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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Apr-2020
Previous News | Past News Index | Next News


Titano Accordion Company

Highlights

Editor's Note
Breaking News: Louis F Coppola Passed Away - April 20, 2020. The Accordion World Has Lost One of its Finest
Internet Streaming 6th May World Accordion Day (WAD) Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA) Show
Michael Bridge to Perform in Solo Live Stream Concert on April 6
Accordion Cancellations or Postponements Due to Corona Virus
Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts Postpones March Festival Until July 24
AAA Festival 2021 Already Well Advanced
COVID-19 UPDATE from ATG President Joe Natoli
Accordion Noir Virtual Concert
Accordion Babes 2021-2022 Accordion Babes Calendar Calls for Artists
Accordionist Cory Pesaturo & Violinist Leah Zeger Create an Album in 3 Hours
ONLINE ONLY - The Big Squeeze -

Gary Dahl eSheet music, sent by email, secure bank server system

Reports for Concerts, Masterclasses, Competitions, Festivals, etc.

Just Released! “Vignettes, Short Pieces for Accordion” Delightful original compositions by Guy Klucevsek
Accordionist George Secor Passes Away
Augustinas Rakauskas, Lithuanian Independence Celebration
Kevin Friedrich St Patrick’s Day Entertainment in Dargaville – New Zealand
Dr. William Schimmel Releases New Video
The New England Digital Accordion Orchestra: Now on YouTube!
30th AAMS Festival March 6th & 7th in New Jersey
Frank Mucedola Accordion School Receives 2020 Best of Auburn Award
Yvonne Marts Donates Very Special Accordions to AWAM
Mary Mancini & Mario Tacca Daily Videos
Brooklyn Accordion Club Future Events
Accordionist Rob Reich Presents Online Concerts Every Friday

Over 2,100 titles of eSheet music, sent to you by email, secure server bank online payment

Future events

2020 AAA Master Class & Concert Series in New York City Presented by Dr. William Schimmel
Leavenworth International Accordion Celebration Plans to go Ahead
San Francisco Accordion Club Reschedules April Meeting
2020 3rd Annual San Diego Accordion Camp Rescheduled to June 4-5
Cotati Accordion Festival August 22-23

The Ins and Outs of the Accordion by famous accordion repairer and tuner Thierry Benetoux

New and Updated Sites

Impact of Coronavirus on Stas Venglevski 5 Concerts - USA


Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Highlights


Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Editor's Note

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Rita BarneaTo all our accordionists and accordion enthusiasts:

The April www.accordionusa.com news is now online. We at AWW hope that you and your family are well during this world crisis. It is most unfortunate that the spread of Covid-19 has led to the postponement or cancellation of many international and national accordion events. We ask organizers to please keep us informed so we can let all our readers know.

A large number of events, especially regional are still going ahead and the USA News will continue to keep you informed of them. The April USA news contains many articles related to the changing dates.

Due to many event cancellations, the USA news is encouraging performers to send new videos to be considered for online publication in our Section: “Accordions TV” which will be online on May 1, 2020 in the May USA news. Please send all videos to Ritabelll@aol.com.

Please continue to email Editor Rita Barnea at Ritabelll@aol.com with details of your upcoming concerts, CD releases, competitions, festivals, performances etc. We will update any changes as received.

We hope that next month we will be able to publicize more upcoming live concerts. In the meantime, when you are home, watch the online performances of many accordionists around the world, take the time to take Skype lessons and practice your accordion.

Accordion Jazz Chords

Breaking News: Louis F Coppola Passed Away - April 20, 2020. The Accordion World Has Lost One of its Finest

by Joan Grauman, AAA Historian
Lou CoppolaThe American Accordionists' Association (AAA) is very saddened to report that our beloved Louis F. Coppola passed away this morning, April 20, 2020, from complications of Leukemia.

Born May 25, 1937 in Bridgeport, Connecticut, Lou, with his magnetic and endearing personality, spent his entire life spreading joy with his beautiful accordion music. A great ambassador for the accordion and a tremendous supporter of the AAA, Lou will be greatly missed!!

Please visit Lou’s attached bio, plus videos, Accordions Worldwide daily reports, and slideshow of Lou’s life. All of the above were prepared for Lou’s AAA Lifetime
Achievement Award, presented to him in Alexandria, Virginia, July 2018. To view these, please click on: Lou Coppola

PANcordion

Internet Streaming 6th May World Accordion Day (WAD) Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA) Show

by Kevin Friedrich, CIA Ambassador
World Accordion Day
Kevin Friedrich, Grayson MasefieldWorld Accordion Day (WAD) logoThe CIA is pleased to welcome you to World Accordion Day (WAD) on the official Coupe Mondiale Facebook streaming platform.

Since 2009, each May 6th, the CIA has been promoting World Accordion Day. Our first WAD was held on 6th May 2009, marking the 180th birthday of the accordion - May 6th 1829, the date the accordion was first patented, in Vienna, Austria, by Cyrillius Demien.

For 2020, with so much of the world in lockdown and restricted to their homes, the CIA is running a 12 hours WAD show on the Coupe Mondiale Facebook streaming with all recordings, interviews and performances will also be published on the World Accordion Day website and the World Accordion Day China server and local China platforms.

The show hosts are CIA former President and currrent CIA Ambassador Kevin Friedrich (USA) and CIA Music Committee Deputy Chairman Grayson Masefield with technical assistance from CIA Public Relations Harley Jones and Accordions Wordwide staff.

The exact broadcast times will be published here and on the WAD website in the next few days.

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

Michael Bridge to Perform in Solo Live Stream Concert on April 6

by Rita Barnea
Michael Bridge
Michael Bridge is pleased to announce his first solo live stream concert on April 6, 2019 at 3:PM EST thanks to Xenia Concerts. The program will include 50% acoustic accordion and 50% digital accordion.

Michael is a recent 2020 DMA Recital Competition Winner. Lauded as “a wizard of the accordion," Michael Bridge is internationally-renowned for his warm stage personality, stereotype-smashing versatility, and blazing virtuosity. Named one of CBC’s “30 Hot Classical Musicians Under 30”, he made his solo orchestral debut with the Boston Pops and gives over 100 concerts per year in Europe and the Americas. His debut solo album, “Overture”, was named CBC Album of the Week.

More than a classical musician, Michael simply describes his repertoire as ‘concert music’ – encompassing baroque, classical, and contemporary works, plus many of his own concert arrangements of folk music. Prolific in working with composers, Michael has given over 40 world premieres. He performs solo or with orchestra, and with his two ensembles – Bridge+Wolak and Ladom Ensemble – and has toured Poland, France, Italy, the U.K., Ecuador, the USA and in every Canadian province.

The April 6 concert will be live streamed on the Xenia Facebook page. You need to join the page and detailed instructions about how to attend will be sent to you.The mission of Xenia Concerts Inc. is to offer high quality music and arts performances, presentations, and educational programs, in an environment that welcomes those who might not have access to such events and activities due to physical, mental, or financial barriers.

For further information: michaelbridgemusic.com

James O'Brien eSheet music, emailed to you, secure bank server

Accordion Cancellations or Postponements Due to Corona Virus

by Rita Barnea
event postponedUnfortunately, due to corona virus, there are many accordion related events that are either cancelled or postponed. Here is a current list.

Email cancelled or postponed events to: Ritabelll@aol.com for immediate listing.

2020 National Accordion Convention in Texas - cancelled - they advise that hotel reservations can be cancelled using your confirmation number

Milwaukee Accordion Club - all March events cancelled - Future events will be dealt with as the conditions change.

AWAM World Accordion Day celebration (May 2nd) and Eighth Annual Dr. Willard A. Palmer Festival (May 3rd) - both cancelled

2020 AAA (American Accordionists Association) July 8th to 12th Festival in Alexandria - cancelled

Alex Meixner Band - all concerts cancelled for the next 2 months

2020 New England Music Festival in Newton, Massachusetts from 27th to 29th March – postponed until July 24-26. Everything will remain the same.

Hudson Valley Accordion Ensemble Concert in New York on March 26th - postponed

CAA Event Sponsored by the Cheshire Public Library on April 4 is cancelled

San Diego Accordion Camp - postponed until June 4

Accordion Pops Orchestra, July 20 concert is cancelled

San Francisco Accordion Club April concert is rescheduled to May 6

San Antonio Accordion Association has cancelled their March, April, and May 2020 meetings. Next scheduled meeting is June 30

For further information and to add to the list: Ritabelll@aol.com







Titano Accordion Company

Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts Postpones March Festival Until July 24

by Peggy Falcetti
LogoBecause of the Coronavirus Pandemic the New England Music Festival, (one of the largest in the USA), has been postponed. This event was scheduled to be held from March 27 to March 29, 2020. The 58th 3 day event has been rescheduled at the Newton Marriott Hotel from July 24 to July 26th, 2020

The Festival averages more than 1000 entries and 600 contestants from all across New England. Contestants must be entered thru an ATAM member. The only exception is the Adult Accordion division. Since the competition was cancelled only two weeks before the event, the set up of the event should remain the same.

Depending on the attendance remaining the same the committee plans to accept new entries from those who were not able to compete in the March event that was postponed. This will include adults not presently enrolled. A final decision will be made and appear in the June 1st issue of the US National Accordion News and the AAA Newsletter.

The Accordion Teachers Association of Mass. is proud to bestow Honorary Membership upon Rita Davidson Barnea at their Festival in July. Rita is the National Editor of the USA National Accordion News: www.accordionusa.com

For more information and questions about the ATAM Festival please go to the ATAM Web Site or

Contact Chairperson Peggy Falcetti: (413-204-1022).

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

AAA Festival 2021 Already Well Advanced

by Harley Jones
AAA logo
AAAposterAmerican Accordionists' Association (AAA) has moved on quickly from the 19 March announcement by President Dr. Joseph A. Ciccone "to cancel the AAA Festival 2020 in Alexandria, Virginia."

Within the week, the AAA is already advertising the AAA Festival 2021 that will be held July 14-18, 2021 at the Marriott Philadelphia West, PA 19428.

2021 will feature the Festival Orchestra conducted by Mary Tokarski, Competitions, Workshops, Vendors, Youth Involvement, Jazz Ensemble Junior & Senior, Fun Band and "The Divas" being the well known ladies of the AAA -Linda Soley Reed, Mary Tokarski, Beverly Roberts Curnow, Rita Barnea, Joan Grauman, Joanna Darrow, Jeanne Velonis, Marilyn O’Neil and Rachel Quirbach.

Further performers will be announced in the coming months.
The Divas

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

COVID-19 UPDATE from ATG President Joe Natoli

by Rita Barnea
2020 ATG PosterThe ATG 80th Anniversary Festival is scheduled for August 5-9, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.The deadline for the 2020 Competition is June 15, 2020.

ATG President Joe Natoli shares: “As you know by now, the ATG is very intensely planning our highly anticipated 80th Anniversary Festival celebration to be held in Los Angeles California August 5-9, 2020, with the DoubleTree by Hilton as our home base, while some of the concerts will also be in two nearby spectacular venues - the Aratani Theatre and Zipper Hall.
 
That being said and considering the current concerns with the CoVid-19 situation globally, we in America fully anticipate that the aggressive measures taken by our government today (3/17/2020) to put the CoVid-19 virus in check very quickly will enable the ATG to be fully functional and ready for a very memorable event in Los Angeles in August.  Even though the USA is not yet nearly as affected as most other nations, we know that the entire world is responding to this virus in kind, and therefore expect that we will be past the worst part of this very soon. 
 
However, because of these unprecedented and rapid developments, we at the ATG suggest that you do not make any travel or flight plans currently, especially since many airlines are not offering flight insurance, which could potentially cause you to forfeit your ticket investments. Let's all take a breath and wait for 2-3 weeks to determine how this will all unfold and at that time we will come back to you with continued updates, or sooner if we know something that was not apparent today. 

Please stay safe and healthy and now more than ever music becomes a great escape to take our minds off of these events. Many blessings to you all from the ATG.”

For further information: www.atgaccordions.com

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Accordion Noir Virtual Concert

by Harley Jones
Accordion NoirThe Accordion Noir radio show (Bruce Triggs and Rowan Lipkovit) from Vancouver, Canada are looking at curating an Accordion Noir virtual concert (perhaps the first in a series), collecting live video streams of accordion performances by gigging musicians suffering from event cancellations.

If you are interested in participating, or have strong feelings or good insights into the best technologies for getting the performances to the home audience please get in touch.

Check out Accordion Noir fans - Facebook.

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Accordion Babes 2021-2022 Accordion Babes Calendar Calls for Artists

by Rita Barnea
Accordion babesRenee de la Prade has announced that the official recruitment season for the 2021 and 2022 Accordion Babes Pin-Up Calendar is officially launched! Renee de la Prade shares, “I publish the Accordion Babes calendar for a lot of reasons. It has brought me in touch with many of my favorite people, women who are amazing artists whom I’m glad to now call friend. They are women who inspire me every single day. I don’t publish this calendar to make a lot of money, I don’t do all this work with recruiting, art direction, fundraising, printing, album mastering, distribution, in order to exploit people.

I publish this calendar because I’m a feminist and I want to fix my world’s broken ideal of femininity and celebrate the real heroes in our culture. I also want to celebrate accordions because they are really, really fun and cool. More people need to know about that!"

What is the Accordion Babes Pin-Up Calendar about? Why does it exist? Excerpts from their website: The Accordion Babes Pin-Up Calendar is the brainchild of Renée de la Prada, who was working as a street performer, professional Irish musician and accordion repair technician in the San Francisco Bay Area in 2008 when the first Accordion Babes calendar was produced. Through her job at Smythe’s Accordion Center, and through her gigs with the celtic band Culann’s Hounds, Renée got to meet hundreds of accordionists who travelled through California.

All photos, forms and songs for the 2021 calendar are requested by May 5th 2020 in order to be considered for the 2021 edition. Later applications will still be accepted, so don't worry if you miss the deadline, please still send in your art submission! That's why we're reserving spots for the 2022 edition.

The 2021 Edition will be themed "An Instrument Beyond Time" and will feature images which have a look associated to an era....any era. Do you love the 60's? The 80's? The Roaring 20's? 19th Century ballgowns? Film noir femme fatales? Or do you want to be a sci-fi space babe? Or a queen of ancient history?

The theme is broad-ranging so you can be creative with how you apply it to your photo. Wearing a vintage outfit in a plain-background studio can work just as well as having a more theatrical or natural background. Hopefully this theme will attract some amazing older lady artists (hint hint). It would be an honor to include you Grandes Dames of accordion in 2021!

This is an independently-produced project geared towards professional musicians. The Accordion Babes calendar features photos of beautiful, empowered, alluring women with their accordions. Each artist is featured not just in the calendar, but with one song on the accompanying CD.

Distribution is mainly in the USA, Canada, and Europe, but we have also shipped copies to Japan, Australia, and Brazil... the love of the accordion has spread all around the world, and people really like what we're doing; using sexy accordion photos to promote indie music and providing a useful calendar as well.

For further details email: editor@accordionpinupcalendar.com

Titano Accordion Company

Accordionist Cory Pesaturo & Violinist Leah Zeger Create an Album in 3 Hours

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Cory Pesaturo and Leah ZenerVideo 1: Cory and Leah create an album in three hours.

Cory Pesaturo and violinist/vocalist Leah Zeger felt they could create an albums worth of music in a 3 hour recording session. They recorded 8 Songs in 8 Genres in 3 Hours with ZERO Rehearsal. The video above includes snippets (many comedic) of how it came together; rehearsals were nothing but a few sentences, talking form and key, and even tune choices, were nothing but simple discussions. They achieved their goal.Cory thanks Stevie Blackie for his incredible studio work! Recorded in LA in 2020.

Born and raised in Houston, Texas, violinist and vocalist Leah Zeger comes from a family of professional symphony musicians. Having played the violin since the age of six, she has won numerous awards and soloed with orchestras in and around Texas. At 15 she made her solo debut playing the first movement of the Wiieniawski Violin Concerto with the Clear Lake Symphony Orchestra. At 19 years old, while still in college, Zeger won a tenured position in the first violin section of the Austin Symphony Orchestra, becoming the youngest member on staff. 
 
While in the Austin Symphony, Zeger played with soloists including Pinchas Zukerman, Leila Josefowitz, Yo Yo Ma, Elvis Costello, and bands such as Pink Martini,  The 4 Tops, the Big Bad Voodoo Daddies, and Charlie Daniels, with whom she was selected to duel on the tune Devil Went Down to Georgia.  Zeger's recent recording credits include collaborations with Michael Jackson's former musical director, Michael Bearden, Bear McCreary, composer of "Battlestar Galactica" and "The Walking Dead", Kenny Loggins, and string arrangements/recording for Billy Ray Cyrus' latest album. Most recently, Leah became a member of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra, performed with Miley Cyrus on her live unplugged show, recorded and produced her second album, "Pour Moi", produced and starred in her first major music video "The Man I Love", and toured with five-time Grammy-winner, Cee Lo Green as his solo violinist. 

Cory Pesaturo is known as both a visionary and a rebel within the main United States accordion world, but his main contribution, is his forward thinking of how the accordion should be used, played, and presented in the modern music world.

Cory is an accordion player, who also plays the piano, clarinet, and saxophone. He began playing at the age of nine, and in 2002, became one of the youngest persons to win the National Accordion Championship. He most recently won the 2011 Primus Ikaalinen World Championship and was the first ever American contestant.

Pesaturo won the Coupe Mondiale World Digital Accordion Championship in Auckland, New Zealand, and became the first American to win a World Accordion Championship since Peter Soave 25 years earlier. In June 2009, he won the Leavenworth International Championship, and International Jazz Championship. Pesaturo performed in 5 different continents during 2009; some countries included Canada, Italy, New Zealand, Tunisia and Japan. Cory is one of only four accordionists in history to win a World Championship on both acoustic and electronic accordion, and is the only person to also win a world championship in jazz.

Cory Pesaturo plays a modern electric accordions. This particular accordion has a full vinyl skin, and midi-sequenced LED's in the grill connected to the keys in a symmetric pattern. He was accepted on the accordion at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, MA where he studied Contemporary Improvisation and a variety of music styles, including Italian and French folk music, Bulgarian and Jewish music, Classical music and Jazz. He became the second person to major in and graduate as an accordionist at the New England Conservatory.

For further information: Cory.pesaturo@gmail.com

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

ONLINE ONLY - The Big Squeeze -

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
The Big SqueezeThe Big Squeeze returns for its 14th annual contest and concert series !

ENTRY FORM: https://forms.gle/9LwMdyp6oGko7Beq9

Online entry deadline extended to April 5, 2020. The Big Squeeze will keep on! Judging will be done online and finalists and winners will be announced in April and May. Stay tuned for updates! All live events after March 12 have been canceled due to Covid 19 preparedness.


UPDATED SCHEDULE

April 5 / Deadline for video entries
April 15 / Conjunto Semi-Finalists Announced
April 25 / Finalists Announced
May 1 / Grand Prize Winners Announce


THIS WAS PLANNED AND IS CANCELLED!!!!
Schedule:
2:00 Contestants check in
3:00 Live Auditions begin
4:30 Special performance by Centro Cultural Viva Mexico

Interested players are encouraged to submit an application ahead of the showcase date to reserve a slot or arrive an hour before the showcase begins to fill out an application. Those who live more than 20 miles from a showcase may also mail or email their entries to arrive at Texas Folklife no later than March 22nd at 12midnight.

Email bigsqueeze@texasfolklife.org with questions or complete an application at texasfolklife.org/bigsqueeze2020

ENTRY FORM: https://forms.gle/q4BytbFaydUc1G7CA

2020 Big Squeeze Schedule

Saturday, Feb. 15 / Pasadena / Macro Plaza Mall, in partnership with The PEACE (Pasadena Education, Arts, & Cultural Engagement) Center

Saturday, April 4 / Edinburg / Conjunto Semi-Finals / Museum of South Texas History
Sunday, April 19 / Big Squeeze Finals and Concert / Bullock Texas State History Museum

Interested players are encouraged to submit an application ahead of the showcase date to reserve a slot or arrive an hour before the showcase begins. Those who live more than 20 miles from a showcase may also mail or email their entries to arrive at Texas Folklife no later than March 22nd at 12midnight. The complete contest rules and entry forms are available online at texasfolklife.org/bigsqueeze2020 or by calling 512-441-9255.

The Big Squeeze is presented by Texas Folklife as part of its mission to preserve and present Texas’ diverse cultural heritage. Since 2007, Texas Folklife has promoted Texas accordion music genres through the Big Squeeze program. More than 300 young, talented players from dozens of Texas communities have participated in the program, which supports these vital community-based accordion music traditions.

The 2020 season of Texas Folklife's Big Squeeze is supported by grants from the Texas Commission on the Arts, the City of Austin Cultural Arts Division, H-E-B, Texas Music Office, Rancho Alegre Radio, and the City of Houston through the Miller Theatre Advisory Board. Additional support is provided by regional partners.

More Info: https://texasfolklife.org/article/big-squeeze-2020

Jon Hammond CD's for Sale

Reports for Concerts, Masterclasses, Competitions, Festivals, etc.


Just Released! “Vignettes, Short Pieces for Accordion” Delightful original compositions by Guy Klucevsek

by Joan Grauman
Guy K“Vignettes, Short Pieces for Accordion” by Guy Klucevsek is now available online. Read in detail the review by Joan Grauman about this "delightful and mesmerizing book" containing 24 of Guy Klucevsek’s compositions for accordionists of all skill levels.

Full information by Joan Grauman including links to sound samples and purchase online at: VignettesArticle

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

Accordionist George Secor Passes Away

by Christine Johnstone
George SecorVideo: George Secor plays "Misty" on the Moschino free bass accordion

Accordionist George Secor sadly passed away in March. George performed regularly in the USA and was a guest at the 2015 National Accordion Association Convention in Plano, Texas where he skillfully demonstrated the Moschino free bass system. His classical training was clearly evident in his performance and he had switched to the Moschino free bass system in 1961.

At the convention he also took part in the Arlyn Visentin’s 15 Minutes of Fame, and performed Prelude & Fugue in C Minor, The Holy City and Canzone per Sonare No. 2 (in duo with Bob Mansfield) at the Saturday evening concert.

He will be sadly missed.

Over 2,100 titles of eSheet music, sent to you by email, secure server bank online payment

Augustinas Rakauskas, Lithuanian Independence Celebration

by Rita Barnea
Augustinas Rakauskas
Augustinas Rakauskas and Rita BarneaPicture above: Augustinas Rakauskas, Greta Staponkute-Rakau, Neringa Radenaite
Picture right: Rita Barnea & Augustinas Rakauskas

On Sunday, March 8, 2019 we attended a fascinating, informative, entertaining and excellent event sponsored by the Philadelphia Chapter of the Lithuanian American Community, Inc.

We were attending the 30th Anniversary of Lithuanian Independence celebration with a concert by Tutto a Dio with Augustinas Rakauskas (accordion), Greta Staponkute-Rakau (viola) plus Neringa Radenaite (soprano), a fabulous, virtuosic performance by all three.

Additionally, there were choral and dance presentations by the Lithuanian community. All ages performed ranging from a children’s choir with the youngest being three years old, adult choir, and dance groups of all ages.

The Lithuanian Ambassador to the United Nations opened the program. An informative film highlighting the contributions of Lithuanians to all fields of life was shown. The people who attended were mostly from the local Lithuanian community and are very proud of their heritage.

Augustinas, speaking his native Lithuanian, introduced the selections in a friendly manner. The beginning of his program was very dramatic and impressive. The three musicians entered from the back of the hall, each one performing as they walked down the aisle to the front of the stage. Included in their program were native folk songs which the audience sang to. Even though we could not understand the words, the feelings expressed were very loving and emotional.

Augustinas and Greta share, “This year (officially on March 11) is the 30th Anniversary when Lithuania has regained its independence. Our goal for this 30th Anniversary of Lithuania is to make Thirty-Concert tour. This includes additional concerts in Switzerland and Lithuania too. One club had to cancel at the last moment so this is why you can see only 29 concerts on the list: 2020Anniversary.pdf

Augustinas

The Ins and Outs of the Accordion by famous accordion repairer and tuner Thierry Benetoux

Kevin Friedrich St Patrick’s Day Entertainment in Dargaville – New Zealand

by Christine Johnstone
Kevin
The Lifestyler newspaper in Dargaville, New Zealand reported this week that although accordionist Kevin Friedrich’s concert entitled “An American Journey” an Afternoon of Music with Kevin Friedrich and Friends in Dargaville was cancelled due to Coronavirus regulations, that didn’t mean that the entertainer had to hang up his accordion altogether.

Kevin took his instrument to the Dargaville Primary School for St Patrick’s Day, much to the delight of staff and pupils. Kevin played a medley of songs both from Ireland and elsewhere around the world.

The event included a feast of green sweets and treats for all who attended.

Following this performance Kevin then went on to play at the Dargaville RSA for their St. Patrick’s Day Celebration.

Kevin

Gary Dahl eSheet music, sent by email, secure bank server system

Dr. William Schimmel Releases New Video

by Rita Barnea
Dr. William SchimmelDr. William Schimmel has released his new video, “The Mystical Accordion” Composed/Performed by William Schimmel. Filmed by Micki Goodman

Dr. Schimmel said, “It has a symphonic quality and has a feel for the times that we are in now - in a good sense.”

The movements include:

1 Oceanus

2  La Fuliggene di Roma

3  Tango Gnosis

4   Symphonie Orphee

5  Ascension Flamenco

For further information: Accordionbill@gmail.com

The New England Digital Accordion Orchestra: Now on YouTube!

by Peggy Falcetti
Video: New England Digital Accordion Orchestra - Chatham First Night 1/1/20

The New England Digital Accordion Orchestra, founded and conducted by Sam Falcetti, was featured at the 29th annual First Night celebration in Chatham, MA last year. This 21-piece Orchestra was one of the 70 bands that performed throughout 10 different venues at this event. Two concert programs were played at the First United Methodist Church with over 400 people in attendance. Thanks to Bert Quirbach, Jim Avedisian, Marissa Falcetti, and Don McMahon for making this entire project happen, starting with the video taken at the concert to the editing and uploading of the video to YouTube.

This one of a kind orchestra is made up of talented longtime and more recent players, some professional and others hobbyists, who have made the change to a digital accordion which produces their orchestral sounds. “Many types of orchestras and bands have had their own identity,” says Maestro Falcetti, “From the symphony, woodwind and string orchestras, to the swing, marching and ethnic bands from different countries – each served a purpose in musical evolution. There has never been an orchestra that could do it all, until now.”

It is important for accordion enthusiasts throughout the world to hear how the acoustic accordion has expanded through digital technology, and also what the only United States Digital Accordion Orchestra has achieved both orchestrally and musically in the last 5 years. Close your eyes and you won’t believe you are hearing an accordion orchestra.

Testimonial from Ginny Hamblet, Entertainment Coordinator at First Night Chatham: “WOW! Let me repeat that… WOW!! Your Digital Accordion Orchestra was very well received at our New Year’s Eve Celebration of the arts at First Night Chatham. The audience could not believe the versatility of the pieces that your presented. We have heard nothing but rave review from those who attended. We hope you will perform for our event next year.”

For more information, please visit the Orchestra’s new Facebook page (New England Digital Accordion Orchestra). You can see the orchestra’s performance at First Night Chatham on YouTube by searching “New England Digital Accordion Orchestra – Chatham First Night” or by clicking this link: https://youtu.be/_pduLrYqyC4

Below is a list of songs performed in the YouTube video:

1. Celebration
2. Evergreen
3. Gonna Fly Now
4. New York, New York
5. James Bond Medley
6. Polka Medley
7. Your Mama Don’t Dance
8. Birth of the Blues
9. Star Wars Medley
10. Fiddler on the Roof Medley
11. Beatles Medley
12. Conflict (Civil War Songs)
13. Birdland
14. God Bless America

For any additional information, please contact:
Sam Falcetti at samfalcetti@gmail.com or 413-204-5522.

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

30th AAMS Festival March 6th & 7th in New Jersey

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
AAMS logo
Joan Sommers with AAMS AwardJoan Sommers Photo PosterThe 30th AAMS Festival was held on March 6th & 7th in Cherry Hill, NJ. It was a whirlwind of accordion music, workshops, meeting new and old friends, accordion orchestras, solos and more.

During the festival there were workshops and two festival orchestras which were directed by guest conductors Dee Langley and festival honoree Joan C. Sommers (picture left).

Joanna Arnold Darrow directed the Westmont Philharmonia Accordion Orchestra.

A report and pictures is online at: 2020AAMS

Picture below: AAA President Dr. Joseph A. Ciccone, Prof. Joan C. Sommers, AAMS Festival Director Joanna Arnold Darrow, ATG President Joe Natoli.
AAMS Festival 2020

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Frank Mucedola Accordion School Receives 2020 Best of Auburn Award

by Rob Howard
Frank MucedolaThe Frank Mucedola Accordion School in Auburn, NY has been selected for the 2020 Best of Auburn Award in the Music Instructor category by the Auburn Award Program.

Each year, the Auburn Award Program identifies companies that they believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and community. These exceptional companies help make the Auburn area a great place to live, work and play.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2020 Auburn Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Auburn Award Program and data provided by third parties.

Larry Malmberg eSheet music, sent by email, secure bank server

Yvonne Marts Donates Very Special Accordions to AWAM

by Dr. Helmi Harrington, Curator, A World of Accordions Museum, USA
AWAM Logo
AWAMAWAMAWAM board member Yvonne Marts (Fergus Falls, MN) phoned me in December of 2019 to says she wanted to donate her best accordions to the museum, knowing how much I appreciate the Hohner Imperator and Hohner Morino models. They are mid-twentieth century models, well treated and loved by this “Certified Accordion Technician” known as “The Accordion Lady of Fergus Falls.” They will join other accordions she has donated and will be displayed with pride."
As a model, the Hohner Imperator was built in Germany in 1936 and then again in 1957-61 according to Dr. Martin Haeffner’s Ewig Jung Trotz Vieler Falten [History Unfolds!]. Judging by construction materials and design, this Imperator IV (left, foreground), without serial number, was probably built in the early 1960s. Its treble section offers eleven treble shifts and one palm-master for the 41 keys in four reed-banks while the bass section offers five shifts in five reed-banks.

The Hohner Morino VM, offers eleven treble shifts and five bass shifts controlling five reed-banks in each section. Its treble features triple-middle reeds tuned tremolo and its bass has 127 buttons. The model was built from 1948 to 1970. This instrument, without mute, probably originated in 1940-60s. 

When I arrived at Yvonne’s home, I was surprised by additional donations from Marge Hansen, also of Fergus Falls. They are delightful instruments—Hohner “World’s Fair” Bohemian-type diatonic, Concertone two-row “Viennese” diatonic, Scholer Anglo concertina, and an unusual child’s toy. All are in excellent condition—like new. Fine additions to the museum collection!

Yvonne had notified the “Daily Journal” newspaper of her donations to AWAM and my expected arrival to pick them up. Reporter Johanna Armstrong printed a November 23, multi-page story about Yvonne’s life and accordion-related occupation.

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Mary Mancini & Mario Tacca Daily Videos

by Rita Barnea
Mary Mancini and Mario TaccaVideo: From CD “Ricordi”

As we all are experiencing difficult times in our lives with Covid-19, music remains one of the most powerful healers. Mary Mancini & Mario Tacca share their music in daily inspirational music videos. Internationally acclaimed vocal artist Mary Mancini has been featured in the New York Times, the Forth Worth Star-Telegram, and the Journal News and has performed in a variety of venues around the world. Able to sing in eight different languages, Mary draws from a deep repertory reservoir. She is adept at pop, show tunes, operatic arias, and sacred music and has received worldwide acclaim.

Accordionist Mario Tacca, on the Board of Directors of the AAA was a world champion, winning the World Cup of Italy, the Grand Prix of Paris, the US National Competition and the International Accordion competition held at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Mario Tacca dazzles audiences across the US and around the world with his outstanding virtuosity and his exciting interpretations of international music, the classics and pop.

Mary and Mario share, “We're very happy to be in touch with you to bring you our hymn for today.  All of you are in our thoughts and prayers each day as we lift all of us and those around you in prayer.  As you know, Italy has been suffering through this pandemic for weeks, starting before us, and it's still ongoing.

Also, as many of you know, we have been traveling to Italy to visit Mario's relatives for many years.  And some of you traveled with us when we took groups to the Amalfi Coast, Sicily and Tuscany.  What wonderful memories!

So today, we add a dedication to all the people of Italy who are suffering, those who have perished, doctors and medical workers, and to all of our family there who must work and those who are in quarantine.

The hymn we have chosen, "Va Pensiero", is the most famous of all Italian Renaissance Hymns.  In the Opera Nabucco, 1842, by Giuseppe Verdi, it is called "The Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves". This hymn was also proposed to be elected as the National Hymn.

This will come in a different format today - the soundtrack is from our CD, "Ricordi", along with a slideshow of some of our memorable photographs from Italy, which we hope you will enjoy.

May God continue to bless you and keep you well and safe.

 Peace and Blessings,

Mary & Mario

For further information: manciniandtacca@gmail.com

Brooklyn Accordion Club Future Events

by Rita Barnea
Brooklyn Accordion ClubMain Squeeze Accordion OrchestraThe BAC 2020 will open with the Main Squeeze Orchestra concert on April 26, 2020. Please mark your calendar for the upcoming meetings!
Each meeting will start with an open mic. If you are interested in performing, please email: Brooklynaccordionclub@gmail.com Beginners, non-professionals, and first timers are encouraged to perform!

Described as "the Hugh Hefner of the accordion world", the late Walter Kuhr created the orchestra in 2002 by recruiting the smart and funny ladies of the band from his best accordion students. The 9-to-18 piece ensemble has since played at many nightclubs, warehouse parties, art openings, festivals, and for special events ranging from bar mitzvahs to burlesque shows. The band's repertoire is fun and diverse, defying nerdy stereotypes of accordion music to include pop cover songs, retro cool movie themes, and classical pieces as well as Bavarian polkas, Argentine tango, and cabaret songs.

2020 performances include:

Sunday, April 26 4:00-6:00 Guest performer: Main Squeeze Orchestra (MSO) at Tiny Montgomery at Three’s Brewing in Gowanus

Sunday, May 17, 2:00-4:00 at Acme Hall Studios at 435 9th Street at 7th Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11215

Sunday, June 14 2:00-4:00 Guest performer: JP Jofre, Bandoneonist at Acme Hall Studios at 435 9th Street at 7th Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11215

Admission $5.00 per person

photo: Hai Zhang

Gary Dahl eSheet music, sent by email, secure bank server system

Accordionist Rob Reich Presents Online Concerts Every Friday

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Rob ReichSan Francisco based accordionist Rob Reich will be presenting livestream concerts from his living room every Friday night 8:30 to 9:PM PST. on his Facebook page. If you miss it (or you're not on Facebook), Rob will post all the videos on his website.

Rob is a graduate of Oberlin Conservatory with a degree in Composition. He is best known for his work with Tin Hat, Gaucho, and Circus Bella. Rob Reich has over 15 years experience providing unique, memorable music for events of all kinds: weddings, corporate parties, house concerts, backyard barbecues, etc. Rob can provide everything from solo piano or accordion, to small jazz combos, to large dance bands, and everything in between. Rob works closely with the musicians to ensure the music is of the highest quality. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area (but willing to travel).

For further information: rob@robreich.com
Cell: (510) 459-3996

Over 2,100 titles of eSheet music, sent to you by email, secure server bank online payment

Future events


The Ins and Outs of the Accordion by famous accordion repairer and tuner Thierry Benetoux

2020 AAA Master Class & Concert Series in New York City Presented by Dr. William Schimmel

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
2020 AAA Seminars
The American Accordionists' Association (AAA) will present a 2020 Master Class & Concert Series with Dr William Schimmel, moderator and curator from July 31st to August 2nd, 2020. This event will be held at the Tenri Cultural Institute in New York City.

Entitled "Time Travel" the festival will feature daily masterclasses from 3:PM and evening concerts from 7:PM.

Dr. William Schimmel, one of the principal architects in the resurgence of the accordion, holds Bachelor of Music, Master of Science, and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in composition from the Juilliard School. Schimmel's music has been featured in a number of television shows and films, perhaps most notably 'Scent of a Woman' starring Al Pacino, where Schimmel appears in the famous Tango scene. Schimmel performs music in many genres, has commissioned and premiered hundreds of new works, has written a number of books and articles and has made numerous recordings and videos. He has served and continues to serve as Artist in Residence of The American Accordionist's Association (AAA) where he also serves as Distinguished Lecturer in Residence and member of the Governing Board.

The Seminars were brought to the AAA by Dr. William Schimmel with the idea of presenting all facets of the accordion to The New York Artistic Community, with the notion of finding ways to find new angles of expression, composition, video art, performance, dance, design, trapeze, as well as new takes on old ideas and bringing the Accordion Ancestry into fresh new light.The response has been overwhelming in the establishment of an accordion culture in New York City and its influence has gone global.

Download the AAA Masterclass flier for a full list of participants and reservation information: 2020AAAMasterClass.pdf

For further information on Dr.Schimmel: Accordionbill@gmail.com

Online reservations at: http://www.ameraccord.com/annualmasterclass.php

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Leavenworth International Accordion Celebration Plans to go Ahead

by Christine Johnstone
2020 Leavenworth Festival
The Leavenworth International Accordion Celebration in Leavenworth, Washington plans to go ahead from June 18th to 21st, 2020, sponsored by the Northwest Accordion Society.

The event will include a competition, workshops, concerts, spontaneous jam sessions, a parade and much more. Competition judges are Kevin Soleki (USA) and Emmanuel Gasser (Canada).

There are three main venues for the festival:

The Festhalle - for the competition, concerts, and vendor displays in the foyer.

Grange Hall - the education center. It has two floors. The upper floor will have a performance space for all levels of performers; we will offer workshops, CD sales, sheet music sales, other vendor displays. The lower level will be used for workshops and free accordion lessons

Gazebo - a great place to perform outdoors for tourists and accordion friends. We have a sign-up sheet with 15 min. slots where accordionists may perform. In late afternoon on Friday and Saturday, the Gazebo Ensemble will perform.

On March 23rd, organisers announced that “the situation in the country and our local area has changed so much since the advent of COVID-19. There has been a lot of discussion on whether we will be able to have LIAC 2020. We are hoping for improvement in the situation but it is difficult to be optimistic.

We are holding-off on Advanced ticket sales, competition registration, and gazebo sign-up for 2-3 weeks. If we have to cancel LIAC 2020, we will reschedule it for June 17th to 20th, 2021 with as much of the same program as possible”.

For details email Chairperson Bonnie Birch: bonniebirch@msn.com

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

San Francisco Accordion Club Reschedules April Meeting

by Rita Barnea
Steve AlbiniThe April 26, 2020 meeting of the San Francisco Accordion Club has been CANCELLED! Their next meeting is May 17, 2020 at 2:PM. Open to the Public!

Out of concern for our members and performers, and due to the uncertainty regarding the "shelter in place" order as a result of the Corona virus (Covid-19) panedemic, the Executive Board of the San Francisco Accordion Club has decided to CANCEL the Club meeting scheduled for April 26, 2020.

On May 17, 2020 Steve Albini will perform. Steve is a multi-instrumentalist and singer. He has performed throughout the U.S. and Europe. His southern Italian roots are strongly reflected through his music. As a studio musician Steve is often called by producers and artists to add his touch to their projects. Steve's current project is IL SOLE which also features singer Tatiana Semichastnaya.

The San Francisco Accordion Club is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charitable organization whose purpose is to enhance, promote and stimulate an appreciation for the accordion within the membership and throughout the general public. Donations are tax-deductible and gratefully accepted

For further information: info@sfaccordionclub.com

Mailing Address:
The San Francisco Accordion Club
511 Virginia Avenue
San Mateo, CA
94402

Accordion Jazz Chords

2020 3rd Annual San Diego Accordion Camp Rescheduled to June 4-5

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Gordon KohlThe 3rd annual San Diego Accordion Camp, under the musical direction of Gordon Kohl has been postponed until June 4th to 6th, 2020 at the Mangia Italiano Restaurant in Chula Vista, California.

The camp emphasizes building accordion musicianship skills, enjoyment and self confidence in playing an accordion solo. Both acoustic and digital accordionists are welcome to attend. This camp is designed for accordionists playing at Palmer Hughes book level 3 to 7. Workshop topics will include solos/duets/trios, exercises, chord harmony, bellow expression, group play and improvisation on two lead chart tunes. The modern tango, “Oblivion,” will be included along with some of Gordon’s original compositions in today’s pop style.

Music selections will include:  
 
·         Celestial Fire-- a study in rhythm and bellowing
·         Klezmer Waltz
·         Polka ltaliano--a fun solo in 8ths and 16ths
·         You Are the One--a dance ballad and study in tempo and harmony
·         Venetian Minstrel--an Italian Mazurka
·         Beautiful Senorita--a Latin rhythm study
 
The registration form and logistics information is available at:  http://www.gordonkohlaccordions.com/

The $219 enrollment fee includes: music, exercises, notebook, study materials, daily parking fee, lunches on Thursday and Friday

For more information contact: Gordon Kohl Phone: (619) 395-0454

E-mail:  GordonKohl@GordonKohlAccordions.com

PANcordion

Cotati Accordion Festival August 22-23

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Cotati 202 Accordion Festival
Mark your calendar for the 30th Annual Cotati Accordion Festival on August 22nd and 23, 2020. The Cotati Accordion Festival is a two-day, multi-cultural,non-profit, multi-generational accordion extravaganza held in La Plaza Park in downtown Cotati. See 40+ bands on seven stages including the Jam Tent, Polka/Zydeco, two main stages, Accordion's Apocalypse Stage, Student Stage, and Friar Tuck's Pub.

LOCATION
La Plaza Park
60 West Cotati Avenue
Cotati, CA, 94931

For further information:
Linda Conner
Local: 707-664-0444
Email: info@cotatifest.com

Moire details in future USA news publications.

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

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James O'Brien eSheet music, emailed to you, secure bank server

Impact of Coronavirus on Stas Venglevski 5 Concerts - USA

by Dan Grauman
Video 1:

Video 2:

Video 3:

Video 1: Summer Sunshine composed by Stas Venglevski. Sheet music available online, catalog: vstas056
Video 2: Scarlatti Sonata in CM and Sonata in Cm
Video 3: Felice & Boudleaux Bryant

Musicians are among the hardest hit by the effects of the Corona virus. The cancellation of all forms of entertainment at venues ranging in size from large concert halls and opera houses to restaurants and bars results in a major loss of income. Add to that students canceling their in person lessons so all that remains is online lessons.

I recently booked five concerts in five days in the Washington, DC/Maryland/Virginia Metropolitan Area for renowned performer Stas Venglevski.

The day Stas arrived, the new guidelines were announced by the Government limiting gatherings in any one space to no more than 25 people and the cancellations started coming in one at a time.

By the third day, all five concerts were canceled. Flying home earlier was not an option, as the airlines were unwilling to bend the rules, in spite of the fact that many flights were less than half full.

I asked Stas about an impromptu house concert. He was fine with the idea, so I quickly put together an invitation and circulated it among a few neighbors, family members, and friends. Many said that they did not want to risk it, so we wound up with a small but very appreciative audience of four!

Stas played a beautiful concert with a nice variety of musical styles, including classical, gypsy jazz, Cajun, American country, Moldovan, and more, as well as several original compositions.

If you regulations allow and you have the opportunity to host a house concert, keeping in mind all the recommended precautions, you could be of great help to a musician during this difficult time.
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