (Songs of Joe and Peace, Sony BMG Masterworks. “2010 Grammy Winning Album”), Jeff Ballard, Chris Cheek, Paquito D’Rivera, Matt Wilson, Donny McCaslin, Lionel Louke among others and is involved in projects such as Pablo Aslan’s Avantango, Emilio Solla’s NY Jazz Tango Project, Tessa Souter and Beat Kaestli.
He teaches Master Classes in Spain, Italy, Portugal, USA and has headed the jazz accordion studies at the Brooklyn Conservatory (2003 �” 2004). He is a recipient of numerous awards and prizes for excellence in accordion performance and composition, among them are: the Creative Performer award from the Spanish Association of Artists and Performers, and the first prize at CMZK’s Concourse of Composition (Argentina).
Victor now lives in New York City dividing his time between performing, teaching and recording. He has recently introduced his third recording, “Chris Cheek and V. Prieto. Rollo-Coaster.”, Cheekus Music.
New York, 2009.
Home: New York, NY
Awards:CMK's Concorse of Composition (Argentina) FIRST PRIZE 2001 AIE (Spanish Asociation of Artists and Performers, Spain) Award given for first time to an accordionist. 2001 International Jazz Award "Citta di Castelfidardo, Italy" FIRST PRICE 1998 Berklee College of Music Scholarship Award given for first time to an accordionist 1994 International Jazz Award "Cita di Castelfidardo, Italy" THIRD PRICE 1992 Regional competition, Castilla La Mancha (Spain) FIRST PRICE
New York, NY
Willing to teach:
Advanced students only.