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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Mar-2012
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Titano Accordion Company

Highlights

BREAKING NEWS: With great sadness we are reporting the loss of Frank Marocco
Editor's Note
AAMS and MAMTG Honor Daniel Desiderio on March 31st
Kevin Friedrich to Perform at Dargaville Museum in NZ
Academy Award "Best Original Score" won by Accordionist!
Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of NAA March 14-17th
AAMS Presents Accordion Concerts and Workshop Weekend
"The Big Squeeze" in Illinois on April 6th
Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts Honors Charter Members
Cory Pesaturo: Invited to be Guest Artist for the Irish Accordion Association and more!
Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Dinner on April 22

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

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

Frank Marocco Accordion Event (FMAE): An Amazing Time in Mesa, Arizona
Walter Kasprzyk Performs with the Charlotte County Symphony Orchestra
The Amazing Accordion Kings Perform on March 4th
LIAA Now Features Guest Artists
American Accordionists' Association 18th Master Class and Concert Series
The Accordionaires Orchestra Performs on March 11th
Anthony Galla-Rini:Legacies, Repetiteurs and Accordion Symphonies
Judy Starr Performs Oboe Concerto with Accordion Orchestra at FMAE
Bill Schimmel in Concerts

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

Future events

Arizona Accordion Club Activities
Accordion Heroes Festival: June 20-23 in Virginia
AAA Festival in Baltimore from July 11-15th
ATG Festival: July 25-29th in Lisle (Chicago), Illinois
Bayanist Stas Venglevski with Mischa Litvin on Domra
Fred Ziwich to Teach Workshop: THE POLKA - CLEVELAND STYLE


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

Highlights


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

BREAKING NEWS: With great sadness we are reporting the loss of Frank Marocco

by Rita Barnea
Frank Marocco died yesterday evening 3rd March in Los Angeles at the age of 81.Frank Marocco was born in Joliet, Illinois USA on January 2, 1931 and grew up in Waukegan, a Chicago suburb. He studied classical Accordion for 9 years in The Chicago area. Frank Marocco began to learn the accordion at the age of seven when his parents enrolled him in a six week trail program.

His first teacher was George Stefano who greatly inspired him. He studied with him for nine years. Frank was trained in the classics but was encouraged to explore other areas. He learned clarinet, Piano, Harmony & Theory. Frank began his professional career playing in clubs and hotels all over America with a trio which he organized at age 18.

Frank won first place in a national music contest and performed with the Chicago Pops Orchestra at Chicago's Soldier's Field. He then formed a trio touring the Midwestern states and met his future wife, Anne in Indiana. They decided to live in the Los Angeles area where they raised their three daughters.

He became one of the most recorded Accordionists in the world. He is well known for his recordings of film music with a long list of composers; John Williams, Quincy Jones, Elmer Bernstein, Michele Le Grand, Henry Mancini and dozens of others. Frank Marocco has also played with some of the best Jazz Musicians in America and Europe; Ray Brown, Jeff Hamilton, Zoot Sims, Joe Pass, Joey Baron, Herb Ellis, Ray Pizzi, Ivor Malherbe, Massimo Tagliata, Conti Candoli, Philippe Cornaz, John Pattatucchi, Mats Vinding, Mogens Baekgaard Andersen, Marcel Papaux, Angela Hagenbach, Ron Feuer, Richard Galliano, Peter Erskine, Klaus Paier, Renzo Ruggieri, Pete Christlieb, Larry Koonse, Simone Zanchini, Andy Simpkins, Bob Shepard, Frank Rossolino, Jim Hall, Abraham Laboriel, Dan Higgin, Grant Geissman, Luis Conte and Stix Hooper just to name a few. His passion was Jazz and he played to huge audiences all over the world.

Marocco was a modest person, even when celebrated throughout the musical world. He was generous with his time and talent. Frank said,“Although I've made a comfortable living, my primary goal has never been to make a lot of money. It has been to be the best I could possibly be. This takes integrity, hard work, and dedication. You must have respect for what you do.”

We will continue to forever learn from Frank. He touched so many lives in such positive ways. Frank Marocco will be missed by all.

Condolences may be sent to:
Anne Marocco
7063 Whitaker Avenue
Van Nuys, CAL 91406, USA.
There will be a private cremation and no funeral service.

The Memorial Service for Frank Marocco will be held on Saturday, 24 March 2012 at 11:00am at the Northridge United Methodist Church, 9650 Reseda Blvd.Northridge, CA 91324, USA.

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Editor's Note

by Rita Barnea
Editor Rita DavidsonCan you believe that an Academy Award winning composer plays the accordion?

You can't? Think again! Read the story in the March USA News!

Accordion players are brought up on the circle of fifths which is one of the basics of music theory. It may seem to be a mystery to some, but to an accordion player it is as easy to understand as a C Bass! Very helpful to composers!

Check out this month's articles. It is close to the time when you will want to plan your spring and summer vacations…….. An Accordion Festival, of course!

In the coming months, we will include even more festivals so you can arrange your perfect summer vacation….. accordionly!!

PANcordion

AAMS and MAMTG Honor Daniel Desiderio on March 31st

by Rita Barnea
Poster
On Saturday evening, March 31st, 2012 at 6 PM, the American Accordion Musicological Society, in conjunction with the Mid Atlantic Music Teachers Guild, will honor intentionally known accordionist, Daniel Desiderio, with a testimonial concert and dinner at the Hanover Marriott in Whippany, NJ.

The concert program will feature the Westmont Philharmonia Accordion Orchestra under the direction of Stanley Darrow, Virtuoso Mary Tokarski, World Champion Beverly Roberts Curnow, 2011 MAMTG Champion Albert Manginelli, and the Accordion Pops Orchestra under the direction of Al Terzo. Commentator and Master of Ceromonies for the evening will be artist and entertainer, AAA Board member, Lenny Feldmann.

Daniel J. Desiderio, teacher, conductor, composer, arranger, and recording artist has performed in concert halls throughout Europe and America including London's Royal Festival Hall, Copenhagen's Radio House, Munich's Congress Hall, New York's Carnegie Hall and Town Hall, Philadelphia's Academy of Music and Kimmel Center, and the White House. A former board member of the American Accordionists' Association and founder of the Pennsylvania Accordion Teachers Association, Mr. Desiderio continues to perform in concerts and private affairs in the Philadelphia area.

For more information: mamtg@hotmail.com
or 856-854-6628

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

Kevin Friedrich to Perform at Dargaville Museum in NZ

by Rita Barnea
Former President of the Confédération International des Accordéonistes (CIA), Kevin Friedrich will perform with NZ accordionists Lionel Reekie and Maurice Jones at the Dargaville, NZ Museum on Sunday, March 25th. Kevin is also a Board Member of the AAA and ATG and former Editor of the USA News.

Kevin Friedrich is curating a display at the Dargaville Museum to celebrate 40 years of the NZAA. This display, originally intended to be in June 2011, was postponed to hold a display unable to return to a Christchurch Museum. The NZAA is sponsoring a bus to the opening of the event, which also includes a concert at the Lighthouse. These concerts are always popular events. Bus, $35, Ticket to concert $20, Total for Day Trip $55.

This is also the 50th Birthday year for Kevin who will receive a Lifetime Achievement Presentation from the NZZA.

The name of the display, 'Wakefield to Masefield' came from an excerpt from The History of the Accordion in New Zealand by Wallace Liggett. A reference does exist in the journal of Edward Jerningham Wakefield, one of the earliest English colonists, and his entry from the 24th of September 1839 contains an amusing reference to his use of an accordion:

"One named Te Kaera diverted us much by....bringing a long pointed spear within inches of our bodies: then retreating with a roar of laughter every time he saw us shrink from the thrust............I repaid him his surprise the first day that he came on board. I had got an accordion under a large cloak, and kept time to its notes with my mouth, so as to deceive him and twenty other natives into the idea that I was uttering the various sounds."

This is the first documented playing of an accordion in New Zealand and the Museum Display takes its name from the Wakefield performance to Grayson Masefield winning the Coupe Mondiale World Championship in New Zealand in 2009.

For more information: Kevinfriedrich@hotmail.com
Wakefield to Masefield Display

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

Academy Award "Best Original Score" won by Accordionist!

by Rita Barnea
Composer Ludovic BourceFrench composer, Ludovic Bource, was awarded the 2012 Academy Award for the Best Original Score for the movie, "The Artist".This was his first time nominated for an Academy Award. He also was the recipient of the Best Original Score for a Motion Picture at the 69th Annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beerly Hilton in Beverly HIlls, CA on Sunday, January 15, 2012. Bource has already won a European Film Award and a BAFTA (the British Academy of Film and Television Arts). He was also named Breakout Composer of the Year in 2011 by the International Film Music Critic Association (IFMCA).

Bource, 41, grew up in Brittany and from the age of eight played accordion at local dances and weddings. His first time in the spotlight happened when he played the accordion on stage at a Bastille Day Ball in his native Brittany. At the age of 17, he switched to the piano and studied classical piano at the conservatoire with Anne Magadur and at 18 he began to study jazz.

He has previously worked with Hazanavicius on the director's OSS 117 spy adventures, with "The Artist's" Dujardin as the secret agent Hubert Bonisseur de La Bath. He has recently produced an album for his friend, French saxophonist Pierrick Pedron.

For "The Artist", Bource took ideas from many styles of music including, surprisingly, Brahms's ""Sapphic Ode" for a theme called "Comme une rosee de largess" (Like a Dew of Tears), used to suggest George's melancholy, a "sort of sensitivity and dignity".

The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack Recording was made by the Flanders Philharmonic Orchestra in Brussels with all the resources needed to create powerful effects: 80 musicians, including 50 string players, 4 French horns, 4 trombones, 5 percussionists and a harpist. However, the variety of the soundtrack extends beyond the symphonic mode, as the tap dance scenes are played to lively big band music.

Charnwood Music Publishing, UK's Leading Publishing House

Celebrate the 25th Anniversary of NAA March 14-17th

by Rita Barnea
NAA Artists
2012 is the 25th Anniversary of the National Accordion Association (NAA) Convention. The celebration of the 2012 National Accordion Convention, held at the Westin Park Central Hotel in Dallas, Texas from March 14 - 17 is planned by the National Accordion Convention Planning Team consisting of Nick Ballarini, Greg Klugiewicz, Sharon and Norman Seaton, Louise and Bill Kucera, Judy Dillard, Chett Warzusen, Nancy Bernstein, and Tom Faulkner.

Featured accordionists will be Murl Sanders, SqueezeBox "Molly B and Ted", Betty Jo Simon, and Tatiana Semichasnaya. Newly added to the line up is well known accordionist, Cory Pesaturo.

The 2012 NAA Festival will also host activities for young accordionists. The National Accordion Association (NAA) youth program is designed for individuals 19 years of age and younger. Because of normal school schedules, Saturday, March 17, will be the official 2012 youth day. Due to generous donations by various members, the youth are invited to attend convention workshops, concerts, and related activities without paying an entrance fee. As you register for the 2012 convention, you may consider contributing to this special program.

Activities planned for young accordionists are: Youth Accordion Band under the direction of Richard Albreski. Please contact him directly, juaccord@hotmail.com for more info. Arlyn Visentin organized performance on the lobby stage, Dr. Daniel Kott directs Folk Dance activities,

Shelia Lee will manage the Hohner Accordion Trade Show area. She is setting up the show area to simulate her Pasadena Accordion Studio. Both youth and adults are encouraged to stop by and to take beginner lessons on either the button or piano accordion. On Saturday, Shelia will be in the Hohner Trade Show area letting anyone interested play an accordion (piano, button, or chromatic). If you bring your own a button accordion with the bass reeds removed, bring those reeds and Shelia will put the reeds back in (free) and teach you how to play a button accordion while using the bass buttons.

Interesting workshops will be offered by the following presenters: Murl Sanders "Versatile Accordionist Workshop" and "Instant Zydeco"; Betty Jo Simon "Commercializing Your Musical Talents"; Jamie Maschler "Tango, Comping, and Articulations"; Hank Thunander "Ethnic Styles of Polkas" , Nick Ballarini, Hank, Norman Seaton " Polka vs. Jazz"; Paul Betkin "Music Law 101"s; Roland Artists Tatiana Semichasnaya and Chris Gorton " How to Use A Roland"; Additional presenters are Nick Bratkovich " Macedonian Folk Dance Workshop"; Gordon Kohl "Polka Pointers"; Mario Pedone "Composing on your Computer": Dr. Ian Blair Fries "Medical School 101 for Accordionists"; Jessica Faltot "Business Relationships"; Gerald Cigler/Paul Betkin, Nick Ballarini "Bass Workshop"; Daniel Kott, Debra Peters "Swingin' Blues Accordion Band and Arlyn Visentin "Your Fifteen Minutes of Fame".

For further information: NatlAccordion@sbcglobal.net or
GKlugie@Verizon.net

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

AAMS Presents Accordion Concerts and Workshop Weekend

by Rita Barnea
Daniel DesiderioThe American Accordion Musicological Society will present three days of exciting workshops for accordionists and enthusiasts. The highlight of the weekend will feature a banquet and concert in honor of Daniel Desiderio, 2012 Honoree of the AAMS.

Workshops on Friday evening and all day Saturday include the following presenters and topics:
FRIDAY – MARCH 30, 2012
Suzy & Sam Andrews:“Accompanying a Singer—A DUET?”; Rik Kaplan:“Melodeon Treatment in the Music of Southwest Louisiana”; Bernie Gardzallo: “The “Alexander Technique for Accordion”
SATURDAY – MARCH 31, 2012
VENDOR DISPLAY ROOM OPEN all day; Kenny Iatarola & Linda Burns: “Killer Arranging for Accordion; Dean Ratzin &Bob Lijana:“Guido Deiro—The Other Brother”; Alex Chudolij:“The 3 R’s of MIDI Accordions” Roland, Reedless & Regular; Bruce Gassmann: “Hey Mr. Bassman; Yes YOU with the Accordion”!!; Rocco Jerry & Marina Jerry (cello): "Contemporary Classical Works for Accordion"; Mary Tokarski:“Performance Jitters”—How to Practice to Eliminate Them; Bernie Gardzallo“Transcription Palooza”Performing &Transcribing Music for Accordion; Joan Grauman: “Playing Ethnic Music Authentically”

6:00 PM Daniel J. Desiderio Honoree Banquet with music by Dr. Lou Persic
8:00 PM ACCORDION EXTRAVAGANZA CONCERT
Featuring The Accordion Pops Orchestra conducted by Al Terzo, The Westmont Philharmonia Accordion Orchestra conducted by Stanley Darrow, the Westmont Accordion Club conducted by Joanna Darrow, plus featured soloists: Beverly Curnow, Mary Tokarski, Lenny Feldmann and Albert Manginelli.

SUNDAY – APRIL 1, 2012
VENDOR DISPLAY ROOM OPEN; Frank Hodnicki & Lou Persic: "Make the most of those Bellows+Accordion Standards"; Guenadiy Lazarov:“Tender Loving Care for the Love of your Life”; Lenn Feldmann:“To Stroll or Not to Stroll” That is the Question; Jim Vandelly: “Similarities & Differences in construction of and music for Bayans & Accordions”; Dr. Robert McMahan: “The Accordion in Opera”; Stanley & Joanna Darrow: "Make the Most of Your Practice Time"

Please bring your accordion if you wish. Some workshops will include attendee participation. For reservation and tickets: Joanna Darrow 856-854-6628

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

"The Big Squeeze" in Illinois on April 6th

by Rita Barnea
The Big Squeeze
On April 6, 2012 at 7:30 PM, The Big Squeeze takes place at Northwestern University's Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive, in Evanston, Illinois. The concert will feature accordionists including Julien Labro performing jazz with alto saxophonist Jon Irabagon, and tango (on bandoneón) supported by the Spektral String Quartet (featuring Aurelien Fort Pederzoli and J. Austin Wulliman, violin; Doyle Ambrust, viola; Russell Rolen, cello); Jimmy Keane of Chicago performing Celtic music with support from guitarist Dennis Cahill; and Alexander Sevastian performing classical music. Dwayne Dopsie and the Zydeco Hellraisers featuring Shelton Sonnier, guitar; Dion Pierre, bass; Kevin Minor, drums; Paul Lafleur, washboard will close out the evening with a bang.

This one-time-only gathering of celebrated accordion and bandoneón virtuosi from around the world will dazzle you with classical, Celtic, jazz, tango, South American, and zydeco mastery. Tickets are $16 for the general public and $10 for students.

A free Accordion Demonstration and Lecture will also be offered on Friday, April 6 at 4:30 PM at Regenstein Recital Hall. Master accordionists featuring Julien Labro (jazz and South American), Alexander Sevastian (classical), Jimmy Keane (Celtic), and Dwayne Dopsie (zydeco) guide the audience through a variety of genres in this demonstration and lecture. The 202-seat Regenstein Recital Hall is located directly south of Pick-Staiger in the Arts Circle. The main entrance is the southern door on the west side of the building. Wheelchair accessible seats are available in the uppermost row of the auditorium. Free parking is available after 4 p.m. on weekdays, as well as all day on weekends, in the parking garage just south of the hall.  

For further information: ckretzer@northwestern.edu or
phone: 847.467.4000

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts Honors Charter Members

by Rita Barnea
Strolling Strings with Frank Busso, Jr.Michael Falcetti, President of the ATAM, and the current members are proud to honor eight charter members at the 2012 New England Music Festival sponsored by the Accordion Teachers Association of Mass. The Gala Awards Ceremony will be held on Saturday, April 14, 2012 at the Boston Newton Marriott. Performing in concert, at this prestigious affair, will be the Air Force Strolling Strings with accordionist Technical Sergeant Frank Busso, Jr.

Those being honored are Ida DeRossi from Fairhaven, Ma.; Sam and Peggy Falcetti from Wilbraham, Ma.; Tulio Gasparini from Lincoln, R.I.; Frank Gaviani, Jr. from Braintree, Ma.; Rosita Lee Latulippe from Hudson, N.H.; Leonard Ludovico from Warwick, R.I.; and Paul Monte from Wellesley Hills, Ma.

The New England Music Festivals three day event, April 13, 14, 15, 2012 , marks not only the 50th Anniversary of the ATAM but also their 35th year at the Boston Newton
Marriott. This year, the association will award three $500.00 scholarships for those students selected who are seniors and will be majoring in music in college. There have been over 400,000 entries in the past 50 years and close to $300,000.00 in cash awards, scholarships and trophies awarded. Workshops will take place on Saturday afternoon in the Lexington room and reunion bands will perform in the Ballroom on Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

Featured performers, the United States Air Force Strings is comprised of 22 world-class musicians. Each of these outstanding performers has studied and perfected their craft at leading colleges, universities and music conservatories around the world. Their studies prepared them to excel during an intensive and competitive audition process, which led to their selection for membership in The United States Air Force Band. A performance by The United States Air Force Strings reflects a combination of immense collective musical experience with the boundless dedication to perfection.

The New England Music Festival is an annual musical competition sponsored by the Accordion Teachers Association of Mass. (ATAM). Established in 1962, it typically features more than 1800 entries and 800 contestants from all across New England. All events are free and open to the public. During the festival, contestants, ages through 22, take part in accordion, guitar, bass guitar, drum, percussion, piano, and voice competitions. Solo, duet and group categories are also offered. Non Competitive Categories include evaluation solos and festival group divisions. Contestants must be students of ATAM teachers.

The three-day event takes place Friday through Sunday with a “Battle of the Bands” held in the hotel ballroom and cash awards given to the first, second and third place winners in three divisions. The Accordion, Guitar, Drum, and Piano Championships are also held Friday evening with cash awards given to all competitors.

On Friday, Saturday and Sunday, continuous group competitions are held in the hotel ballroom. Solo and duet competitions are ongoing. An awards banquet is held on Saturday evening with more than 500 in attendance. A $500.00 cash scholarship is awarded to a contestant accepted as a Music Major in college. Contestants are evaluated by judges from all over the country. At the event, students will have an opportunity to participate in workshops, compete in age-level categories, perform for evaluation, attend concerts, and have fun at a Dance Party on Saturday evening. One of the best things about the event is that contestants can participate regardless of their experience level or ability.

In addition to the new Super Championship Accordion category, sponsored by Dr. Emilian Badea, which has a $1000.00 cash award for the 1st place winner, over $4000.00 will be awarded in scholarships and cash awards in group and advanced categories. The New England Accordion Super Championship is open to all previous New England Accordion Champions and any Champions from outside the New England area ( excluding Coupe Mondiale winners).

All first place Champion winners over the last fifty years are invited back to this prestigious event and will be honored at the Gala Awards Ceremony. Many of the members are planning to participate in reunion bands performing in the Festival Band category to be held on Saturday and Sunday afternoon.

If you decide to attend, rooms will be available at a discount rate. The cutoff dates for these rooms is March 29, 2012. Reservations can be made on the ATAM website {www.atamnemusicfestival.com}.More information will be posted as it is available.

Roger Latulippe and Peggy Falcetti are Contest Co-Chairpersons. For further information, please email the 50th Anniversary Committee Chairman, Sam Falcetti: peggyf1944@gmail.com or call 413-204-5522.

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Cory Pesaturo: Invited to be Guest Artist for the Irish Accordion Association and more!

by Rita Barnea
Cory PesaturoThe Irish Accordion Association (IAA) Secretary Yvonne Chilton invites accordionists and supporters from all countries to come to their international competition for soloists, ensembles and orchestras of all ages, standards and genres.

The Irish Accordion Association is holding the Irish Open Accordion Festival 2012, incorporating the annual All Ireland Accordion Festival,on March 31st and April 1st 2012 in the Newgrange Hotel, Navan, Co. Meath (about 40km north of Dublin).

The special guest artist is Cory Pesaturo, winner of the 2009 CIA Coupe Mondiale Digital Accordion category and the 2011 Primus Ikaalinen Festival in Finland. This will be an exciting event featuring traditional Irish music, dancing and entertainment. You will be sure of a warm Irish welcome and leave with some great memories.

For further information email Yvonne Chilton: chilton_accordion@hotmail.com

Accordionist Cory Pesaturo continues to delight audiences wherever he goes. The Alabama Association has been very fortunate to bring in icons such as Friedrich Lips, Stas Venglevski, Peter Soave, and most recently, the 2009 Digital Accordion World Champion,Cory Pesaturo. Concert attendee,Craig Funerberg, said, "Cory"’s personable nature coupled with his incredible musical talent entertained the audience for over an hour. Cory would take multiple requests from the audience and combined uncommon musical themes while seamlessly flowing from one piece to the next all on the spot. It was amazing to watch as Cory selected sounds and played the songs.

On February 17th, 2012 Cory Pesaturo appeared at Cyrano’s Café in Saint Louis, Missouri.The audiences greatly appreciated his improvisations. A TV interview was arranged for him. Kevin Durth said, "I am a professional musician with over 40 years experience and had the privilege of producing the show. Cory was in town to do a Master class at Webster University. On Friday night he performed two shows that knocked the audiences dead! His virtuosity on the digital accordion was incredible". Cory has received an invitation to perform at St.Louis's premiere Jazz Club, The Jazz Bistro.

Cory was also soloist with the 25 piece Ashville North Carolina University Jazz Big Band on February 19th, enthusiastically received by the students and audiences.

It has been confirmed that Cory Pesaturo will present a Concert and Workshop at the NAA Festival, March 14-17, in Dallas. For further information: CoryPesaturo@corypesaturo.com

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Dinner on April 22

by Rita Barnea
AAA Logo
Carmen CarrozzaThe American Accordionists' Association proudly presents the 10th Annual Afternoon of Music, Food and Fun to benefit the Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund for the advancement of promising young accordionists on Sunday, April 22, 2012.

The event will be held at a new spectacular location with a diverse menu and unlimited free wine at Villa Barone Hilltop Manor, 466 Rt.6, Mahopac, New York. Phone number for the restaurant is 845-628-6600.

Featured performers include: Mary Tokarski, Dominic Karcic, Mario Tacca and Mary Mancini, Frank Toscano, Frank Carozza, Emilio Magnotta, Beverly Roberts Curnow, Ray Oreggia, Fabio & Fabio, Lenny Feldmann, Anita & Bob Siarkowski, the Connecticut Accordion Orchestra and more to be announced in future articles.

It is important for musicians to know the contributions that Carmen Carrozza made toward the advancement and acceptance of the accordion. Carmen Carrozza was born in a small town Solano in Calabria, Italy on July 20, 1921. Carrozza emigrated to the USA with his family when he was nine years old settling in the town of Chappaqua in Westchester, NY, where Carrozza began studying music, becoming proficient on the violin, piano and accordion.

It wasn’t long before his love for the accordion became obvious and he found himself concentrating solely on mastering this instrument and master it he did! Although the piano accordion was developed around the turn of the century in 1909, it was stated by one of Carrozza’s early professors that "the accordion wasn’t given birth until the young Carrozza placed his hands on the instrument."

In 1937, he graduated from the Pietro Deiro Accordion Conservatory in Greenwich Village, NYC where he was awarded the highest honors and a gold medal for his performance. He furthered his studies at the New York Academy of Music specializing in theory, harmony, counterpoint and composition. Carrozza’s professional debut took place in 1947 at the Philadelphia Academy of Music launching what was to be one of the greatest careers of the century. He went on to triumph with appearances throughout the concert halls in the United States. (Carnegie Hall, Town Hall, Times Hall, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center Music Hall, Philadelphia Academy of Music, just to name a few) Canada, and Europe - (France, Germany, England, Sweden, Finland, Russia and Italy). Carrozza was presented with a gold medal by the E.A.L., an agency of the Italian Government, after an outstanding performance at the Theatro di Pavia.

Carrozza was the first accordionist invited to perform as featured soloist with major symphony orchestras: The Boston Pops Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Arthur Fiedler premiering Paul Creston’s "Concerto for Accordion and Orchestra"; National Symphony and New York Philharmonic under the direction of Andre Kostelznetz, premiering Alan Hovanhess’ "Rubaiya"t; Cincinnati Orchestra, under the direction of Thomas Schippers; The Buffalo Symphony Orchestra, The Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, The Philadelphia Pops Orchestra, The United States Navy Band, and the list goes on and on. A legendary composer, arranger and world renown concert artist and educator, Carrozza has been a true inspiration to humanity.

Carrozza’s success on the concert stage is matched only by his contribution to the development of accordion literature. In this area, he collaborated with outstanding American composers: Robert Russell Bennett, Henry Cowell, Paul Creston, Alan Havanhess, George Kleinsinger, Otto Leuing, Paul Pisk, Wallingord Riegger, Elie Seigmeister, William Grant Still, Carlos Surinach, Virgil Thompson, & Russian composer, Alexander Tcherepnin.

Carrozza considers solo concerts in Town Hall, New York City, as one of the high points in his career. At these concerts, he performed and premiered all original accordion works by the forementioned composers. It was a milestone in the history of the accordion.His performances of the works of these composers opened a new field for the generations of accordionists to follow and gives to composers a new instrument to use as a vehicle of musical expression. Concert accordionists of the future owe a debt of gratitude to Maestro Carrozza for paving the way for them to the concert platform.

Throughout the years Carrozza has received numerous awards and honorees from many different organizations, associations and clubs. On March 17, 2002 Maestro Carrozza was honored by the American Accordionists' Association and was the first recipient presented with the prestigious“Lifetime Achievement Award”. Shortly after this gala event, The Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund, (a fund for the advancement of promising young accordionists and the commissioning of new works for the accordion) began in the spring of 2002.

For further information: drjciccone@aol.com or AAA1938@aol.com
AAA Phone: 203-335-2045; Fax: 203-335-2048

Jon Hammond CD's for Sale

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


Frank Marocco Accordion Event (FMAE): An Amazing Time in Mesa, Arizona

by Rita Barnea
Joan and Dan GraumanThe FMAE event took place at the Arizona Golf Resort from February 16-20th in sunny Mesa, Arizona. Fifty accordionists from around the world gathered to share the music composed/arranged by accordionists Frank Marocco, Stas Venglevski, Joan Sommers, Amy Jo Sawyer, Peter DiGiovanni, and Judy Starr.

Those attending came from 14 states, 2 Canadian provinces, and Italy. Unfortunately, due to illness, Frank Marocco was unable to attend. His colleague, noted accordionist Stas Venglevski, assumed the role of FMAE Orchestra Conductor, soloist, Workshop Presenter plus more! .

Everyone enjoyed the full orchestra rehearsals, sectional rehearsals, workshops, demonstrations, and evening concerts. It was a friendly atmosphere where one could feel comfortable playing together. Breakfast, lunch and dinner were times of seeing old friends and cultivating new accordion friendships while being entertained by the attendees who ranged in age from 15 year old Canadian accordionist, Emmanuel Gasser, up to 90+! No one cared how old anyone was. The emphasis was on playing together and sharing musical experiences.

Thursday evening featured a wonderful concert by duet partners, Stas Venglevski and internationally renowned domra and mandolin player, Mischa Litvin, followed by participant performances. Friday evening also featured participant performances.

Workshop presenters included:
Elke Ahrenholz from Italy
Jana Maas: "The Best Things I Learned at Camp"
Lenny Feldmann: "How to Stroll"
"Teaching the Accordion Using Skype" with Vladimir Mollov presenting a lesson.
Master teacher, Llmar Kuljus, was available for lessons.

Stas Venglevski composed a beautiful orchestral piece, " Memories of Joe", to honor the memory of accordionist, Joe Smiell, who recently passed away. Its World Premiere was performed at the Saturday evening concert by 11 FMAE participants, who had played under Joe's baton over the years.

On the final Sunday evening concert, attended by about 400 people, the accordion was presented in many unique combinations. Domra virtuoso, Mischa Ltivin, played a concerto with the FMAE orchestra. Judy Starr performed Mozart's "Oboe Concerto in C". (see article in this months news). 2010 AAA Virtuoso Champion Gabe Hall-Rodrigues with Ocotrillo members Sean Brogan, and Wes Anderson entertained. They were joined by jazz artists John Simkus and Frank Petrilli. Stas Venglevski took the stage with them and all were entranced by the four superb accordionists with Wes on drums and Sean on bass.

Stas Venglevski and Mischa Litvin delighted all with their lively duets. Several soloists including Jana Maas and Emmanuel Gasser also performed.

Special thanks goes to FMAE organizers Joan and Dan Grauman (picture above right) whose excellent organisation and enthusiastic dedication resulted in all being happy and busy from morning until night either playing, listening to, talking about and learning our favorite instrument….. the accordion!

For further information: Joangrauman@verizon.net

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Walter Kasprzyk Performs with the Charlotte County Symphony Orchestra

by Rita Barnea
Walter KasprzykOn February 4, accordionist Walter Kasprzyk performed with the Charlotte County Symphony in Punta Gorda, Florida, under the direction of T. Francis Wada.The occasion was a concert called ‘The Best of Mantovani’. It was the first authorized concert, other than by a Mantovani orchestra, using actual Mantovani arrangements and a sold out affair, to an audience of over 900. The concert featured 21 selections, plus an encore.

Walter had major solo parts in many of the arrangements and three of them ended with a standing ovation. Mantovani had an arranger who was an accordionist and often included prominent parts for the accordion in his arrangements. The concert was held at the symphony's permanent performance venue at the Charlotte Performing Arts Center, located in Punta Gorda on the campus of Charlotte High School.

Walter Kasprzyk is part of the famous K Trio (with his sisters Mary Tokarski and Julie Cardona) and he studied at University of Bridgeport, Connecticut. Over the years, Walter has been a regular performer for the Florida Accordion Association SMASH, various functions of the Southeast Accordion Association, and at the American Accordionists' Association (AAA) events. Walter has previously performed Dominick Argento's "Valentino Dances" with the Charleston Symphony Orchestra.

For further information: ibqueen@bellsouth.net

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The Amazing Accordion Kings Perform on March 4th

by Rita Barnea
The Amazing Accordion KingsThe Dix Hills Center for the Performing Arts presents "The Amazing Accordion Kings" on Sunday, March 4th at 2:PM.The Accordion Kings are three master musicians who have created beautiful arrangements and cover the spectrum from opera to jazz. Angelo DiPippo, Frank Toscano and Manny Corallo perform music from around the world with amazing virtuosity.

Angelo DiPippo was voted best accordionist in America by the readers of Keyboard magazine and began playing accordion at eight years of age. He is a graduate of Holy Cross College with a Masters degree from C.W. Post College and an honorary Doctorate from Five Towns College. Angelo has played on thousands of recordings for some of the music industry’s most notable artists, including Peggy Lee, Billy Eckstein, James Earl Jones, Judy Collins, Roberta Peters, The Ramones, Robert Merrill, Harry Belafonte, Debbie Reynolds, Donald O’Connor, Randy Newman, Theodore Bikel, The Four Lads, Frankie Avalon, Jimmy Roselli, Enzo Stuarti, Claudio Villa, Luciano Virgelli, Connie Haynes, Don Sebesky, Mary Duff and Gilbert Becaud. Angelo and his Jazz Group have appeared at the Newport Jazz Festival and many other Jazz venues, including Birdland, the Café Bohemia, and Lincoln Center in New York. His appearances include: The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, The Today Show, The Regis Philbin Show, The New York City Ballet, Sesame Street and The New York Pops with Skitch Henderson. For seven years, he played with The Jackie Gleason Show’s musicians, Sammy Spear and His Orchestra.

Frank Toscano also has played the accordion since age eight and credits his upbringing in New York in an Italian family with helping to foster his love of music.  Music was valued in the home and his father encouraged him to take accordion lessons from Emilio Chiesa, who ultimately inspired Frank to make it his life. But instead of studying accordion at an established music school, at age 21 he founded his own, the Frank Toscano Music School in Queens. He has performed live with (and for) many artists including Mikhail Baryshnikov and Aidan Quinn and can also be heard on many recordings of other artists. He has performed with Joe Piscopo and vocalist Debra Toscano in addition to many steady engagements at prominent clubs in the Tri-State area such as the Playboy Club, North Hempstead Country Club, Rockland Country Club and more.

Manny Corallo began his musical career at age four when he started playing drums, but soon switched to accordion like his dad, and later studied under his father’s teacher, Frank Toscano.  Frank provided Manny with proper classical training, but he had a strong love for jazz and Manny develped the same love for it. Later, inspired by Angelo’s accomplishments and albums, Manny found out that he too had an interest in arranging and began his career arranging for tenor Peter Colombo, accompanying him on his Catskill Mountain tours as his piano conductor.

Soon after the tours, Manny met record producer and engineer Gerry “Doc” Comito of Sonic Sound Recording Studio in Freeport, NY. Manny’s next projects enabled him to write for live strings - something he still loves to do. After graduating college, Manny started teaching piano privately, and began his own dance band, 'Prime Time Live', which opened in Atlantic City for comedians Sal Richards and Paula Poundstone, and at the Brookhaven Amphitheater, as the opening act for the Count Basie orchestra. He has since branched into music composition and has scored a number of animated television series’ before recording with the Amazing Accordion Kings.

The Dix Hills Performing Arts Center at Five Towns College is one of Long Island’s most vibrant cultural organizations, combining the finest in world-class music and performance education in an acoustically superior theater. Five Towns College was founded in 1972, as a community resource for jazz/commercial music education, and today’s Dix Hills Performing Arts Center, provide entertainment, education and inspiration for more than 20,000 Long Islanders each year.

The Dix Hills Performing Arts Center is located at Five Towns College, 305 North Service Road, Dix Hills, New York, 11746-5857. For more information and ticket sales, contact the Dix Hills Performing Arts Center box office at (631) 656-2148 or email: manny@mannycorallo.com

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

LIAA Now Features Guest Artists

by Rita Barnea
LIAA LOGO
Paul BelanichThe February 7, 2012 session of the Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) ushered in a new and exciting phase in this fledgling organization’s tenure featuring for the first time a guest solo artist, Emilio Magnotta (Stamford, CT). By the response of the guests that filled La Villini Restaurant on this Tuesday evening, the experiment was very successful. Emilio presented a varied and entertaining program of many of the great classic accordion solos including selections by Pietro Frosini and Pietro Deiro.

The evenings festivities also included accordionists Joe Campo, Dominic Karcic, Bob La Bua, Ray Oreggia, Phil Prete, Franco Ruggiero and vocalist Connie Shakalis. Connie, accompanied by Dominic Karcic, performed “One Kiss,” “Oh! Mio Babbino Caro,” “Some Enchanted Evening” and a rousing rendition of the “Italian Street Song.” It was a great evening of music, song and, above all, “the accordion.”

The Alliance is proud to announce that guest artists will be presented at future meetings. Paul Belanich will be the featured guest artist for the March 6th 7 PM meeting. Paul was born on St. Peter's Island (Ilovik), located in the northern part of the Croatian Adriatic Sea. Here, as well as in many parts of Croatia, “the accordion is king” and is always the center and focal point of an evening’s entertainment.

Paul began to play the accordion at age five using his father's diatonic button box. His dream was to continue the family tradition. Both his father and two uncles played the accordion. Little did he or they know that he would far surpass their playing abilities and become a popular accordionist in the Croatian communities in the New York metropolitan area. Presently Paul performs with his brother in the tri-state area. He entertains in Slovenian and Austrian polka styles with a blend of the Valtaro Musette style with which he grew up.

Performing and playing mostly by ear, he has recently recorded some of his own compositions, which consist of various different rhythms as well as polkas and waltzes. He also sings in English, Croatian and Italian. Paul always says, "What fires me up the most and gives my heart the happiest feeling is polka music. My love for the accordion is the same today as it was back then when I began. I just hope that one day the American public realizes how beautiful the accordion is as a musical instrument.”

Performers at future meetings will be:
April 3rd   – International accordion virtuoso Mario Tacca and Mary Mancini
May 1st   – Internationally known Irish accordionist Paddy Noonan
June 5th - – International accordion virtuoso Mary Tokarski
All meetings are held at:
La Villini Restaurant
288 Larkfield Road.
East Northport, NY

For reservations and information: 631 – 261 – 6344

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

American Accordionists' Association 18th Master Class and Concert Series

by William Schimmel
AAA LogoThe Seminars!

REDEMPTION: THE RADAR OFF THE RADAR

It's a new kind of Radar!! Yes, and trust me, it's a new way of Redemption! It's the Radar off the Radar! The Seminars are 18 years old this year and they have found their own place in the marketplace of ideas in a new zone – off the Radar!! Yes, I say again – The Radar off the Radar!! It's a new kind of Radar – and it's looking for you!! It really is!! yes!

And you can find Redemption right smack in the middle of the accordion community. If I sound excited, I am – and it's OK to be excited

– Am I going too far with my enthusiasm? I don't think so but stay with me – I really mean what I SAY – and It's OK to be meaningful – it really is – I'm losing perspective – but that's OK – because perspective is relative to being in the radar – and we're talking about a new kind of radar – The Radar that's off the Radar!! Yes! - It's a new kind of Radar!! And Redemption is waiting for you there. Is it Salvation?? No, not exactly – It's Redemption – sort of like the Halleluia Chorus played by Dozens and Dozens of Accordionists – sort of like that – but not exactly –

Here's what our weekend will be!!
Here's what it will really be like – or something like it! And I really mean it – and that's OK.

Master Classes in the afternoon at 3 - you can play! Concerts in evening at 7 – distinguished lineup! Installations in the lobby.

Books – cds – dvds and other stuff sold in the lobby

Time to network and schmooze in the middle

Post concert fellowship at the end of the evening

JULY 27, 28, 29 – 2012 – and it's at
THE TENRI CULTURAL INSTITUTE
43A WEST 13TH ST
DR. WILLIAM SCHIMMEL – MODERATOR AND CURATOR

For more information: billschimmel@billschimmel.com

The Accordionaires Orchestra Performs on March 11th

by Rita Barnea
Janet HaneThe Accordionaires Orchestra under the direction of Janet Hane will perform on March 11th from 1-4 PM at the San Diego Accordion Club, Bailey Hall, San Miguel Covenant Village, 325 Kempton St., Spring Valley, CA. The show will be in a style similar to the Lawrence Welk or Dean Martin Show of the 1960's. Tickets are $10.

The Accordioniares Orchestra was founded in 1996 by former members of FOTA (Friends of the Accordion). The group consists entirely of accordions and some percussion. The orchestra practices twice a month in the Burbank, CA. area. If you are interested in joining, please contact Janet Hane.

Janet Hane is a well known accordion performer, teacher and conductor. Currently residing in Westlake Village, CA Janet has a busy schedule of professional solo performing appearances, private lessons and master classes and is also conductor of The Accordionaires Orchestra. Some of her teachers were Peter Sivanich, Carl Hane, and Tony Lovello.

The Accordion Club in San Diego, ALSI (Accordion Lover's Society International), is San Diego's forum for appreciating and performing accordion music. Anyone who enjoys listening to or playing the accordion is welcome as a member. The group has an accordion ensemble, monthly meetings and concerts featuring local and internationally famous accordionists. They meet on the second Sunday of each month.

For more information: Janet Hane 818-889-1565 or
San Diego Club President, Gordon Kohl at 619-427-4344

Sounding Out the Accordion by Thierry Benetoux

Anthony Galla-Rini:Legacies, Repetiteurs and Accordion Symphonies

by William Cosby
Nearly everyone has their own personal legacy. Most legacies are sustained through one’s lifetime and continue to live for some time in the memories of family and friends after that person passes. However, some legacies continue to enrich our personal lives for years or even decades.

Top photo: Anthony Galla-Rini with accordionist Esther Lanting and cellist Heidi King.
Left photo: Anthony Galla-Rini in 1968

Accordion Heroes 2012 will celebrate the legacy of Anthony Galla-Rini at the Fredericksburg, Virginia, event scheduled for June 20-24 – but it is more than just using a name to attract visitors. Galla-Rini created a wealth of musical arrangements that many consider critical cornerstones in the study of the accordion. But he is credited with other things that are more difficult to glean from a page of music or even an essay; like his vision on the accordion’s tonal capabilities. Musical performance exists in real time, and there are qualities, nuances and details that sheet music or even the greatest recording technology cannot capture.

Galla-Rini’s students often devoted hundreds of hours on a single detail, sometimes working on countless precursory steps until a concept became imprinted as an influence on their playing. As a teacher, Galla-Rini was a master in guiding a student through this process. The measure was always the musical outcome. It didn’t require extreme virtuosity; in fact, virtuosity could sometimes get in the way. Simple can often be the most difficult. Galla-Rini shared freely with his students so they ultimately could understand exactly what he was about. But in the true sense of an artist, he stressed that his vision was intended to contribute to his student’s artistry; it didn’t define it.

Several of the artists and educators at Accordion Heroes are considered Galla-Rini’s most respected repetiteurs and will bring his music and vision to life in Fredericksburg. Jorgen Sundeqvist came to the United States from Sweden specifically to study with the master. They ultimately toured throughout the United States and Europe together in addition to the creation of special arrangements and recordings. I was a student of Galla-Rini during several of my most exciting developmental years, to include preparation for the Frank Sinatra Musical Performance Competition, the recording the two Accordion Masterworks albums, the recording of the entire accordion works of Gregory Stone, and three Coupes.

But whereas Jorgen and I bring the fireworks, passion and technical detail to the workshops and concert stage of Accordion Heroes 2012, Esther Lanting, who will be mentoring, participating in workshops, and coordinating the Galla-Rini Band, promises to bring yet another treasure to the event – and that is a rarely-seen look into the personal side of Galla-Rini. Galla-Rini was a very private man and rarely discussed any parts of his personal life with his students. It was all about the music. But as the years passed, Esther stayed in very close contact with Galla-Rini and remained one of his closest friends right up to the end. As a repetiteur, her experience stands apart from the rest of us as she shared in the spirit and soul that defined not only the man but provides rare insight into the true foundation of his musical gift to the accordion. As a musical guide, her confidence in his work lets the beauty of the music stand on its own. The approach allows both the players and audience a very personal and direct line to the pure genius and craftsmanship of Galla-Rini.

Esther spoke recently of one of the last times she played for Galla-Rini very near the end of his life. As she described the small hand gestures from frail hands guiding her interpretation on details of the music I was envious; transported back some 40 years ago as I so vividly recalled my time with him.

And perhaps Esther is the most unique repetiteur, as she experienced what many of us would consider to be Galla-Rini’s greatest gesture. She has the master’s accordion. But she didn’t buy it in an estate, he wanted her to have it – and she played for him.

Open to all participants, the Galla-Rini accordion ensemble at Accordion Heroes will celebrate the legacy of his music for accordion band. Participants will learn from his repetiteurs his vision on how ensemble playing should contribute to the development of musicianship, but above all, they will experience the work of the master.

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Judy Starr Performs Oboe Concerto with Accordion Orchestra at FMAE

by Rita Barnea
Judy StarrJudy Starr performed Mozart's "Concerto in C for Oboe" with the 50 members of the FMAE Orchestra directed by Stas Venglevski on February 19 in Mesa, Arizona. What is truly unique about Judy is the fact that not only does she have a Master's Degree in Oboe Performance, but she is also an accordionist! About 400 people attended the FMAE concert and heard this special performance which also included orchestra selections by Frank Marocco and Amy Jo Sawyer.

California resident Judy Starr has played professionally with symphony orchestras and freelances on the West Coast. She arranged the Mozart "Oboe Concerto in C" specifically for the FMAE accordion orchestra. She also performed Ennio Morricone's "Gabriel's Oboe" from the film "The Mission" in another concert that weekend with accordionist, Gail Campanella.

How did Judy, who also plays many other instruments, become interested in the accordion? She talked about a cruise she took with her husband that stopped in Corfu, Greece. As they walked off the ship, there were three men playing instruments. One of them was an accordion. It was then that Judy decided that she wanted to play the accordion!

Presently she is studying with Frank Marocco. Judy said," Frank is the kindest, most patient and encouraging music teacher that I have ever had."

For further information: Jstarr@ccci.org

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Bill Schimmel in Concerts

by Rita Barnea
Dr. William SchimmelDr. William Schimmel performed George Friedrich Haas's "IN VAIN" with the Boston based chamber group, Sound Icon at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston, Mass. on February 3. This hour long work required two large segments to be played in total darkness - with occasional interruptions of strobe lights. Dr. Schimmel received a special feature in the Boston Globe.

On February 17, AAA Board member Dr. Schimmel performed Bernhard Gander's "O" for mixed quintet at the Bohemian National Hall in New York. The Concert was presented by the Talea Ensemble.

On March 6, Dr. Schimmel will perform "Origami" by Klaus Lang at the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York. The Concert is presented by The International Contemporary Ensemble. On March 8, Dr. Schimmel will perfrom Christopher Trafani's "Recession" and Ann Cleare's "I am not a Clockmaker" for Accordion and Live electronics at the Issue Project Room in Brooklyn, NY. Both pieces were composed and realized at the IRCAM Center in Paris and the concert is sponsored by Music at the Anthology.

On March 15, Dr. Schimmel will perform with Opera Diva, Lauren Flanigan, at the Park Avenue Armory . Following will be his performance at the Mannes College of Music of his own "Tango Sonata for Piano and Shadowed Accordion" with Pianist, Dr. Hugo Goldenzweig.

He now heads the Neupauer Conservatory Order of the Shield program, a private studies program for gifted students on a graduate and post graduate level. Dr. Schimmel conducts a three day master class and concert series sponsored by the American Accordionists' Association (where he is distinguished lecturer in residence) moving into its 18th season. The Confederations International of Accordionists have awarded Dr. Schimmel the distinguished merit award for the AAA Master Class and Concert Series as well as his contribution to the international accordion scene. He received the American Accordionists' Association Distinguished Service Award for Fifty Years of Accordion activity and his work as Lecturer in Residence. He is listed in Who's Who in America and Great Minds of the 21st Century.

For further information: billschimmel@billschimmel.com

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Future events

Arizona Accordion Club Activities

by Rita Barnea
Arizona Accordion Club Logo
The Arizona Accordion Club orchestra will present a concert on Sunday, April 22, 2012 at 2:PM. The orchestra was recently formed to provide a venue for accordionists who enjoy this form of music. Interest grew quickly and twelve club members have been rehearsing weekly. The program will include classical and standards pieces. In addition, there will be solos, duets, trios to round out a 90 minute program. Jack Dermody, President of the Arizona Accordion Club, is the director. 
 
The concert takes place at the Franciscan Renewal Center Chapel located at 5803 East Lincoln Drive, Scottsdale AZ.  Tickets are $8 and sponsor tickets, with guaranteed front row seating, are $15 per person. Sponsors can also be listed in the program. The Arizona Accordion Club concert tickets are also raffle tickets with the winner’s choice of one of two beautiful accordions.

The Arizona Accordion Club has regular meetings on the Third Monday of each month at St. Stephen’s Church Hall, 8141 North 16th Street, Phoenix AZ 85020.  Food is served 5:30-8:PM. Pre-meeting music begins at 5:45, and the main program at 6:30 PM. Local accordionists, musicians and music lovers are encouraged to attend  a meeting to enjoy the music and to participate as well. 
 
There will be workshops at the March and April meetings. March, will feature Fred Ziwick who will teach the playing of Cleveland Style music in a pre-meeting workshop at the March 19 meeting from 2-5:PM. Mario Pedone will perform on April 16 from 2-5:PM. Admission for workshops is $25.

For tickets or more information, please contact Jack Dermody at Dermody@cox.net and phone 602-237-5627; or Phil Fox at pwfox@prodigy.net and phone 480-427-2394.

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

Accordion Heroes Festival: June 20-23 in Virginia

by Rita Barnea
Alicia BakerAccordion Heroes LogoThe Accordion Heroes Festival will be held from June 20-23, 2012 at the Fredericksburg Hospitality House in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Accordion Heroes honors the accordion artists, teachers, craftsmen, family and friends who have enriched lives by sharing the gift of music. It also celebrates the American Tradition by preserving the music, heritage and pedagogy of America's accordion culture.

Featured artists and educators include:
Jamie Maschler, Hannah Jane, Michael Bridge, Jorgen Sundeqvist, William Cosby, Stas Venglevski, Tony Lovello, Patricia Bartell, Lena Rist Larson, Bruce Gassman, Lou Coppola, Corky Bennett, Pete Contino and more.

Photo on left of Alicia Baker

The 2012 Showcase Artists confirmed to date are: Michael Bridge, Jamie Maschler. Cory Pesaturo, Hannah Jane, Alicia Baker, and Christopher Gorton.

The event will have a Galla-Rini Banquet, Master sessions, Contino Caberet, workshops, bands, teacher workshops, special events, artist performances, and vendors.

Also coming soon will be more information on sign-up and participation in a showcase band at Accordion Heroes 2012 including the first ever Accordion Heroes All Female Accordion Orchestra. Check future USA News issues.

Accordion Heroes 2012 will include activities presented by the Accordion Heroes Staff in addition to activities and special events hosted by sponsors.  Unique to this event will be numerous presentations by participants in the Young Artist Workshop and Showcase.

Individual 'Small Group Sessions' are currently scheduled to include: Basic Tone Production,
Basics of rhythm
Learning and how to learn quickly
Exercises and Building Technique through repertoire
Bellows Shake Technique
Introduction to Musical Styles
Introduction to Ethnic Styles
Paths to learning accordion repair and maintenance
Playing with other instruments

The goal of Accordion Heroes is to encourage increased integration of the accordion in the musical culture of the America’s by embracing the instrument’s versatility and diversity. Accordion Heroes will host activities specifically designed to enhance the capabilities of those with a professional interest or passion for the accordion, including the enthusiast, professional, accordion club & organization, teacher, and the industry that supports them. Accordion Heroes is looking to mentor the next generation of young accordionists. More info in future issues of the USA news.

For more information: info@accordionheroes.com

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AAA Festival in Baltimore from July 11-15th

by Rita Barnea
2012 AAA Poster
The American Accordionists' Association presents the 2012 AAA Festival from July 11-15th, 2012 at the Sheraton City Center Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland. The AAA Festival will present another great event! New this year is the Junior Festival Orchestra under the direction of Mary Tokarski. This event is designed for those young people who are not quite ready to participate in the Festival Orchestra or who have never had the experience of performing with other accordionists. Mary has selected some fun pieces and rehearsals will be scheduled to avoid competition schedule conflicts. Interested participants should contact Mary at Mary.tokarski@comcast.net.

Another new addition is the “Finale” workshop which will be a hands-on workshop with the basics of learning this music writing program. AAA member, Don Gerundo, will conduct the workshop with support materials supplied by the people at Finale.

Back by popular demand will be the Youth Outreach Jazz Ensemble with select young musicians from the Baltimore school system partnered with ambitious young accordionists. Both the Junior Festival Orchestra and the Youth Outreach Jazz Ensemble will perform at the Awards Concert on Saturday afternoon, July 14th. If you want to participate in this great (and fun) program, contact Marilyn O’Neil (Marilyn@ctaccordion.com). All of these events are included in the registration.

The Festival will also see the return of the Digital Entertainment category so be sure to visit www.ameraccord.com for updated events including PDF files for downloading all Festival application forms.

Thursday night will feature an Italian Cabaret night. Enjoy a delicious Italian dinner while being entertained by wonderful accordion music by the Potomac Ensemble conducted by Joan Grauman. Enjoy singer, Soprano Joy Bechtler, Tenor Joe McKesson, and Dr. Robert Young McMahan as well as accordionists playing and singing your favorite Italian songs!

Friday evening performers include the Busso Trio (comprised of Frank; Frank, Jr.; and Christina) and Tatiana Semichastnaya. Virtuoso accordionist Stas Venglevski will be the Guest Artist and Guest Conductor of the Festival Orchestra. He delights all with his friendly and humorous manner, educating and entertaining at the same time. Truly a unique experience you will want to see and hear.

This year the Festival Orchestra features Mary Tokarski as soloist. Vladimir Mollov and Mary Tokarski will also be featured as “two soloists”. Dr. Robert Young McMahan will be joined by prominent classical saxophonist Dr. Paul Cohen in a performance of McMahan’s new composition for accordion and saxophone.

Vladimir Mollov, virtuoso accordionist, will perform solos and also duets with his wife, renowned violinist, Annie Mollova. Gabe Hall-Rodrigues and Frank Petrilli will perform solos and duets at concerts during the Festival. Please refer to the San Francisco Accordion Club article in the January issue for their biographies. Other performers and workshop presenters include: Cody McSherry, Amanda and Michael Parziale, Joe Zale, Linda Warren, and Manny Bobenrieth with the United States Army Strings and more!

Plan this summer around the festival's exciting days of Workshops, Exhibits, Cabaret, Luncheon Concert, Gala Concert, and Festival Orchestras. The event will be held at the Sheraton City Center in Baltimore. It is surrounded by shops, restaurants, and in walking distance of the famous Baltimore Inner Harbor, National Aquarium, Maryland Science Center and numerous other attractions.

Please refer to the AAA Website and the USA news for updates on the festival. For further information:aaa1938@aol.com

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

ATG Festival: July 25-29th in Lisle (Chicago), Illinois

by Rita Barnea
ATG Logo
The 2012 Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International (ATG) Festival which takes place in Lisle (Chicago), Illinois July 25-29th, features the ATG Festival Accordion Orchestra. This year will be no exception, with the exciting addition of ANIMA, a renowned Youth Choir from Chicago joining the Festival Orchestra for a moving performance of "Let There Be Peace on Earth".

ANIMA means breath, life, soul, spirit and mind and reflects the Choir's mission to transform young lives through excellence in music education and choral singing. ANIMA is a world class youth choral organization, founded in 1964, which is internationally renowned for the quality of choral education and performance it provides. Formerly the Glen Ellyn Children’s Chorus, ANIMA welcomes young people from Kindergarten through High School in various ensemble programs.

The Choir will have just returned from a major Concert Tour of Europe, and we are excited that they will be part of the Saturday Evening Concert singing with the ATG Festival Orchestra.

Director of the ATG Festival Accordion Orchestra, Joan C. Sommers, has had many years of experience as a teacher and conductor of prize-winning accordion orchestras and ensembles of various sizes. She welcomes you to take part in this year's ATG Festival Orchestra.

You are invited to bring your accordion and play in the group, either for the first time or once again, and since there are parts suitable for everyone, playing abilities of all levels can be accomodated. Many players rarely have the opportunity to sit and play exciting music alongside others from all over the USA and abroad. You are encouraged to take part in this popular and musically rewarding experience.

If you wish to participate in the ATG Festival Accordion Orchestra, please contact Joan C. Sommers and she can provide all the information you need.

E-mail: Joan C. Sommers joansommers@kc.rr.com

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

Bayanist Stas Venglevski with Mischa Litvin on Domra

by Rita Barnea
Stas Venglevski and Mischa LitvinBayanist Stas Venglevski and domra virtuoso, Mischa Litvin will entertain at the San Francisco Accordion Club on March 18, 2012 at 2:00 pm at the Oyster Point Yacht Club, 911 Marina Blvd., South San Francisco. Admission is $10.

Stas Venglevski's artistry, sensitivity, creativity and dazzling technical command have brought him increasing acclaim as a virtuoso of the bayan. A two-time first prize winner of bayan competitions in the Republic of Moldova, Stas Venglevski is a graduate of the Russian Academy of Music in Moscow where he studied with the famed Russian bayanist, Friedrich Lips. His repertoire includes his own original compositions and a broad range of classical, ethnic and contemporary music. He has toured extensively as a soloist throughout the former Soviet Union, Canada, Europe, and the United States and he has performed with symphony orchestras throughout the United States, including world premieres of "Concerto No. 2" by Anthony Galla-Rini and "Of Bayan and Beyond", composed for Stas by Dan Lawitts.

An accordionist, arranger, composer, conductor, and teacher, Stas Venglevski has produced numerous recordings and has published several books of original compositions. He recently conducted and performed as soloist, and with Mischa, at the Frank Marocco Accordion Event this past February, and will be the Guest Artist and Conductor at the American Accordionists Association (AAA) 2012 festival in Baltimore, MD in July. He also will be a featured guest artist at the Accordion Heroes Event June 20-23 in Fredericksburg, Virginia.



Mischa Litvin is a master mandolinist and domra (Russian-style mandolin) player. He has soloed with chamber orchestras in Russia, Italy, Germany and elsewhere, and is a professor of mandolin at the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music. He is originally from Minsk, Belarus and holds a masters degree in orchestra conducting and music education. Mischa performs frequently with Stas and other duet partners in the US and around the world. Both Stas and Mischa currently reside in Milwaukee. 

There will be a special admission price of $10 to hear these two internationally renowned musicians.

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. Membership is open to any individual expressing interest in the accordion and accordion music and wishing to join. The only qualification for membership is the payment of annual dues as established by the Executive Board.

For further information: info@sfaccordionclub.com

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Fred Ziwich to Teach Workshop: THE POLKA - CLEVELAND STYLE

by Rita Barnea
Fred ZiwichAccordionist Fred Ziwich will conduct a 3 hour master class workshop on "The Polka-Cleveland Style" on March 19 at 2:PM for the Arizona Accordion Club at St. Stephens Hall Back Room. You will learn the key elements of the Cleveland Style with examples from the Kings of Cleveland Style such as Frank Yankovic, Joey Misculin -- and of course, Fred Ziwich! You will also learn how to play 2nd accordion with fill-ins and so much more. Here is Fred’s bio directly from the plaque in his honor at the Polka Hall of Fame in Euclid, Ohio:

Fred Ziwich is known as just about the most versatile musician ever on the Cleveland polka scene. He is a virtuoso on several instruments, a prolific recording artist, and an expert musical arranger. As a bandleader, the “International Sound Machine” has mastered, performed and recorded all of the major Polka styles.  All the while maintaining a huge repertoire of popular music.  There's no music he can't play -- and perform well.
 
It was probably obvious to anyone who knew him as a youngster, that Fred Ziwich was destined to become a musician. He took his first accordion lesson at the age of 5, and was able to read music before reading English.  Then, to be able to play in the school band, he started taking clarinet lessons in the 4th grade. The next logical step was the saxophone, and he tried that for the first time in the 8th grade.  The next major instrument that he learned was the button box, as he taught himself to play 6 songs in the days during his Easter Vacation of his senior year in High School. 
 
As a teenager, he formed the Fred Ziwich Trio, and performed twice for Tony Petkovsek’s “Polka Band of Tomorrow Contests.”  He joined the Hank Haller ensemble in 1973 and played for about 4 years. Upon receiving his music degree from Indiana University, Fred formed the “International Sound Machine” in 1977. The purpose was to feature music of all nationalities. In 1983, Fred made music his career and went on to record and perform with many other bands, such as Joe Beno, the Imperials, Linda Lee and the GoldenAires, Adam Barthalt, accordion champion Don Lipovac and Polka-Hall-of-Famer Hank Haller. Fred released his first album in 1979 and has since been a leader, or studio musician on over 90 recordings. You can hear him on albums by Hall-of-Famers Walter Ostanek and Joe Fedorchak. World Renowned Sounds released twenty recordings with Fred playing all of the instruments as the “International Sound Machine”. For their live performances, Gary and Christopher Byndas have performed with Fred for more than 20 years.
 
Fred is a regular on the dance schedule of Frank Sterle's Slovenian Country House and the German Central Farm in Parma, Ohio and was a favorite at the Czech Karlin Hall. Since 1993, Fred has been the musical director of the German Music Society brass band (Deutscher Musik Verein). He also directed the Jadran Slovenian Chorus.
 
Members of the National Cleveland Style Polka Hall of Fame and Museum have honored Fred as Musician of the Year and Button Box Player of the Year, as well as awards for Best New Song and Album of the Year.
In 2007, Fred married his biggest fan, Marilyn. He teaches the piano accordion, Button Box, Clarinet, Sax, Flute and Trumpet and hosts two internet polka shows.
 
For further information: President Jack Dermody: dermody@cox.net
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