Sergej Tchirkov was born in St.Petersburg and studied the accordion at the Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatoire of St.Petersburg. He was awarded prizes at many international competitions and received the scholarship from the European Centre of Arts Hellerau (Dresden). In 2003-2005 he took a postgraduate course and qualified as an assistant teacher in accordion performance and chamber music.
Sergej has attended seminars and lectures on composition conducted by Sergej Slonimsky, Gerard McBurney, Terry Riley, Paul-Hainz Dittrich and Ernst-Helmuth Flammer. In 2004 he received a scholarship from the European Centre of Arts Hellerau (EzdK) where he also studied improvisation with Anton Lukaszeviece.
Sergej Tchirkov has been awarded prizes at the following international competitions:
- 2003 – Citta di Capistrello, Italy
- 2001 – Lasse Pihlajamaa competition for virtuoso accordionists, Finland
- 2001 – Coupe Mondiale, UK
- 1999 – Citta di Castelfidardo, Italy
- 1999 – Citta di Lanciano, Italy
- 1998 – Citta di Castelfidardo, Italy
- 1996 – Coupe Mondiale jr. Cat, Slovak republic
- 1996 – Andreev competition, Russia
Sergej has collaborated with composers such as Oscar Bianchi, Pierluigi Billone, William Blank, Hanna Eimermacher, Ivan Fedele, Boris Filanovsky, Tamara Friebel, Eva-Maria Houben, Peter Jakober, Esajas Järnegard, Thomas Kessler, Dmitri Kourliandski, Klaus Lang, Phillippe Leroux, Sergej Newski, John Palmer, José-Maria Sanchez-Verdú, Martin Schlumpf, Dieter Schnebel, Mathias Steinauer, Alfred Zimmerlin, Gérard Zinsstag and more, and premiered numerous works featuring the accordion. He has performed at various new music festivals including Dresden Days of Contemporary Music, Moscow Forum, MärzMusik, Klangspuren Schwaz, Musikfestival Bern, Archipel Genève. In 2002 he was guest performer at EXPO 2002 (Switzerland) and in 2014 Main Artis Guest at PASImusic Festival (Finland).
Sergej has played both as a soloist and a member of an orchestra, including with the Mariinsky Theatre Orchestra, the St.Petersburg Philharmonic Orchestra, the Musica Aeterna ensemble, Neue Dresdner Kammermusik, KNM-Berlin, AJO ensemble Bodo, Ensemble BATIDA, Ensemble Interface, Collegium Novum Zürich and more, under the direction of Valery Gergiev, Teodor Currentzis, Timothy Redmond, Titun Engel a.o.
He has been a member of following ensembles: Pro Arte Foundation eNsemble (St.Petersburg), Zero ensemble (Zürich), Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble, Studio of New Music (Moscow), CNMRG computer and new music research group (St.Petersburg)
Tchirkov has been a guest lecturer at many european universities and academies of music including Zurich University of Arts, Art University of Graz, Gothenburg University, Norwegian Academy of music Oslo, Geneva Conservatory, Kuopio Conservatory of Music, Kazakh National University of Arts Astana, EMS Stockholm and often adjudicates at international competitions. His thesis on John Palmer’s DRANG for accordion solo has been recommended as an education tool for higher schools of music. He has been an expert of the Pro Arte Foundation music programs and a chairman of the expert council of the St. Petersburg Contemporary Music Centre ‘ReMusik.org’. He is editor of the website dedicated to contemporary music of Switzerland and served as the curator of the Alpenfest Project 2014 – a large scale festival of swiss music in Moscow.
Since 2011 he has taught at the International New Music Academy organised by the Moscow Contemporary Music Ensemble in the town of Tchaikovsky.
Sergej Tchirkov works as a lecturer, musicologist and performer at the Centre of Contemporary Music at Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory and is assistant artistic director of the Studio for New Music ensemble Moscow