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Toronto subway musicians Andrei Denga, Alexander Popov and Eduard Kagansky plays from the soul, although they are mostly ignored by GO

commuters.

They are Russian musicians, middle-aged and older, who play for thousands every day.

Huddled in thick clothing, Torontonians hurriedly rush into the city’s subway system to avoid the sharp, biting winds of the wintry cold.

The pairing of their instruments, violin and accordion, may be unusual in Canada, but they go together like flashing eyes and a rose in the teeth.

Underneath the bustling streets of the city, commuters find refuge in whatever semblance of heat that emanates from the dark underground. It’s here, buried deep beneath the streets that we can sometimes find music, thriving and echoing in the twisting halls of Toronto’s subterranean. But who knows their names? Who even lifts weary heads to see them?  Who notices? Not the morning commuters charging between the GO station and the TTC subway at Union, immune to the waltzes, the polkas and folk songs, the Bach and the Mozart. Their heads are down, and mentally they are already at their desks, fretting about spreadsheets and bottom lines. Yet I hope their spirits are listening and being lifted even thought they might not show any outward signs.

Go through the whole post to read the inspiring story of underground talent


Huddled in thick clothing, Torontonians hurriedly rush into the city’s subway system to avoid the sharp, biting winds of the wintry cold. Underneath the bustling streets of the city, commuters find refuge in whatever semblance of heat emanates from the dark underground. It’s here, buried deep beneath the streets that we can sometimes find music, thriving and echoing in the twisting halls of Toronto’s subterranean.

Andrei Denga begins playing amidst the bustling commute, illuminating the deep, dark alcoves of the lower underground with sound. The people around him are hushed as he strings and fingers his way across his violin. He moves alongside his own beat, his entire body shifting as if he himself were the music he was playing.

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Denga first came to Canada in 1991, shortly before the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Bringing his family over for fear of their safety, he said that Russia had become unstable with the rising movement of the Perestroika.

After working several odd jobs at a restaurant, an auto shop and as a poster distributor, he got his license to busk in 1993, and has been playing in the underground ever since. He is given a schedule by the TTC, and has over 25 spots from which he can play from in the subway.


StreeXB would like to thank Canculture for this article. Click here to read the inspiring story of the accomplished violinist who has decided to take his work underground.

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