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Matti Rantanen brings accordion to the church

SibaRecords releases Matti Rantanen's accordion album Missa Brevis 13th of September 2012. Here's a sneak peek of what's coming.

In the musical climate of 19th-century Finland, members of the educated and church circles condemned little 1- and 2-row accordions as "the devil's lungs" and "instruments of sin". Little diatonic accordions could be heard wherever young people gathered to dance, on bridges or in barns, to have fun together and to enjoy one another's company. 

Though the sound produced improved and transcriptions of concert music began to be played on accordions, not until the 1970s did parishes gradually come to accept them to any extent and permit accordion players to perform in their churches. Acoustically, churches are in most cases almost perfect for accordion, "the modern miniature organ".
 
Having for decades now given concerts in churches, I began to debate the accordion's potential as a means of communicating "purely" sacred music. To my delight, three composers set to work: Kaj-Erik Gustafsson, Petri Makkonen and Matti Murto. The main item on this record is without any question the Miss Brevis by Kaj-Erik Gustafsson -  the world's very first Mass for accordion.
-Matti Rantanen
 

Matti Rantanen (b.1952) is one of the leading figures on the international classical accordion scene. He is i.a. two-time winner of the Nordic Accordion Competition, the very first head of classical accordion studies in Sibelius Academy, and has inspired numerous composers to write for accordion..