Martynas Levickis

Accordion virtuoso

Photo creadit: Tomas Adomavičius

At only 25, Martynas Levickis has already accomplished more than most musicians could hope to in a lifetime. After the television show Lithuania’s Got Talent propelled him into the spotlight, Levickis hit the top of the classical charts with his beloved…accordion. By using this underappreciated instrument in unexpected ways, Martynas is proving to be one of the great young innovators of Lithuanian pop culture.

Being born in independent Lithuania means being able to create contemporary attitudes and new horizons for my country and for the younger generation.

From an early age, I was taken by the world of sounds and fell in love with music.

The best way to connect with an audience is by sharing your soul and energy without hesitation.

Pursuing my dream gave me a lot of confidence and opened the doors to the world.

What gets me going is constantly being anxious and keen to take action.

Studying at the Royal Academy of Music taught me how to hear and listen, which is essential in all music-making. It taught me to pay attention to everything that surrounds me.

I never thought that the world would become this small for me. One day I am in Hong Kong, the next I’m in London or Chicago. Actually, Chicago has become almost like my third home.

Before every performance, I breathe.

Right after a concert I love to take a shower, but more often I go to a bar instead.

People do not know that the accordion is made of 10,000 different wooden, metal and plastic parts.

Traveling has become essential for me.

I will never forget the moment when I first played onstage. I truly enjoyed it.

My inspiration is love.

Most of my friends don’t get to see me anymore because I have become extremely busy.

Knowledge brings you more questions than answers.

Sometimes I wish I could get in my car and travel (with no destination) around the country to enjoy all the landscapes. I am a city boy, but I love nature.

I am determined to always finish what I have started.

When I am down, I always read, write and talk. It helps.

Success has nothing to do with being talented. It’s mostly about motivation and work.

Confidence should never be fully relied upon.

If I could, I would live in the forest.

Being a musician is my job, which I love.

My first disc was released in Lithuania in 2012. It was called iAccordion and included pop song arrangements played only on accordion. Decca Classics released my other album, Martynas, in 2013.

For me, the most important thing is to be honest with myself.

Contemporary music is a complex term that is troublesome to define. Perhaps that’s why I love it so much.

The most memorable moment from my childhood is wandering around our summer home while playing the accordion and singing Lithuanian folk songs.

I feel happiest when I see that things I do have an effect on people’s thoughts and feelings.

Winning the Coupe Mondiale World Accordion Championship was an important professional achievement that opened up some great opportunities.

I cannot imagine the modern world without the Internet.

I’ve never regretted choosing to play accordion instead of piano.

Living in London has taught me a lot in theory and in practice. It’s been a school of life; it still is.

Taking responsibility might be dangerous, but being responsible for someone is one of the most fantastic feelings human beings can experience.

What I value most is personal freedom, honesty and loyalty.

At one point I thought I would not succeed as a professional musician. That was back when I first came to study in London and realized how tiny I was in this vast city.  I lost many a hope and dream, but the experience spurred me to work harder.

What most helped me get to where I am now was my determination.

My first teacher taught me all about the accordion and its music. She also ingrained in me the value of hard work.

My dream collaboration is to play a concert with violinist Gidon Kremer.

Every time I come back to Lithuania, I always feel at home.

The greatest thing about being a musician is being able to do what you desire and get paid for it.

When I can, I always reply to all the emails that have been set aside and forgotten because of the enormous intensity of my schedule.

Being Lithuanian is not always easy, but it doesn’t matter that much which passport one has a hold of. The human spirit is what truly matters.

People always make mistakes. It’s good if we can admit it.

It takes a long time to understand what you actually want in life. Then it takes even longer to start moving towards the finish line. What’s great is the actual process you go through trying to achieve a goal. When the achievement is in your hand, you can turn around and ask, “What’s next?”

True happiness is making others happy.

I do not feel that global warming is affecting the UK. It’s too damn cold here!

The hardest thing about being an accordionist is the attitude and prejudgment people have, but I try to use this to my benefit.

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