In his Home town of Fossil Oregon, US Born, Polish American, Sean Koreski began to play the Pan-Flute when he was only 5 years old. His first Pan Pipe was a gift from his Father who was eager for him to learn something traditional from East Europe. The Original way to write the Family name was CHORZHESKI which upon immigrating to the United States from Kiedrowo near Łekno, a Village in the district of Gmina Wągrowiec Poland, Sean’s Family decided to Simplify to the present day KORESKI which was easier for the Americans to Pronounce.
Fossil Oregon, where it all began.
During this Time in his Life He was thirsty for anything Pan Flute. He listened to a cassette of classical Pan Flute and Pipe Organ by Romanian Pan-Flutist Gheorghe Zamfir, until he wore it out!
He immediately began to show an uncommon skill for the Pan Pipes (called Fletnia Pana in Polish) and by the age of 10 he already had a good repertoire of Classical Music. After all, what else would a good Polish boy learn to play?
Nine Year Old Sean Koreski
When he was 15 he was introduced to the Traditional Music of the Andes by his Grandfather who had a great appreciation for that music (not to mention a collection of Cassettes and Records of that Lovely Music). Filled with inspiration from his Grandfather and the high desert surroundings he was born in, he found new expression through this Music. Adapting to the style of Pan Flute played in South American Music was not difficult for him, since he was already playing the very sophisticated Pan Flute techniques used for Classical Music.
Sean Koreski's Grandfather Merritt.
After learning to play Andean Music on the south American style Pan flute, Sean’s Brother Philip began to learn Charango (a small 10 stringed instrument from the Andes) and also the Guitar. They immediately began to play as a duo soon to be joined "for a brief time" by South American Percussionist Ramon Chavira.
Percussionist Ramon Chavira (left) Sean (middle) accompanied by Brother Philip (right).
Later they were joined by a friend (Robert Braxton) and the first group was born. All This happened by the age of 17. This first group called Los Tres Amigos and then later renamed to Achichakpa (Mayan for: where the water flows) Had good success for 2 years, but due to other pursuits the group separated.
Los Tres Amigos Playing a House Concert. Robert Braxton (Left) Sean (Middle) Philip (Right).
Shortly there after Sean met Benjamin Sandivar,, a guitarist from Bolivia who invited him to travel to Bolivia. So later he decided to live in Bolivia, when he turned 19, to learn the Artistic accent found in the music of the Andes from the Natives themselves. After all, he thought, “who would want to hear a foreign accent in a dignified traditional music such as this?”
Sean Koreski has a love for all kinds of Pan Flutes and since the Andes has a remarkable variety of different styles of Pan Flutes he spent much of his time in Bolivia researching and collecting Andean Pan Flutes.
Sean's Collection of Pan Flutes in 1999. His European Pan Flute is in the middle next to the Drum.
He expressed his desire to play the Music of the Andes to some of the locals he met,, and before long, he was being invited to impromptu Andean style jam sessions.
Sean Plays the Zampoña (an Andean Pan Flute) and Drum with Locals in a Jam Session in Bolivia.
After living there a few months he met other friends one of whom was Jose Luis Barron, with whom he began to make plans to form a new group. After joining with other friends Roos Emanuel Hernandez, Misael Hernandez, Luz Ecos and Obed Ecos, the group Wiñay Pacha was Born in the year 2000. . The name of the Music Group is from Quechua, the Language of the Incas, It means Earth Eternal. In 2002 The group released an album titled Ajina Kachun (no longer in production).
Earlier in 2001 Sean and his wife Liliam were married and by 2003 they found they were going to be parents, This lead Sean to a difficult decision. Due to political tension at the time, the government of Boliiva was getting less friendly with American Citizens (Yes,, even Polish Americans) So after much thought Sean and his wife decided to move back to the US so that their child could be born as a US Citizen.
Anticipating this move Sean Prepared for life as a Soloist, Since his Brother Philip and his Friend Robert Braxton, back in the US, had gone on to other pursuits. While on a brief trip to Puno Peru, he observed some clever soloists that could play guitar and Pan Flute at the same time, so upon returning to Sucre Bolivia, the city he lived in, he asked the guitarist of his group Wiñay Pacha to teach him some Guitar. He experimented with this combination until he could play a complete repertoire as a soloist, playing Guitar and Andean Pan Flute at the same time. Later, in the US Sean released his Solo Album, Andando Solo “Walking Alone” in 2005(Now out of production).
During this time, Sean’s Friend Robert Braxton would still Perform Concerts with him as a duo. Though Sean had learned to appreciate being a Soloist he certainly enjoyed the extra energy Robert brought to the stage! (not to mention - it's just a good thing to hang out with friends!)
Sean with his Old Friend Robert Braxton.
Around 2005 Sean Koreski Met Ecuadorian Artist Alex Llumiquinga from Grupo Chayag. Alex was living in the Northwest where Sean was living, so they began playing Concerts Together as a Duo.
Though Sean was bitten by the Soloist bug so to speak he still enjoyed immensely the experience of Playing Concerts with other Musicians. So it didn’t take long for Robert Braxton to join the Group which became a Trio titled simply “Beautiful Flute” (hence the name of the website). Sean Thought that the name would be much simpler to remember instead of the previous Tradition with Spanish, Quechua and Mayan names. The group was joined by Fernando Lopez a Bolivian Musician making it a group of 4 Musicians for a time.
In 2007 Sean Koreski Released his 2 Original Albums of his New Age Andean Compositions which mix Pan Flute with modern Rhythms. The Albums are called Mountain Winds and Forgotten Dream. Another Album was released in 2009 and produced for a short time, this Album was simply called Beautiful Flute Volume 3.
Sean Koreski and Alex LLumiquinga Performing as a Duo at Creswell Oregon Public Library.
In 2010 Fernando returned to his home country Bolivia, and later in 2012 Robert Braxton had to leave the group because of some difficult life circumstances. Alex and Sean Continued to perform well into 2012 but Alex had to move to be closer to his mother in-law whose health was poor.
Fortunately Sean was no stranger to performing solo,, so he continued performing diligently! During a chat with a fellow musician John English in 2012, the subject of Classical Music came up. John thought that the Pan Flute would be Beautiful in Classical Music. Sean was happy to mention that in Europe, classical music has always had a secret relationship with the Pan Flute (Does any body remember Mozart’s the Magic Flute?) John Suggested to Sean that he should look into getting back into it! This Advise came at a time when Sean was feeling a need to get back to his roots as a Musician, So taking Johns Advise, Sean resolved to make that happen.
The Pan Flute in Classical Music as illustrated in this 18th century Figurine by Chelsea Derby.
Sean wanted to continue as a soloist, but classical music was far too complicated to play on a rustic Andean Pan Flute with a Guitar. It would take returning exclusively to the East European Pan Flute,, which since it’s curved,, could not be held in any kind of holder that would leave his hands free to play some other instrument. Sean didn’t want to use backing tracks since he felt it would cheapen the experience.
When Sean was a Child he had another interest aside from the Pan Flute, it was the inner workings of the Pipe Organ. Yes it’s true, while other children in his school were reading about Hot Rods and Space Ships, Sean was reading up on how to build a Pipe Organ. So here, years later, he realized that a Pipe Organ could be made to play automatically. This would have many advantages, primarily it wouldn’t be a recording,, it would be the real thing playing fully acoustic,, no hokey sounding synthesizers, or pale and lifeless recordings,, It would Truly be as if he had his own personal Orchestra. Since he already had a great deal of experience building Pan Flutes and some good knowledge about carpentry passed on to him from his Father and Grand Father,, he decided to get to work on his self playing, portable Pipe Organ! Naturally Sean Decided to make all the pipes out of Wood. He felt that the warm fluty tones produced by wooden pipes would blend better with the Pan Flute.
Three years later in 2016 he had it finished and he immediately recorded a new Album titled Serenity which integrated some of the Classical Songs he first played when he was a child along with some new Classical Music. He has been performing this new repertoire ever since. He remarks “It felt like returning home after a long journey! I’ll be ever grateful for all the steps I took along the way, All the Friends I made and for how they’ve changed me, but I’m glad to be back to my East European roots.” Sean Koreski is commonly heard playing in the Northwestern United States.
Half Finished Portable Pipe Organ on Sean's Work Bench.