Balalaika virtuoso Sasha (Alexander) Ressetar from Harrisburg, PA
Balalaika virtuoso Alexander Ressetar from Harrisburg, PA is available for hire for all kind of performances solo, or with a folk band or balalaika orchestra. Dancers are also available upon request.
Alexander (Sasha) first heard the balalaika when he was a child.
He was born in 1963 in San Antonio, Texas at Lackland Air Force Base.
At three years of age he started to listen to old Russian records.
His father was serving as a Russian Orthodox
priest at that time.
He had a collection of Russian choral and instrumental music which included the
Serge Jaroff Male Choir and Sasha Polinoff's orchestra. At that time, Polinoff played the balalaika
in Russian reastaurants in New York City. At a very early age Sasha decided to be like Polinoff.
Ressetar started playing balalaika when Mrs. Anastasia Karnow from Philadelphia
organized a Russian folk balalaika orchestra at the parish in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Unfortunately, this was not yet the musical instrument of choice.
By age 16 Sasha was playing a guitar in a punk rock band.
He picked up the balalaika again 4 years later when he was
a student at the Art Institute of Pittsburg.
He was stayd with balalaika ever since.
Sasha began working in New York City in 1986 and within one month he was
playing russian music at the RASPUTIN Restaurant on West 46th Street.
Since that time he was played at many restaurants all over Big Apple.
Some of them, like THE RUSSIAN TEA ROOM, are still famous but many others have gone out of business.
It is hard to make a living as a musician and Sasha relies on other jobs to make a living.
For him the hardship is an acceptable price for playing to an appreciative audience.
Some of the other things Sasha has done including visiting the former U.S.S.R. (now Russia) for Andreev Balalaika Centennial
and appearing as a balalaika player in an episode of LAW AND ORDER, SPECIAL VICTIMS UNIT, a cerial television program on CBS.
Sasha currently lives and works in Harrisburg, Pensylvania and plays balalaika at the Hilton and Towers and other venues.
Russian Balalaika Duo - program of Russian, Ukrainian, Gypsy, Cossack, Klezmer, and international music and songs performed on balalaika, garmoshka and guitars. New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania. video