You might think there is little in common between Bach and Klezmer, or between Jazz and traditional Russian music. However, the Transatlantic Duo of Alexander Paperny (balalaika) and Vladimir Fridman (guitar and vocals) commands their instruments with virtuosity to seamlessly bring together all these diverse music styles in their exploration of the world’s musical heritage. Alexander and Vladimir began working together in Moscow, Russia where they played together for many years in the eccentric show group Jazz Balalaika, touring all over the world and releasing several CDs. During the same time, they performed as a duo, playing a variety of music, from traditional Russian melodies to the tangos of Astor Piazzolla.
Eventually, Vladimir moved to the United State of America and Alexander to Germany.
Currently, Vladimir lives in Maryland, USA. He is widely known as a guitar player, composer, arranger and singer in the Greater Washington/Baltimore area. Vladimir is an active member of Music Pilgrim Trio and runs a very successful Guitar Studio. He is a winner of Washington Area Music Awards (Wammies).
Alexander lives in Hamburg, Germany where he performs with the Balalaika Nuevo trio and solo, and teaches at the Johannes-Brahms-Konservatorium in Hamburg.
Despite the distance, these two musicians and colleagues did not separate and since 2005 they continue to regularly collaborate, record albums, and perform a series of concerts in the Washington D.C. area, Massachusetts, California as well as internationally in Germany, France and the Netherlands.
The music of TransAtlantic Duo unites vastly different styles from Russian, Jewish, traditional American, Jazz, Latino and even classical music. Vladimir and Alexander joined them in an inspired way that is more than the sum of its parts. Two masterful players have an energized approach to music – a sound completely their own.
Erwin Schütterle, Theater–Cabare Kanapee, Hannover
The convergence of guitar and balalaika of the Transatlantic Duo is totally unique and exquisite.
Thomas Matheys, “Die Wertanlage” Stage, Düsseldorf
The Duo has absorbed many musical traditions and blended them with excellent style and marvelous virtuosity.
Hans-Jurgen Rumpf , KaufmanHouse stage, Lauenburg
The original arrangements of Transatlantic Duo melted various musical styles into one colorful concert. The great virtuosity of Vladimir and Alexander transforms every piece they play into a sparkling and unrivaled experience. The dialogue between guitar and balalaika is always full of enchanted soul of music, impeccable tone, and beautiful harmonies. The audience was captivated by their performance.
L. & A. Grinberg , Gaithersburg , Maryland