MADREPERLA’s brilliance stems not only from the sheer audacity of juxtaposing the accordion with a full orchestra, nor from the fact that it succeeds spectacularly in doing so. What’s most intoxicating is Richard Galliano’s fusion of symphonic writing with eclectic styles of dance – the pavane, the mazurka, the milonga, the forró, the waltz – whose particular zest, allure and élan pour forth torrentially from these compositions.

Today, Richard is our featured artist in “The Inside Story,” a blog series exploring the inner workings and personalities of our composers and performers. Read on to learn how he combats stage fright with one simple phrase, and how his father and the great Astor Piazzolla impacted his artistry…

What have been your biggest inspirations on your musical journey?

Claude Debussy, Frédéric Chopin, and Clifford Brown.

If you could collaborate with anyone, who would it be?

Herbie Hancock is the current musician whose music touches me the most.

What emotions do you hope listeners will experience after hearing your work?

A feeling of love, joy, and happiness.

How do you prepare for a performance?

I always tell myself that “I have to give the audience the best of my artistry.” This is my only medicine against stage fright.

Where and when are you at your most creative?

When I feel fragile and strong at the same time. The place where I think I’m the most creative is on stage because of the urgency and the energy that the audience communicates to me.

What musical mentor had the greatest impact on your artistic journey? Is there any wisdom they’ve imparted onto you that still resonates today?

Obviously my mentors are first of all my father Lucien Galliano, eminent music teacher, magnificent accordionist, and composer. He is the one who taught me music and made me want to make it my profession. My second musical father was Astor Piazzolla. Both of them advised me to simply be myself, by cultivating my qualities but also my flaws.

Explore Richard Galliano’s Latest Release



MADREPERLA is available now from Navona Records. Click here to visit the catalog page and explore this album.