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My name is Elena Fainshtein, and I am a professional musician. My instrument of choice from childhood has been the button accordion, traditionally known as bayan. 

I have started to play this unique instrument at the age of five years old. I first took private lessons and then attended the School for Gifted Kids in Minsk, Belarus, where my second instrument of choice was piano. Then, I went to the Minsk Music College, graduating with the highest grades possible. After music college, I attended the Academy of Music in Minsk, which I graduated in 1987.

I have enjoyed performing from a very young age. Born into a family of teachers, I had the opportunity to play at school for many occasions, at parties, and even at weddings. A piano was often not available so I took my accordion with me and performed at many different venues.

At the age of 17 at music college I began playing as an accordion duo with my classmate, Gregory Fainshtein, who became my husband and music partner for life six years later. Since our school days, Gregory and I have performed in a variety of concerts all over the world, including Belarus, Russia, Georgia, Lithuania, Ukraine, Germany, Israel, and the United States. 

Gregory and I have been members of the National Accordion Association for over a decade. We have performed nationally at various conventions and are actively engaged in introducing the accordion to younger generations who have never been introduced to this unique instrument in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

We take every possible opportunity to perform at various venues and have expanded our musical services to private parties, festivals, events, and weddings.

2014 03 02 russian winter in dallas tx photo serge taran the dalllas telegraph 23

I have been teaching piano and accordion for over 25 years in three different languages, working with children and adults in Belarus, part of the former Soviet Union, in 1991 we moved to Israel, and from 2003 we live in Plano, Texas, and I work in my private home studio, called Musical Expressions. I like to share my musical passion to my adult and children students!

Recently, I took the role of conductor of the Happy Fingers Accordion Band, which was assembled with the purpose of getting more accordion enthusiasts engaged in performance in an effort to showcase their talents to a greater audience.

For more information about my passion for the accordion, read this feature from the Dallas Morning News and watch my TEDxMountainViewCollege talk (also featured at the right side of the page)