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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Mar-2010
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Titano Accordion Company


BREAKING NEWS: Ron Lankford Passes Away - USA
Editor's Note
Accordion USA News Starts Online USA Fan Club
Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA
Grayson Masefield's U.S. Recital Tour Update
2010 National Accordion Convention – Electronically Designed
Mary Tokarski to Appear in Cabaret Show in NYC
Mid Atlantic Music Teachers Guild Presents Accordion Extravaganza 2010
Art Van Damme Tribute Wall - Cyberspace
April 18 Special Concert: Grayson Masefield Performs and Vivant Releases New CD!
Joseph Natoli Releases Vol 1 of His Adult Accordion Method
Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund Event on May 2, in NY
Dr. Robert Young McMahan Presents World Premiere of His New Composition

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

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

Composers Concordance: Schimmelfest, the Himmel’s Best
Joseph Natoli Presents Two Composition Workshops, March 12, 13, at NAA
Harry Angelo Gay – accordionist

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

Future events

Eddie Monteiro, Jazz Accordionist, to Perform at Shanghai Jazz in Madison, NJ.
World Accordion Day – World
Accordion O Rama event at NAA Convention, Texas
Debra Peters to Present Workshops at NAA in March
March events for Accordionist Guy Klucevsek
Petosa Accordions Presents the Return of the Giulietti Accordion
Galla-Rini Accordion Camp in California, July 25-30
AAA Sponsors Master Class and Concert Series in July 2010
Dominic Karcic and the Continental Sound Orchestra to Perform in April

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


Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

BREAKING NEWS: Ron Lankford Passes Away - USA

by Rita Barnea
Faithe and Ron Lankford - USA Roland Accordion Manager. Right is Joseph (USA contestant) and his wife Giovanna Natoli.Ron Lankford (the Roland V-Accordion Manager for the US) has passed away.

He found out 2 weeks ago that he had a kidney tumor.

After surgery, he returned home for a few day, but was readmitted on Tuesday and passed away today, Thursday (11th March 2010).

Picture above left: Faithe and Ron Lankford, Joseph and Giovanna Natoli at the 2008 Roland International Festival and Competition in Rome.

Further details of funeral arrangements and where to send messages of condolence will be posted shortly as soon as they are available.

Joseph Natoli wrote the following article:
I've had to take 24 hours to try to absorb the shock of finding out about Ron's passing yesterday. I had to come in a day early down to Dallas NAA convention to fill in for Ron for the first day Roland setup activities, since he was ill and could not come this year.

When I got this tragic news yesterday afternoon (after just sending him a get well card the day before), I was and will continue to be devastated for a long time to come. Ron touched so many lives in such a positive way....and there will never be a more passionate zealot for the accordion than Ron.

He never had an unkind word to say about anyone and always managed to find the positive in anyone. The fact that I feel such a closeness to Ron after being his friend less than two years is a testament to the wonderful person he was. He has certainly become one of the most influential people in my life.

When we (my wife and I) went to the 2008 Roland International Festival together with Ron and his wife Faith, we had such a great time together that we promised each other we would make the trip again together under less stressful conditions (outside the context of a competition).

That trip will never happen, and it certainly reminds one of how thin the line is between this world and the next. I guess that should be a lesson to all of us to enjoy life now, laugh often and love much. We certainly don't know what tomorrow brings, and if someone would have told me three weeks ago that we all would have lost this dear friend yesterday, I would never have believed it.

Last year, Ron was in the front row for the final concert here in Dallas, and he was the first one rising to his feet for standing ovations. He loved the instrument, he loved his place in life with Roland and the position it put him in to help the accordion rise to its rightful place with all the other instruments and instrumentalists.

Ron is sadly sadly missed here in Dallas this year, but I know in my heart that he will be in that same front row seat tomorrow night, and will be the first person rising to his feet to cheer us all on for the future of the instrument he loved some much.

Good bye buddy. Thanks so much for everything and for becoming such a special influence in my life.

My special condolences and prayers to Ron's family.


The service arrangements for Ron Lankford have been set:

Parkway Christian Center
229 N.E. Beacon Drive
Grants Pass, OR 97526
(541)-479-2639 (541)-479-2639

The service will be held at 4pm on Friday March 19th.

In lieu of flowers, the family would appreciate donations to be made in care of Ron Lankford to the:
Rogue Valley Medical Center Foundation
2600 Siskiyou Blvd. #100
Medford, OR 97504

For any of you who want to communicate with Ron's family, here is the home address:

4444 Rogue River Hwy.
Grants Pass, OR 97527

Ron is survived by his wife Faith, and 4 children (Elijah, Brockman, Brittany and Ronnie).

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Editor's Note

by Rita Barnea
Did you know that Accordion USA has just started an online USA Accordion Fan Club? Now you can contribute to and have your accordion news updated 24/7. Check out this new feature of the USA news. E mail, tell your friends about it. It is time to be online………..especially if you want to know everything that is going on in the accordion world. And…… can contribute YOUR news and ideas to it.

Please e mail me at with your thoughts, opinions, and news items.

In the March USA news, you will read about new, exciting accordion festivals that are happening now and during the next few months. If you have not been to one…………continue reading the March news and I am sure you will find one or more that you will want to attend.

We are soooooooo fortunate that 2009 Coupe Mondiale Champion, Grayson Masefield, will be here in the USA to present wonderful and memorable concerts. I can assure you it will be a concert you will never forget!

Please continue reading the news to find out about MORE fantastic accordion events taking place during the month of March!

Accordion Jazz Chords

Accordion USA News Starts Online USA Fan Club

by Rita Barnea
Fan Club logo
The Accordion USA News has started the USA Fan Club which is now online.

The USA Fan Club is being sponsored by who are offering one eSheet solo music (able to be sent to you by email) free of charge to all who join. You can select from any of the 1,400 plus eSheet solo titles online provided it costs less that US$12/Euro 9 at

To join our new USA Fan Club you only need to click: USA Fan Club and fill in your name and email address. There is no password or other sign-up questions or requirements. It is very simple and quick. The USA Fan Club will be used to inform you by email of important Breaking News (such as the recent death of Art Van Damme) so that you are immediately "in the know".

This is especially important since the Accordion USA News is a monthly news release and a lot can happen during one month. We will also inform you of new videos and recording tracks as they become available too.

If you have news items such as concerts, festivals, conventions, etc. to add during the month, please send the information to Rita Davidson, Accordion USA News Editor at or phone: 201-675-4861

Click USA Fan Club - Make sure you join today! Tell your friends about it!


Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA

by Heather Masefield, Secretary, New Zealand Accordion Association
Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival
Paul PasqualiNewsletter cover, Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion FestivalI am writing this on the plane flying internationally to Las Vegas for the Octoberfest Las Vegas International from 15th to 18th October at the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas.

Paul Betken & Jerry Cigler are newly added to a great line up of stars (list below) with lots of great seats still available! Want to hop a plane to come and enjoy this exciting festival?

Newsletter (picture right) with full information: 2018LVACnews.pdf
Picture left: Event organizer Paul Pasquali

The lineup starts with visionary accordionist Cory Pesaturo and bookends with a grand finale starring Grayson Masefield and the International Accordion Orchestra under the direction of the legendary Prof. Joan Sommers.

You can register online at or contact Paul Pasquali, event organizer, by phone at 1-800-472-1695 or (801) 485-5840, email:
Footer Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

Grayson Masefield's U.S. Recital Tour Update

by Faithe Deffner
Grayson Masefield at the 2009 Coupe Mondiale Prize PresentationThe young New Zealander who has recently burst forth as a musical phenomenon is a 22-year-old Kiwi, Grayson Masefield, who has established himself as a brilliant accordionist.

He will embark on a U.S. performance tour beginning with an April 11 appearance in the Boston area.

The handsome young musician has taken top titles for the astounding musical prowess he demonstrates with his instrument in serious classics as well as crossover music styles.

Masefield's accordion boasts the ability to bypass the conventional pre-set chords and offers the complete range of single bass notes enabling the artist to perform accurate renditions of any music style including classics.

At the most recent Coupe Mondiale (World Accordion Championships which take place in a different country annually, much the same as the World Olympics), Grayson Masefield took top honors as the foremost accordionist in both classical and entertainment categories. These outstanding performances followed his first place award at the Primus Ikaalinen International TV Competition in Finland and preceded his acclaimed appearance with an electronic accordion. (Video of this is on Grayson's Fan Club).

No other accordionist has taken such an array of titles by mastering this wide range of musical performance styles. Grayson began classical training at Auckland University with Stephanie Poole. His advanced study subsequently took place in France with renowned accordion educator Frédéric Deschamps. He has already given critically acclaimed performances in France, Spain, Germany, United Kingdom, Portugal, Slovakia, Italy, China, Lithuania, Monaco, New Zealand and Finland.

His musical heritage dates back to his maternal grandfather, Allan Jones of Auckland who is known as the “Father of Accordion” throughout Australasia, where he was a founding member of the New Zealand Accordion Association and the gentleman most responsible for bringing the 1980 World Accordion Championships, under the auspices of the Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA), to Auckland. The instrument's popularity was furthered by Grayson's uncles, Harley and Maurice Jones as well as his mother, Heather Masefield, the children of Allan Jones who all became performers and teachers of the accordion. On his paternal side, Grayson traces his lineage back to the Maoris, the natives of New Zealand. His dad too, studied accordion as a youngster.

The concert schedule begins April 11 in Newton, MA and is followed by appearances in Kansas City, MO, Chicago, IL, New York City, Connecticut, Westchester, NY,, Sykesville, MD,, Silver Springs, MD, and Westchester, NY. Concert details are available from the American Accordionists' Association (AAA),

Editor Rita Davidson:
Do not miss this special event, Grayson Masefield, in his USA concert tour! See the Grayson's Fan Club for video of his performance, the most recent receiving a standing ovation in Lithuania from an audience of music teachers and accordion students.

1. Sunday, April 11, 2010 -Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts (ATAM), Boston
2. Sunday, April 18, 2010- Unity on the Plaza, 707 W. 47th St., Kansas City, Missouri
For more information:
3. Sunday, April 25, 2010 - Connecticut Accordion Association, Connecticut
4. Tuesday, April 27, 2010- Mt.Vernon Senior Citizens Center at the Armory.
For further information: call Dr.Sal Febbraio 914-664-2455
5. Thursday April 29th, concert, Fairhaven Community Center, Sykesville, Maryland. Sponsored by Joan Grauman and Stella Allison, Private event.
6. Saturday, May 1, 2010 - Concert, Silver Spring, MD sponsored by Dan & Joan Grauman.For further information:
7. Sunday, May 2, 2010- Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Dinner, New York.
For further information:

To arrange additional concert dates, please contact concert organizer, Faithe Deffner via e-mail: or the AAA office at

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

2010 National Accordion Convention – Electronically Designed

by Dr. Norman Seaton
NAA LogoNorman Seaton, President of the National Accordion Association, announces that all the plans for the 2010 National Accordion Convention, which will be held in Dallas, Texas from March 11-14, 2010, have been finalized and the committee is ready for this convention. For the first time in history, the planning began by Norman using electronic services (Google Docs) to survey nearly 1400 accordionists from around the world. Once the information was collected, the summaries were forwarded to various committees who have booked presenters who agreed to meet most of the recommendations submitted by surveyed accordionists. Every scheduled event, including the workshops, has been modified to reflect information collected from the extensive survey. Greg Klugiewicz agreed to chair the convention committee.

As a result of the survey, the committee elected to schedule the Thursday Galla-Rini Appreciation Day to be directed by ATG-Board member Esther Lanting (Indiana). Since the virtual accordions have gained respect in the accordion community, Esther has invited virtual accordion owners to join the orchestras. An interesting concept emerged: Esther will also be directing a Roland sponsored Virtual-only accordion orchestra playing Galla-Rini’s arrangement of the Hallelujah Chorus.

Another development for 2010 is the new National Accordion Trade Show. Due to the popularity of the vendor area and the wide variety of vendors, it has been upgraded to become a Trade Show with demonstrations scheduled throughout the convention. The youth activities have also been expanded for 2010. For more information, visit the National Accordion Association web site ( and contact the Convention Chair, Greg Klugiewicz.

Titano Accordion Company

Mary Tokarski to Appear in Cabaret Show in NYC

by Rita Barnea
Mary TokarskiOn Saturday, March 6, 2010 accordionist Mary Tokarski will appear in "A Night on the Left Bank" a Cabaret Show with Megan Owen, vocals, and Richard Danley on piano at the Duplex Theater, 61 Christopher Street (at 7th Avenue), New York City. The program is from 4:30 PM- 5:30 PM. Phone 212-255-5438 or for tickets and information. There is a $15 Cover & a 2 drink minimum and $10 Cover for MAC & a 2 drink minimum.

THE DUPLEX, New York City's world famous cabaret and piano bar, is a 70 seat off-Broadway venue located in the heart of West Greenwich Village in Manhattan. The ever popular DUPLEX boasts a piano bar with open mike every night of the week, an upstairs bar and an intimate off-Broadway cabaret theatre, all hosted by New York's friendliest staff.

Performing both nationally and internationally as a soloist, with symphony orchestras, and in a duo known as “Buttons & Keys”( with Bulgarian pianist Dessie Vaughan), Mary has traveled to China to perform with the Mantovani Orchestra, to New Zealand with the Auckland Symphony, and to Arizona, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Texas, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Washington D.C., Tennessee, Minnesota, California and Nevada. As a workshop presenter, Mary is sought-out by numerous associations for presentations on all aspects of music, performance, and Master Classes.

In February of 2011, Mary will appear with the Hamden Symphony Orchestra in Hamden, Connecticut performing Gary Daverne’s “Rhapsody for Accordion and Orchestra”. The CD of this work and other Daverne works is available on the Gary Daverne site.

For 20 years Mary served as Director of Music Education at Tokarski Music Center in North Haven, Connecticut, where she taught piano and accordion, as well as conducted the choral & ensemble programs, and supervised the pre-school programs. Mary currently teaches piano and accordion at her home in Northford, Connecticut.

She also served for many years as a Music Educator in the North Haven Department of Education's Early Childhood Development Program at Green Acres Elementary School, is currently 2nd Vice President of the Accordionists & Teachers Guild, International (ATG) as well as on the Board of Directors with both The American Accordionists' Association (AAA) and the ATG which are the two national member organizations of the Confederation Internationale des Accordeonistes, (IMC-UNESCO).

For further information:

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

Mid Atlantic Music Teachers Guild Presents Accordion Extravaganza 2010

by Rita Barnea
Mary Tokarski, Daniel Desiderio, Eddie Monteiro, Joanna Arnold-Darrow, Beverly Roberts CurnowThe M.A.M.T.G. is presenting an accordion concert featuring the area’s best and most well known accordionists. This will take place on Saturday evening March 27th, at 7:PM in the Grand Ballroom of the Hilton Hotel, 3 Tower Center Boulevard, East Brunswick, NJ. Donation is $10.00. The concert is in conjunction with their annual Spring Festival and Competition. The Festival is a 3 day event that features competitions in all the major instruments and voice.

Among the featured accordionists will be: Mary Tokarski, Daniel Desiderio, Beverly Roberts Curnow, Eddie Monteiro, Joanna Arnold-Darrow, the DeBellis Accordion Orchestra and the Westmont Philharmonia Accordion Orchestra. Lenny Feldmann will be the Master of Ceremonies.

The Mid Atlantic Music Teachers Guild (MAMTG) is happy to welcome the officers and members of the AAMS. The American Accordion Musicological Society has been in the forefront of promoting the accordion as a serious musical instrument. The Mid Atlantic Music Teachers Guild (MAMTG) was founded by a group of professional music educators from the Tri-State area to establish and maintain high professional teaching and ethical standards, exchange music-related ideas, information and fellowship among colleagues, promote music education in our area, and to provide a platform for area music students to display their talents in a competitive environment. The Guild has been recognized as a viable musical organization throughout the entire Mid-Atlantic and New England States.

For further information:

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Art Van Damme Tribute Wall - Cyberspace

by Rita Barnea
Art Van DammeArt Van Damme died on February 15th 2010 after being ill with pneumonia for several weeks.

A Memorial to this great accordion jazz legend is now online and you can add your Tribute to his Tribute Wall on the Art Van Damme Memorials site.

Thank you for all the nice tributes sent so far. The Tributes Wall will be open for 7 more days to send tributes.

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

April 18 Special Concert: Grayson Masefield Performs and Vivant Releases New CD!

by Rita Barnea
L-R: Sarrah Cantrell, Janne Silfverberg, Julie Silfverberg,Dee Sligar, Karen Fremar, and Gail Overly
Vivant! will be in concert with Grayson Masefield, 2009 Accordion World Champion from New Zealand! This will be a fantastic concert at Unity on The Plaza at 3:00 PM, 707 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, Missouri.

Vivant! is made up of multi-talented musicians whose primary musical training centered around the accordion, in addition to various keyboard instruments and other acoustic and percussion instruments. The focus of the group is to share the unique versatility of the accordion and the various styles of music that are possible to produce with the instrument.

The accordionists in Vivant! all began studying the instrument at a young age. They are highly decorated musicians in both ensemble and solo performing. Most have toured professionally, and collectively they have concertized in most of the United States and in 28 countries throughout the world. Several of the musicians chose the accordion as their major area of emphasis in college and have continued to play professionally.

The sound of Vivant! combines the richness of the acoustic accordion with the electronic sounds of synthesizers, trombone, and various percussion instruments. Their style combines the art of virtuoso concert accordion with jazz, pop, Latin and tango. Vivant! explores original music written for the accordion, Baroque and other classical works suitable for the instrument, as well, as tango, jazz and other popular works. Above all, their music is exciting, captivating and alive!

Janne Silverberg: Janne has lived in the KC area his whole life. He played the accordion for a few years before switching to the trombone in the 4 th grade. Janne is currently a senior at the Music Conservatory at UMKC majoring in Trombone Performance. While trombone is his first love, Janne is a big fan of Mexican and Italian food, likes classic cars and Slurpees at 7 Eleven.

Gail Overly: Gail is originally from New Jersey, just outside of Manhattan and started playing the accordion when she was 7. Her husband, Bob, their 21 year old son, Brent, and the head of the household, Sandy (the dog), live in Lee's Summit MO. Gail earned bachelor and master degrees in Accounting from UMKC and is a Vice President of Finance for an international direct marketing company where she has responsibility for call centers and fulfillment operations in Kansas City, Austin, Philadelphia, Clearwater and Manila (Philippines). Vivant! is obviously her creative "outlet." She also enjoys running, cooking and gardening.

Karen Fremar: Karen was born into a musical family that operated a music studio in Fort Scott, Kansas, and began playing the accordion at age 2. She is the composer/arranger for Vivant! and remembers composing "giant music" on the piano when she was very little and had to stand and reach up to play the keyboard. Karen is a member of ASCAP and also holds a Performance degree from UMKC in Accordion, as well as Masters and Doctorate degrees in Composition and Music Theory from UMKC and the University of Kansas. She won the United States Accordion Championship and a World Accordion Entertainment Championship title in Sweden. Karen has toured internationally playing accordion with several music groups and also played accordion with Pavarotti on his World Farewell Tour. An accomplished composer, Karen has written numerous compositions including the test pieces for the Coupe Mondiale World Accordion Competition and most recently performed in New York City at Tavern on the Green premiering a piece commissioned by the American Accordion Association in honor of Faithe Deffner.

Julie Siflverberg: Julie grew up in Ft. Scott, Kansas. When Julie was 8, her mom came home one day and asked her if she would like to learn how to play the accordion. Julie said 'Sure!'..... a couple of years later, she added piano lessons. Margie Fremar was her teacher. Julie successfully participated in many music festivals. She was the Kansas Accordion Virtuoso Champion for three consecutive years. In 1980, Julie received her Bachelor of Music degree in Accordion at the University of Missouri - Kansas City, married Juha from Finland, and they lived in Helsinki for the next five years. They moved back to the States in 1985. Julie is a member of the accordion group, The International Trio (Julie, Juha, and Kevin Friedrich) that has toured in Finland, New Zealand, Estonia and the USA. Julie runs a very successful music studio in Overland Park, KS., where she teaches accordion and piano to students five years to adult. She was past president of both Federated Teachers of Fine Arts., Inc. and the Mid-America Music Association (M.A.M.A.)

Dee Sligar: Dee began studying the accordion at the UMKC Conservatory at the age of twelve. She continued studying accordion through college and now her music career is culminating with the Vivant! Adventure. Dee had the privilege of touring with a USO tour through Europe and the Azores, was a featured artist with the Young Audiences National Program, and played lots of gigs through the years. Dee is a passionate gardener, loves great food, wine, laughter and fun people...not necessarily in that order.
Sarrah Cantrell: Sarrah moved to the KC Area in 2002, from Dallas, Texas. She has been playing drumset and other general percussion instruments for eight years, and is now teaching elementary and middle school percussion lessons. She is a Sophomore at the UMKC Conservatory majoring in percussion performance.

During their individual careers, the members of Vivant! have toured and concertized as accordionists in most of the states in the continental USA and in the following countries, islands, and principalities:

Austria, Azores, Czech Republic, Denmark, Egypt, England, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Guam, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Japan, Liechtenstein, Midway Island, Monaco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Okinawa, Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Scotland, South Korea, Sweden, Switzerland, and Taiwan.

Tickets are: Adults $10.00; Students with ID $5.00; Children 12 and under Free.Tickets are available at the door.

For further information:

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Joseph Natoli Releases Vol 1 of His Adult Accordion Method

by Joseph Natoli, ATG President
Joseph NatoliThis music method is the result of years of trying to teach adults with existing published juvenile music methods. Understandably, juvenile methods take a very slow and rudimentary approach to teaching music because they try to allow enough time for very young students to absorb learning materials that can be very foreign to their young and developing minds. Also, to promote faster learning to the very young, these methods will often use juvenile pictures and illustrations in an attempt to get this information more readily digested by the young mind. Although older students and adults do not typically admit it, as a teacher, I often see the awkwardness and embarrassment of having to carry these juvenile method books to and from lessons and/or showing family and friends their progress because of the child-like illustrations contained within the books. This is especially unfortunate, because nothing spawns learning more than sharing one’s knowledge and newly learned skills with family and friends.

Over the years, as I tried to apply these juvenile methods to teaching older students and adults, those method books often failed me because older age groups tend to get bored if the material is not moving quickly enough. Adults often learn at a much faster pace because they have experienced so much more of life and understand the complexities of language and conceptual learning that are typically not well-developed in very young students. Therefore, I set out to create a music method that moves at a pace that is quicker yet much more comfortable for older students and adults.

My new Adult Accordion Method also comes with a 63-track CD that includes each and every exercise and musical selection in the book. Although it is always wise to find a good teacher to assist and expedite a student’s learning process, this method is written with the self-learner in mind as well. Therefore if a student is in a remote area where access to accordion teachers is not readily available, a student can use the method book and its accompanying CD as an effective self-teaching tool. Both are designed to give the self-taught as well as the instructed student the ability to make as much progress as possible. If a student is fortunate enough to have found a teacher, then think of the accompanying CD as a way to take the teacher home to help practice the other six days of the week!

[Joe would like to remind remote students however about his article that appeared in AccordionUSA a few months ago concerning remote teaching via the internet. Joe has been teaching students very successfully in all over the US and in Europe via the internet and it is working out wonderfully. Therefore any remote students who may want to consider this option are welcome to contact Joe at]

Another important but often overlooked feature of the Adult Accordion Method is that it is bound with plastic comb binding. This subtle feature means that the book will effortlessly remain open on the music stand without the student having to perform gymnastics to do so. The center staple bound music books that have been the norm for years in the music publishing industry require way too much effort, bending, and babysitting. All of JANPress music is produced with comb binding because its publications are written BY musicians FOR musicians who all understand the frustration that center staple bound music creates when trying to keep it open on the music stand.

After years of teaching the accordion on all levels, I hope that this new Adult Accordion Method will close gaps in the existing literature for the adult accordion student. The Adult Accordion Method has already been test marketed and sold in various venues, but the official “unveiling” will be at the National Accordion Association (NAA) event in Dallas this year in mid March. Volume 1 will be succeeded by two more volumes which will complete the series. Volume 2 is anticipated for production by August 2010.

Titano Accordion Company

Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund Event on May 2, in NY

by Rita Barnea
AAA Logo
Magnanini Winery, Walkill, NYThe American Accordionists' Association (AAA) proudly presents the 8th Annual afternoon of music, food and fun at the winery to benefit the Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund for the advancement of promising young accordionists!

Please join us on Sunday, May 2, 2010 from 12 noon until 5 PM at the Magnanini Farm Winery, 172 Strawbridge Road, Walkill, New York. Telephone: 845-895-2767

The program organised by the American Accordionists' Association (AAA) features traditional “Valtaro” music and performances by guest artists:
Mario Tacca, Frank Toscano, Frank Carozza, Domini Carcic, Ray Oreggia, Mary Mancini, International Vocal Artist, the Busso Trio, Emilio Magnotta, Anita and Bob Siarkowski, Berverly Roberts and Robert Young McMahon, and the Connecticut Accordion Orchestra.

There will be a special performance by the 2009 Coupe Mondiale winner, New Zealand virtuoso Grayson Masefield. Do not miss this event!! See the Grayson's Fan Club for video of his performance, the most recent receiving a standing ovation in Lithuania.

For further information and to purchase tickets please contact event organizer: Dr.Joseph Ciccone at
Phone number: 914-238-0041
Please RSVP on or before April 15, 2010

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Dr. Robert Young McMahan Presents World Premiere of His New Composition

by Rita Barnea
Dr. Robert Young McMahanOn Thursday, March 25, 2010, the World premiere of “Three Toss-offs, for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, and Accordion” (2010) composed by Dr. Robert Young McMahan will be given. Participating musicians are: Rachel Smith, flute, David Schneider, oboe, George Balog, clarinet, Dennis MacMullen, bassoon, and McMahan, accordion. The concert will take place at 8:PM at The College of New Jersey Composition Faculty Concert, Mildred and Ernest E. Mayo Concert Hall, Music Building, The College of New Jersey, 2000 Pennington Road, Ewing, NJ 08628.

Admission is free and no reservations are necessary. In addition, Dr. McMahan will give the premiere performance of “Toccata and Fugue, for Accordion (2009)”, by Moshe Budmor.

Dr. Robert Young McMahan will also accompany a chorus in a few Irish numbers in a VOICES Chorale concert entitled "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling", in Pennington, New Jersey,Friday evening, March 5, and Sunday afternoon, March 7, at Wrightstown, PA.

Dr. McMahan is Professor of Music at The College of New Jersey where he is also Area Coordinator of Music Theory, Composition, Ear Training, and Classical Accordion. His degrees are: D.M.A., Music Composition, Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University;M.A., Liberal Arts, Great Books Program, St. John’s College; M.M., Music Composition, Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University;B.M., Music Theory, Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University.

Prior to his appointment at TCNJ, Dr. McMahan taught Music Theory and related subjects at Towson University, Morgan State University, College of Notre Dame, Essex Community College, and the Peabody Preparatory School (of the Peabody Institute) where he was Head of the Theory Department and developed its curriculum. He also taught Classical Accordion at the Peabody Preparatory School and at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Dr. McMahan studied composition with Robert Hall Lewis, Jean Eichelberger Ivey, and Stefan Grove at the Peabody Institute. He received honors in composition there and awards in composition from the Annapolis Fine Arts Composers’ Competition and Contemporary Recording Society. In addition, he has received a number of Meet the Composer grants since 1996.

Dr. McMahan is a recognized authority on the American composer, Carl Ruggles, and has published articles in American Music, Sonneck Society Bulletin, New Grove Dictionary of Opera, and New Grove Dictionary of Music. He is presently working on a book on the life and works of Ruggles.

Dr. McMahan’s primary instrument is classical accordion, and he has tirelessly promoted the instrument in serious contemporary music throughout his career. He has been commissioned to write works for the accordion by various individuals and organizations, including the American Accordionists’ Association and the New York State Council on the Arts. He has recorded on the CRS and Orion labels and is published by Ernest Deffner Music. During his years in the Baltimore area, Dr. McMahan was accordionist for the Baltimore Symphony, Baltimore Chamber Orchestra, Washington Ballet and American Ballet Orchestras (at the Kennedy Center), and for other cultural and performing organizations. He has performed under such notable conductors as Julius Rudel, Rob Fisher, Sarah Caldwell, Sergiu Comissiona, Gunther Schuller, Frederik Prausnitz, Murry Sidlin, bandleader Les Elgart, Leon Botstein, Leon Fleisher, and Peter Schickele, and with Sting, Georgia Brown, Maureen McGovern, Alvin Epstein, Boyd Gaines, and Theodore Bikel. Besides his numerous published articles, Dr. McMahan has been featured in articles by others in Keyboard Magazine, The Music Connoisseur, High Fidelity, Who’s Who in American Composers: Classical, and several other highly regarded publications.

Dr. McMahan serves as a reader and table leader at the annual examinations readings of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Program for Music Theory and had been a reader for the Graduate Record Examination in Music Theory prior to its discontinuance. He is also on the Executive Board of the American Accordionists’ Association where he serves as Secretary.

For further information:

Jon Hammond CD's for Sale

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

Composers Concordance: Schimmelfest, the Himmel’s Best

by Dr. Joseph Pehrson
Joseph Pehrson, Willliam Schimmel, Patrick Hardish. Photography by Jill Steinberg
William Schimmel. Photography by Jill SteinbergThe Composers Concordance is a presenting organization for contemporary music, primarily living Americans, which has been around 26 years, starting in 1984. Founded by composer/librarian Patrick Hardish and composer/pianist Joseph Pehrson, they have worked with William Schimmel for many years.

Schimmel was a teacher at the Juilliard School in 1969 when he first met Patrick Hardish. Patrick started showing Bill his compositions when he was in one of Bill’s Juilliard classes. As a result, Patrick became Bill Schimmel’s very first composition student and Bill was Patrick’s first composition mentor! Friendship and colleagueship followed, continuing to this day.

William Schimmel has played eleven pieces on Composers Concordance concerts over the years! Three pieces were by other composers: Patrick Hardish’s Accordioclusterville, May 14, 1986, Alexander Shchetynsky’s Sonata, March 19, 1999, and Luciano Berio’s Sequenza #13, November 11, 2005. The rest were his own original pieces:

Bill Schimmel performed his Suicide in C Minor for soprano and accordion on one of our very first concerts, April 24, 1984. Both Bill and the audience members lived to tell about this! The work was presented at the Sulzberger Parlor of Barnard College with Betty Faber, soprano and Bill at the accordion. He was also with us at one of our more prestigious early concerts May 3, 1985 at Weill Recital Hall with his Terminal Hotel. Bill performed this piece on accordion, adding his distinctive vocalizations.

But, the “Schimmelfest” was to continue with Space Requiem from May 14, 1986 at NYU’s Loewe Theatre, one of the locations we used for many years through the largess of NYU professor Dinu Ghezzo. Bill again vocalized, played and scampered.

November 20, 1987 brought one of Bill’s most distinctive performances to Composers Concordance at the St. Ignatius Church when he wore a toy truck on his head like a hat and did a memorial to American composer Roy Harris, a former part-time truck driver, in his Symphony #3 Roy Harris. This was a very moving performance as Bill marched down the aisle of the church, truck on head, performing.

December 3, 1992 brought William Schimmel’s accordion thesis Wagner IS Debussy to our concert at the larger hall of the Greenwich House . Many audience members were thoroughly convinced by this interpretation and theory. However, adding even more excitement, November 20, 1998 brought a larger-scale Schimmel piece, The Dolls to our concert at Christ & St. Stephen’s Church. For this presentation, Bill brought his wife Micki Goodman, singer/choreographer, and Kathleen Goodman singer/actress. This theatre work brought tears to the eyes of many in the audience.

To add a bit to the international music trend, November 19, 2004 brought Bill Schimmel’s Capriccio Brasilia to the Composers Concordance at Christ & St. Stephen’s church. For this work, Bill brought in Alyssa Lamb for vocals and melodica, adding to his own mighty playing and singing.

And finally, for the Composers Concordance very most recent concert at the Club Drom, January 31, 2010, all composers were asked to perform in their own pieces for a concert entitled “Composers Play Composers.” Bill performed his life-interpreting work, with a theme of “what ‘s it all about”: The Wheel of Becoming. With this wheel we have come “full circle” in a wonderful collaboration with the extraordinary Dr. Schimmel that we hope will continue as long as the Composers Concordance, Bill and the accordion inhale and exhale their distinctive breaths.

Photography by Jill Steinberg:
The top photo is Joseph Pehrson, Willliam Schimmel, Patrick Hardish.
The second photo is of William Schimmel.

For further information: Dr. Joseph Pehrson, Founding Director, Composers Concordance
Phone: 212-564-4899

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

Joseph Natoli Presents Two Composition Workshops, March 12, 13, at NAA

by Joseph Natoli, ATG President
Joseph NatoliJoseph Natoli will present two unique workshops at the NAA in Dallas, March 10-14.The first workshop called “Workshop #1- Compose Yourself” is a workshop for those who either like to dabble in composition or who are serious about it. This first Composition 101 workshop will teach you a quick but thorough perspective on how to get started -- where to find software tools, internet links, notation software, and even composition lessons all available online. Some examples of compositional approaches will be reviewed, and you will all get a free piece of music to analyze as part of learning compositional technique. Some focus on how to use the Roland V-Accordion will be reviewed in relation to satisfying that creative compositional “itch” that so many of us have. Building on what is learned in this workshop, for those who want to participate and who plan on attending the next composition workshop, they will be encouraged to come up with a little musical phrase or cell that can be incorporated into the selection that will be composed interactively with the group.

The second workshop is “Learning to Compose – Virtually” which will focus more on the actual creation of a composition, especially with the tools available on the Roland V-Accordion. Hopefully we can encourage those who are interested, to participate with some compositional phrases or little motifs that we can construct into a final composition in this session. The style of the selection will be democratically chosen from input within the group, but will have to be something tangible enough for composition output within 50 minutes. With any luck we will have something enjoyable that can be committed to music notation software by the end of the session. However, if there is not enough time to accomplish this in its entirety, Joe will take what was developed by the end of the workshop and craft it into a composition that will be sent to all participants who request it. The output will be sent via PDF to anyone who wants to leave their e-mail address to receive the results.

Joseph Natoli, 1972 AAA US Virtuoso champion, 1972 Coupe Mondiale 1st Runner Up, 2008 Roland US Digital Accordion champion, and active Roland clinician has found a way to teach students anywhere in the world who want to study with him, using this available technology. Since current laptop and desktop computers typically come equipped with a web cam and microphone, and since most people currently have high-speed internet access, Joe has been successfully using a free online video conferencing tool to teach students anywhere on the planet via web cam.

For further information:

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Harry Angelo Gay – accordionist

by Dominic Karcic
Harry GayOn October 29th, 2009 the accordion world lost a great advocate, Harry Angelo Gay. Born on February 15th, 1936 in Washington D.C and eventually moving to Stockton, CA at the age of nine. Harry’s love for the accordion was only superseded by his love for his beautiful family.

His father, Angelo Elia Gay (Gai), was born in Nepi, Italy and mother, Ambrosina Lazzari Gay, who was born in Giubiasco, Switzerland. His parents came to the USA in the years 1925 and 1927 respectively.

At the age of 10, Harry started studying accordion with John Pisacco of Stockton, CA. By the age of fourteen Harry became a member of the local musicians union and started playing jobs as a soloist, with a trio, a quartet and eventually with a six piece ethnic Italian band. At the age of 18, Harry put down the accordion.

Harry graduated from Stockton High School in 1952, Stockton College in 1956 and the University of California Dental School in San Francisco, CA in 1960. Moving back to Stockton he started his dental practice and remained an active practitioner there for over forty-one years. Throughout his career Stockton remained his home where he and his wife, Vivian, raised their family.

Harry was a man of many talents and interests. After twenty-two years Harry picked up the accordion again, vowing to play it for fun, but determined to pick up where he had left off - practicing four hours every evening. He was an avid outdoorsman, impeccable musician, and anything Harry did he did to perfection. He was an important member and contributor to many clubs: including the Good Time Accordion Club (which has created a Scholarship Fund in Harry’s name), Accordion Club of the Redwoods, Golden State Accordion Club, San Francisco Accordion Club, Silicon Valley Accordion Society, California Dental Society, San Joaquin Dental Society, and Ducks Unlimited. Harry touched many people in many ways with his knowledge, wisdom, and continuous generosity.

He was contributor to numerous CDs including: Steve Balich Sr. Polka Band “Plays All Italian,” Don Garibaldi Band “Bella Bruna, Bella Italia,” “Don Garibaldi’s Favorites,” and also a CD by Harry Plady. He was an ardent fan of Valtaro Musette music as were also his parents and he played the style extremely well.

He was avid attendee at many accordion events, including the Las Vegas Accordion Convention and the Cotati Accordion Festival. He enjoyed visiting and jamming with his fellow accordion friends and acquaintances. Harry’s favorite song was “Iupali Iupala” and many of the accordion clubs have been playing this song in his honor.

He was always there to lend a helping hand to a fellow accordionist or accordion club. Harry was not only an impeccable player but was always willing to share his knowledge with fellow accordionists - amateur and professional alike. He is remembered for his generosity in sharing his musical knowledge, as well as his vast library of music. Fellow friends, musicians and even strangers would look to Harry for help in finding music.

Harry will be greatly missed and remembered for his unending kindness, caring, sense of humor, words of wisdom and encouragement, very generous heart and unconditional love.

He is survived by his childhood sweetheart and loving wife of fifty-three years Vivian Gay; daughter Kim Girardi, son David Gai, son-in-law and best friend Rick Girardi, Daughter-in-law Kelli Gai, and six Grandchildren: Matthew, Amanda, and Gregory Girardi; Mitchell, Heather, and Brittani Gai; his dear sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Joan and Primo Castagno, nephew Michael Castagno, niece Yvonne Solari (Joey), and great nieces Marissa and Audrianna Solari.

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

Future events

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

Eddie Monteiro, Jazz Accordionist, to Perform at Shanghai Jazz in Madison, NJ.

by Rita Barnea
Eddie MonteiroWorld renowned accordion jazz virtuoso, Eddie Monteiro, will appear with his trio at Shanghai Jazz in Madison, NJ on Thursday, March 4th, from 7-9:30 PM. If you attend, you are in for a unique and very entertaining evening.

Eddie is an AAA Board Member and an outstanding music teacher in New Jersey, who incorporates the use of the accordion in his daily teaching activities. Eddie is also a featured Roland accordion demonstrator and is a judge at the USA Roland Competition in LA each year.

Shanghai Jazz opened in October 1995 and has been named "One of the Top 100 Jazz Clubs in the World." The restaurant has earned rave reviews for their food, service and ambience from the New York Times, Star Ledger, Zagat Survey and Inside New Jersey.

Their philosophy is warm hospitality, gourmet Asian cuisine inspired by the seasons, a well-focused wine list and a full bar with almost a dozen beers on tap, including our own micro-brew Shanghai Jazz Ale. And of course exceptional value. World class artists showcase their talents 6 nights a week with no music charge except for special events.

Owners Martha Chang and David Niu returned to Martha's hometown of Madison, New Jersey after traveling, working and studying in Asia with the aid of a Fulbright fellowship. Inspired by Shanghai in the 1920s and 30s, when it was known as the "Paris of the Orient," they have sought to create a jazz club infused with "Jazz and Joy."

Shanghai Jazz is located at 24 Main Street,Madison, NJ. The phone number is 973-822-2899
For further information:

World Accordion Day – World

by Raymond Bodell
World Accordion Day logoWhat are you plans for World Accordion Day on the 6th May?

Join us on May 6th (the day the accordion was patented in 1829). We invite you to join our international tribute to the accordion by holding an accordion event in honor of World Accordion Day on or close to May 6th.

A key part of this event is the World Accordion Day website. Everyone can register their World Accordion Day activity on the website and send a report of their event after, for that website. This site is already a very valuable resource for the media reporting World Accordion Day so please let your local media know about your event and this website.

No event is too big or too small. ALL accordion events celebrating World Accordion Day are welcome. This is a promotion for the accordion in which every accordion enthusiast can participate and help bring our accordion world together as well as strongly promote the accordion to your population.

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

Accordion O Rama event at NAA Convention, Texas

by Holda Paoletti-Kampl
Accordion-O-Rama Accordion Sales and Service, the accordion superstore, in conjunction with Excelsior Accordions, the Italian accordion manufacturer, will present Jeff Lisenby playing an Excelsior MIDI accordion at the National Accordion Association (NAA) Accordion Convention in Dallas, Texas, March 11th to 13th. Jeff will combine real accordion sounds with up-to-date electronic voices and electronic rhythms creating the effect of an amazing trio.

Peter Shearer, of Accordion-O-Rama, will be available in the Accordion-O-Rama booth during National Accordion Association (NAA) convention-show hours to discuss specific accordions. Jeff Lisenby will be present to demonstrate and play acoustic as well as MIDI accordions.

There will be a special presentation in the Accordion-O-Rama Accordion Sales and Service booth on the ‘Basics of MIDI’ on Friday March 12th, at 5pm.

Jeff Lisenby and Peter Shearer will present a virtual ‘Orchestra via MIDI and a real Excelsior accordion’ on Saturday March 13th at 11am in Ballroom no1.

Jeff is a headliner at the NAA show. Jeff’s ‘Jazz Accordion’ workshop will be at 1pm on Friday. His workshop on ‘Working in Studios’ will be held on Friday March 12th at 3pm.

Jeff will also be entertaining on Saturday evening following the banquet.

For further information email:

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Debra Peters to Present Workshops at NAA in March

by Rita Barnea
Debra PetersDebra Peters will present two workshops at the March National Accordion Association Convention in Dallas, Texas. Her first workshop on March 11 is called:” Blues and Roots -Play Tunes Without Having to Read any Black Dots (Sheet Music)”: It's a wonderful skill to read sheet music but it's also rewarding fun to play along with recordings of songs when no sheet music is available. Please bring your accordion(any type) to this class. Let's play along with songs from the CDs of the rootsiest blues accordionists, Clifton Chenier and Joel Sonnier; with piano players such as Professor Longhair and Ray Charles; or with one of the many blues harpists such as Little Walter or Jimmy Reed. Follow the blues guitar licks of Albert King and Clarence Gatemouth Brown, etc.

The second workshop on March 12 is called: “Stradella Bass Beyond Oom-Pa-Pa”: Just in case you have not researched it for yourself, the USA does not have a Federal Law that says "Oom-pa-pa is required." Debra will take the accordion bass to a new level showing that there are beautiful ways to play the accordion left hand that sound refreshingly hipper than the stereotypical chord patterns most accordion players use.

Debra will also perform on the Friday Party night event. Debra Peters and the Texas Folk Life group are extending an invitation to all the youth who have sent audition tapes to the Texas Folk Life contest to come to the National Accordion Association convention as honored guests.

For further information:

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

March events for Accordionist Guy Klucevsek

by Rita Barnea
Guy KlucevsekGuy Klucevsek will have a busy musical March. On March 18 and 19, he will record at the SONY Studios in Los Angeles with John Williams and his orchestra for Steven Spielberg's new film, “The Adventures of Tin-Tin”. The recording for this film actually began with two dates in October 2009, followed by these March dates, with still more to come in April. The Tin-Tin character was the creation of Belgian write and illustrator Hergé. The Tin-Tin comic strip ran for more than fifty years.

On March 18 at 8 PM, Guy will present a solo concert of original works at the Royal T, 8910 Washington Blvd., Culver City, CA. Telephone number: 310-559-6300. This will be Guy's first solo concert in Los Angeles in more than twenty years.

Guy Klucevsek is a versatile composer/accordionist who has worked with Laurie Anderson, Bang On a Can, Anthony Braxton, Anthony Coleman, Amy Denio, Bill Frisell, Fred Frith, David Garland, Robin Holcomb, Wayne Horvitz, Phillip Johnston, the Kronos Quartet, Natalie Merchant, Pauline Oliveros, Present Music, Bobby Previte, Relâche and John Zorn. He was a member of the Dave Douglas band, Charms of the Night Sky, from it’s inception, and recorded three albums with the group. As a soloist, he has premiered pieces by Aaron Jay Kernis, John Zorn, Mary Ellen Childs, Jerome Kitzke, Lois V Vierk, Stephen Montague, Somei Satoh, William Duckworth, and accordion concerti by Henry Cowell (Concerto Brevis) and Julia Wolfe (True Love).

His projects include:
• Solo performances: Spoleto Festival/USA, Ten Days on the Island Festival (Tasmania), Adelaide Festival, Berlin Jazz Festival, Vienna International Accordion Festival, Cotati Accordion Festival, Serious Fun! at Lincoln Center, Bang on a Can, and the children’s television show “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.”
• Polka From the Fringe, which was presented on the 1988 Next Wave Festival at BAM and has toured around the world; the two volume recording of it was named "Best Recording of 1992" by John Schaefer on New Sounds;
• Accordion Tribe, an international group which Klucevsek formed in 1996. They are the subject of Stefan Schwietert's documentary film, "Accordion Tribe: Music Travels," which has had a theatrical release in Europe, and has played around the world on television and film festivals, winning several awards as best documentary;
• Duo with Alan Bern (of Brave Old World): two accordions, piano, melodica, midi keyboard; their latest recording, "Notefalls," was released on Winter & Winter in 2007.
• 20+ recordings as soloist/leader on Winter & Winter, Intuition, Tzadik, Starkland, Review, XI, CRI,
• He can also be heard on John Williams’s orchestral scores for the Steven Spielberg films, “The Terminal,” "Munich," and the end credits for "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull."

For more information:
Telephone: 718-981-8394

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Petosa Accordions Presents the Return of the Giulietti Accordion

by Rita Barnea
Petosa accordions will continue the Giulietti tradition of fine Italian crafted accordions and will offer several models, most notable the Classic 127. The Giulietti accordion corporation was founded in New York in 1923 by Luigi Giulietti. He had learned his trade with Soprani accordion factory in Italy, immigrated to the USA in 1914 and co-founded Italo-American. In 1919 he traveled to New York, working for Galizi accordions Co.

When Luigi died in 1950, his son Julio Giulietti (1910) took over. He moved the accordion production to Italy by the Seranelli factory, Nylux most recent and notable by Zero Sette Factory.

Giulietti Corporation was active until at least 1984, by which time it was located in Westfield, Massachusetts. Julio died in 1996.

The Giulietti accordion will be on display from March 12th – 14th at the NAA convention in Dallas, TX.
For further information:

Galla-Rini Accordion Camp in California, July 25-30

by Rita Barnea
Maestro Anthony Galla-RiniThe 21st annual Galla-Rini Accordion camp will be held at the San Domenica Music Conservatory on the beautiful campus of San Domenico Music School, a stunning setting in rural San Anselmo, Marin County, California.

Last year at the 2009 Camp, the facility and food were excellent, the concert was well attended and the music was wonderful, especially the featured “Scandinavian Suite” which Joe Smiell composed for the 2009 camp. For 2010, he is writing a “Hungarian Suite “as the featured selection.

Please come, participate, and enjoy the music created by Maestro Joe Smiell, who in 2005, at the personal request of maestro Galla-Rini was asked to continue the camp and expand the program of presenting the accordion as a serious musical instrument.

For more information and to reserve a place please contact: Tor Arild
Phone: 650-851-7831

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

AAA Sponsors Master Class and Concert Series in July 2010

by Dr. William Schimmel
AAA Master Class with Dr.William SchimmelDr. William Schimmel is the moderator/curator of the 2010 Seminars sponsored by the AAA on July 30, 31 and August 1 – 2010 at The Tenri Cultural Institute of New York, 43A West 13th St. between 5th and 6th Aves. The Master Classes take place at 3 PM. The Concerts are at 7 PM. The fee is $20 per Master Class , $25 per Concert, or $40 per day – includes Master Class and Concert. $110 for entire weekend.

Accordionly to Dr. William Schimmel: Vincent Persichetti was one of the first composers asked by the AAA to compose an accordion piece on commission – He declined stating: DON’T LIKE OPERA!

Dr.Schimmel says: "Walked into a restaurant in Turin, Italy – in the back room was a party – complete with glitter cat masks and a drunken painter named Molinari sketching the event. I walked over to a sparkling red accordion and played the Drinking Song from La Traviata – everyone joined in on cue. I left shortly afterwards. I went back the next night – I could not find the restaurant – Yes, I’m pretty sure it happened."

"Took a late night walk one evening in Williamsburg. I forget which Williamsburg – Virginia or Brooklyn?! As I approached a dark street I could see an old Rollo-plane ride staring at me. It was shut down for the night. It was some sort of block party, carnival or amusement park. In the distance I could see a shadowed figure strutting back and forth. Somehow, I wasn’t afraid. As I approached, He said he was a MUMMER. He was wearing an accordion but there was no sound. It’s my costume, he said – my accordion, that is. He fanned it out and in – expanding and contracting."

With the accordion, there’s no need for words, lyrics or voices for that matter. All one needs is Franz Von Suppe and an audience of one – YOU!

And now, the highlights of the weekend:
What better way to show the accordion’s Built in Ironic (in your face) Duality than with a performance of “Jesus G. Faust” and “Tango Mephisto” featuring King of Ragtime, Dr. Mark Birnbaum. Dr. Robert Young McMahan will take us through the history of the accordion concerto, which in reality, are more like mini-operas. He will also premiere his new yearly 12 tone work, composed for the occasion. the occasion. “Watchman/Newsman” is a short opera by Yours Truly - about a vicious murder and even more hideous punishment by beheading, hanging, gassing, electrocution, injection, cremation and urination of the ashes.Jimmy Breslin interviewed a gravedigger at the funeral of John F. Kennedy. Aside from the obvious Hamlet reference, the gravedigger is a perfect metaphor for the accordionist – gigging while digging. A new work entitled “Brezlin”, tells the story.

“La Traviaida” – an attempt to combine the two Verdi classics and to get to the essence in about 10 minutes. The accordion is the perfect force for compression of time, space and visual/sound drama. We’ll also do “Carmen” in about 4 – all of it. We’ll also do “L’odour d’espirt”, a fifty second reality on a Kurt Cobain masterpiece.

Seems like dark stuff: Anything light? Actually yes – and some of it funny. Paul Stein’s Political Satire stings, bites and at times even burns – and always laugh out loud funny. “The Tunnel of Light and Love”, a new interactive video work by the eminent choreographer,director and video artist Micki Goodman will explore the notion of nature, love and rebirth in a pastoral visual elegy – not operatic, but certainly dramatic and life affirming.“St. Mathew the Mummer” – St. Mathew’s Passion retold in a Mardi-Gras Style – in strutting upbeat tempos. Jazz Accordion great Will Holshouser will pull you in with his non-dramatic subtlety and elegance.“Opera Josephine” – a short opera about Josephine Baker through the eyes of The Pointer Sisters – devised from a segment of “Within the Context of No Context” by George W.S. Trow. Lee Mc Clure’s digital flute will dramatize any accordion moment. “Beyond Words” – a reality on Haydn and Gubaidulina, taking the notion of “Seven Words” to new heights – dedicated to the mummer, Joseph A. Ferko, who died seconds after accepting an award for 50 years of mummer service. His Seven Last Words were: “I hope to march fifty more years.”

Humorist, Ken Laufer, making us see and “Stars, Stripes, Scars and Scrapes Forever”. “Taking Stock – A series of Realities on Stockhausen” – including“Telemix”, which includes a rap on “Surfer Bird” by the “Trashmen”. A Visual and Sound installation: “Juilliard 1960’s to Early 70’s” showing present day realities and recreations on this famous school’s most Avant Garde period- through the eyes of an accordionist who was there to experience it: CIRCLES become SQUARES, NONO becomes YES/YES, ECLAT becomes ÉCLAIR, PITHOPRAKTA becomes PITHOKRAPTA and PATIENCE becomes LACK OF IT.

Concert Virtuoso Mary Tokarski – knowing the difference between Monteverdi and Montovani. “Missa Tantra” – showing the sensual side of the liturgical dimension. Godfrey Nelson and Lorraine Nelson Wolf – new age at its highest peak. Actress Kathleen Tipton charming us with penetrating words and gestures.
“Moritat Von Mackey Messian” – uniting Brecht, Weill and Bobby Darin as Mystics. Benjamin Ickies, the punk accordionist in your face – famous, infamous and just a dot.

“Sho West” – a work for (Japanese) sho, accordion and violin, uniting “Gagaku” with the great western violin concertos as well as Hillbilly ramblings – with Mr. and Ms. Fukui on Sho and Violin. Rock Artist John Foti – a jersey shore vibe – more Springsteen than Sopranos.“Expenses” – a work about life, death and taxes. Performance Artist Brian Dewan – the funniest person alive – and the nicest. “Kage/Urotrasho/Pera” - one big, long, continuous melody, a nonopera, uniting whitetrash and eurotrash cultures. Drone Artist David First plays a drone – an opera emerges.
“A First Avenue Opera”: An Opera designed just for you – with you playing the leading role - by simply walking – with or without an accordion. Sing Arias if you wish – make some up. Create your own walking tempos – speed up, slow down – the ultimate fitness experience. Find your personal Holy Grail. Post Bop artist Art Bailey performing quint – converter jazz in a new and exciting way. A.A.A. commissioned works to be announced. Cristina Speligene, solving design issues through the accordion. Marni Rice, Chansons/ edge/ grace. Doug and Diane Makofka – accordion/violin/ Von Knorr/Persichetti/ Shostakovich/beyond. Carl Riehl – the Riehl deal – when it comes to Glass and Satie. Ingrid Kvale – from Norway/ a singular sight and sound. Dr. Rocco Jerry – specializing in quintets – every part himself. Michael Century – a minimalist with heart and soul. Maverick Pianist Gary Klein, a rogue years before Palin. Martina Li – from China/maximalist/likes everything. Dr. Ronald Sarno – a writer/ bent toward Heaven, Hell, Purgatory and Limbo. Dave Soldier/ composer/ fights the good fight to the end. Famous Argentine pianist, Dr. Hugo Goldenzweig – Todo Tango/Brahms/ Chopin/Ginastera/Lanza and WS. Dramatic direction for entire weekend - Micki Goodman

For reservations: 212-876-0827 or or Those wishing to “take the hot seat” should reserve early.

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Dominic Karcic and the Continental Sound Orchestra to Perform in April

by Rita Barnea
Dominic KarcicThe Valtarese Foundation, Inc. is having its annual dinner-dance on Sunday, April 11th, 2010, 1 PM, at Maestro Caterers, 1703 Bronxdale Avenue, Bronx, NY. The contact person for the event is John Zaccarini, 914-337-9172.

The Foundation is a non-profit organization that over the years has raised thousands of dollars for the senior home in Borgo Val di Taro in Parma, Italy doing wonderful things through their generous donations.

This organization is also a great advocate for the accordion and accordion music. AAA Board member, accordionist, Dominic Karcic and the Continental Sound Orchestra will supply the music for the event as they have been doing for many years. Accordionists Ray Oreggia and Mario Tacca are also on the program.

The Valtarese Foundation, Inc. was formed in 1991 by Italian-Americans whose roots lie in the Val di Taro, the Valley of the Taro River, located in the province of Parma in the Emilia-Romagna Region.

The Foundation wants to help the people of the Val di Taro. It raises money to pay for medical equipment for the hospital, provides resources for centers for the elderly and donates to various volunteer associations within the region. Donations are also made to several worthy organizations in the U.S.

Please come out, support a great cause and have a wonderful Sunday afternoon. For further information: Dominic Karcic,
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