Jaroslaw Bester – an accordion player and a composer, a graduate of the Krakow Academy of Music, a prizewinner of several international and Polish accordion contests.
He has formed The Cracow Klezmer Band – the only Polish music ensemble that permanently cooperates with John Zorn’s prestigious Tzadik label in New York City.
In his performing style, he combines his wide experience in classical music with many other genres and makes use of some clear improvised forms to create an unusually powerful mix that presents some first-time ever colors and techniques to be achieved on the accordion. Thanks to these skills, he is considered today one of the very original musicians of the worldwide.
His oeuvre, apart from some CDs on the NYC Tzadik label, as well as guest appearances on other CDs, includes some recordings for radio and television in Germany, Sweden, Finland and Poland.
He has co-performed with and arranged or composed for many great classical and vanguard musicians. Among them one can cite such outstanding artists as: John Zorn, John McClean, Don Byron, Grazyna Auguscik, Frank London, Ernie Adams, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Waldemar Malicki, Vadim Brodsky, Vitold Rek, Jorgos Skolias, Bronek Duzy and many others.
Selected prizes and distinctions:
· 2nd Prize – Russian and Soviet Music Festival (POLAND 1987)
· 1st Prize – All-Poland Accordion Contest (POLAND 1991)
· 1st Prize – I Accordion Music Festival (POLAND 1993)
· 1st Prize – II Accordion Music Festival (POLAND 1993)
· 2nd Prize – All-Poland Accordion Contest (POLAND 1994)
· 1st Prize – Interprovincial Accordion Contest (POLAND 1994)
· 2nd Prize – All-Poland Accordion Contest (POLAND 1996)
· 5th Prize – International Accordion Contest (GERMANY 1996)
· 1st Prize – All-Poland Accordion Contest (POLAND 1997)
· Special Prize of the President of the Lodz Music Academy (POLAND 1997)
· 2nd Prize in the Chamber Ensembles category (POLAND 1998)
· 3rd Prize in the Trio category at the III International Krzysztof Penderecki Chamber Music Contest (POLAND 1999)
· 1st Prize in the Trio category at the IV International Accordion Meetings (POLAND 2000)
· Grand Prix of the President of the Polish National Radio (POLAND 2000)
De Profundis -Tzadik New York 2000, TZ 7143
The Warriors – Tzadik New York 2001, TZ 7157
Bereshit -Tzadik New York 2003, TZ 7183
Sanatorium Under the Sign of the Hourglass -Tzadik New York 2005, TZ 7349
Balan – Tzadik New York 2006 TZ 7358
Remembrance – Tzadik New York 2007 TZ 8116
Masada Anniversary ediotion vol. 2 –“ Voices of the Wilderness –Tzadik New York 2003, TZ 7172
Metamorphoses – Tzadik 2012, TZ 8170
The Golden Land – Tzadik 2013, TZ 8178
Krakoff (DVD /Audio) – For Tune 2013
PastForward – GMA Records 1724-5 (2003) produced by Grazyna Auguscik
River – GMA Records 1724-4 (2001/2002) produced by Grazyna Auguscik
Sztetlach – Dembitzer Music (2005) produced by Ireneusz Socha
Vitold Rek & EastWestHome – Taso Music ( 2006) produced by Vitold Rek
Grazyna Auguscik Group Live Sounds –GMA Records ( 2007) Producer by Grazyna Auguscik
A ty siej ( Habakuk ) – EMI Poland ( 2007)
Bal u Pana Boga – J. Słowińska & J. Bester – 2010