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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Aug-2015
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Titano Accordion Company


Editor's Note
Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA
Accordions Around the World in Bryant Park, NYC
Dr.William Schimmel Releases New CD
Frank Busso, Jr. and the US Air Force Strings
Progress of Documentary "Accordions Rising"
Hubert Gall - 12 years "KA" at Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas
18 year old Rebecca Bracewel to Perform with Victoria Symphony Orchestra
5th Annual Historic Wallace Accordion Festival
Accordion Concert Tribute to 
Ilmar Kuljus on August 21 in Spokane

Voci Armoniche

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

2015 American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Festival A Huge Success
Vitaly Kondratenko (Russia) Wins $20,000 1st Prize Deffner Competition
Video: Viatcheslav Semionov Performs at the AAA Festival
Grayson Masefield Performs at 2015 AAA Festival
MAAA Celebrates Sam Falcetti
Video: Eddie Monteiro Trio at AAA Festival, Alexandria
John Smoltz Enters Baseball Hall of Fame
Italo-American Accordion Co. is Marking 100 years Owned by Family
"Adagio For Strings" Arrangement by Joe Soprani
Historic LP "Lou Jacklich Plays", Re-released as eTracks Album - USA
Sy Kushner and Ken Maltz, Klezmer Duo on August 5
Dan Newton in ‘Accordion-O-Rama’ Concert, Minnesota
AAA Seminars August 7-9 in NYC
Cotati Accordion Festival August 22 and 23 in California
Video: George Secor - Look What This Little Accordion Can Do!

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Future events

Corky Bennett and "Day of the Accordion"
Accordion Band Festival in Bryant Park, NYC
Emilio Magnotta to Perform for LIAA on September 2
Acclarion to Release New CD in September
Connecticut Accordion Association Invites Musicians to Perform

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

New and Updated Sites

Site Updated: Florida Accordion Association
Chapter 16 "Warm Up, Before You Play" by John Bonica



Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Editor's Note

by Rita Barnea
Editor Rita BarneaAccordions in the park! Accordions in the movies! Accordions with symphonies! Accordions at festivals! Accordions and Wynton Marsalis!

Wow! The accordion does everything and goes everywhere!

Find out more in the August USA news! Enjoy!

Comments and ideas are welcome:

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

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

Titano Accordion Company

Accordions Around the World in Bryant Park, NYC

by Harley Jones
Accordions Around the World
Accordions Around the WorldThe Accordions Around the World Festival in Bryant Park, New York runs each Wednesday, from July 1st to August 26th, at 6 to 8:PM.

Each week, 10 accordionists perform throughout the park, playing music from many countries and genre. Bryant Park invite you to "Take a cross-cultural musical journey - from France to Colombia, from the Balkans to Louisiana, from Cumbia to Jazz, and more - with accordions, harmoniums, concertinas, and bandoneons."

On Friday August 28th, there is a special event, Accordion Band Festival, 4:30 pm to 10:00 pm, with 6 groups featuring an accordion and music from Eastern Europe, Colombia, France, Ireland, Argentina, and New Orleans.

List of remaining performances and information:

Wednesday, August 12, 2015 | 6:00pm – 8:00pm | Throughout Park
Papa Joe De Clemente - Italian + American Standards; Maestro Tito Castro - Bandoneon: Argentine Tango; Eli Bass - French Musette + Jazz; Ismail Butera - World; Alma Mia - Colombian Cumbia + Vallenato; Melissa Elledge - American Rock + Roots; Shoko Nagai - Japanese + Jewish; Tony Kovatch - French Musette; Jeremy Bloom - Balkan; Eduardo de Carvalho - Brazilian Forró.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015 | 6:00pm – 8:00pm | Throughout Park
Gregory Grene - Irish; Matt Dallow - American Rock + Blues; Christina Crowder - Klezmer; Yuri Lemeshev - World, Classical + Jazz; Kenny Margolis - Zydeco + Blues; Suzanne Davenport - Musette; Eva Salina - Balkan; Sadys Rodrigo Espitia - Colombian Cumbia + Vallenato; David Hodges - Bandoneon: Argentine Tango; Lyndon Blaylock - Concertina: English;

Wednesday, August 26, 2015 | 6:00pm – 8:00pm | Throughout Park
Charley Layton - Vaudeville, Ragtime + Musette; Christy McNamara - Concertina: Irish Traditional; Karl Sandeman - Celtic, French + Latin; Yuri Lemeshev - World, Classical + Jazz; Art Now - American Standards; Uri Sharlin - World; Jenny Luna - Balkan + Turkish; Maestro Tito Castro - Bandoneon: Argentine Tango; Phil Passantino - Zydeco, Cumbia + Vallenato; Melissa Elledge - American Rock + Roots.

SPECIAL EVENT: Friday, August 28, 2015 | 4:30pm – 10:00pm | Throughout Park
6 groups featuring an accordion and music from Eastern Europe, Colombia, France, Ireland, Argentina, and New Orleans.

Slavic Soul Party: Throbbing funk grooves, Gypsy accordion wizardry, and virtuoso jazz chops: an acoustic mashup of the gospel, techno, funk, dub, jazz, and Latin influences of NYC’s neighborhoods into a fiery Balkan brass setting.

Foncho Castellar & Los Alegres De Colombia: Cumbia and vallenato rhythms led by the renowned accordionist and folklorist who has been promoting Colombian culture in the US for 30 years.

Avalon Jazz Band: Parisian and Golden Age swing with a repertoire of timeless American standards and French jazz songs: old classics with a hot twist celebrating France, love, and music.

Niall O'Leary Irish Band: A celebration of Irish music brought together by the former All-Ireland and World Dance Champion, who is in demand as a musician, dancer, choreographer and master dance instructor in North America, Ireland, Mexico, Japan and Thailand.

Los Chantas: From the guardia vieja to the present in the great Argentine tango tradition, the multinational ensemble plays original arrangements of songs by Gardel, Troilo, Salgán, and Piazzolla with an improvised style in milongas and clubs around NYC since 2002.

Krewe de la Rue: Heartfelt and punchy dance hall mix of Cajun and Creole music, capturing the style and energy of the festivals and clubs throughout Southwest Louisiana.

Voci Armoniche

Dr.William Schimmel Releases New CD

by Rob Howard
Dr. William Schimmel's CDWilliam Schimmel’s new CD, ‘Theatre of the Accordion’ will be released on Roven Records at the end of July. The album features solo works written and performed by William Schimmel, and featuring guest artist Wynton Marsalis.

Aiming to expand the range of the accordion repertoire, on this CD Bill Schimmel plays his versions of ‘Der Rosenkavalier’, ‘Carnival of Venice’, ‘Candide Overture’, and Mahler's ‘Ninth Symphony’. Other tracks include ‘St. Louis Blues’, ‘Wozzeck, the Winner’ (Schimmel), ‘Sonata for Fiddler’, ‘Discarded Melody’, ‘According to Schoenberg’, and MicroBella’. He is joined by nine-time Grammy winner, trumpet player Wynton Marsalis on ‘St Louis Blues’ and Mahler’s ‘Ninth Symphony’.

Tom Waits said, "Bill Schimmel doesn't play the accordion, he IS the accordion. This CD is a true crossover: it will appeal to classical listeners, jazz listeners and the millions of people worldwide who play the accordion".

Dr. William Schimmel is one of the principal architects in the resurgence of the accordion, and the philosophy of ‘Musical Reality’ (composition with pre-existing music). He holds Bachelor of Music, Master of Science and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in composition from the Juilliard School, along with a diploma from the Neupauer Conservatory of Music in performance/composition. He has performed on CDs with everyone from Sting to the Scent of a Woman and the Billboard No. 1 CD, ‘The Tango Project’.

Dr. Schimmel conducts an annual three day Master Class and Concert Series (‘The Seminars’) sponsored by the American Accordionists’ Association, dedicated to the exploration and establishment of an accordion culture. 2015 is the 21st year of the AAA Seminars, which take place from August 7th to 9th at the Tenri Cultural Center in New York City.

Dr. William Schimmel is currently performing in ‘An American in Paris’ at the Palace Theatre on Broadway in New York. In addition to his performances, he also developed and realized the accordion part to give the show that distinct Parisian flavor along with the Gershwin Score. The show has been nominated for 12 Tony awards. A cast album has been released on the Masterworks label.

For further information email:

Accordion Jazz Chords

Frank Busso, Jr. and the US Air Force Strings

by Rita Barnea
Air Force Strings
US Air Force StringsAccordionist Frank Busso, Jr. will perform with the US Air Force Strings in various locations in the northeast over the next few days. All concerts are free. From the United States Air Force Band website:

"Master Sgt. Frank J. Busso Jr. is the accordionist with the Air Force Strings, The United States Air Force Band, Joint Base Anacostia-Bolling, Washington, D.C. Originally from Staten Island, N.Y., his Air Force career began in 2005.

Sergeant Busso attended Boston University and received a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration in 2001. He studied accordion with Frank Busso Sr. at the Staten Island Music School in New York. Prior to joining the Air Force, Sergeant Busso was an instructor and arranger with the Boston University Athletic Bands. He was also an instructor at the Staten Island Music School, where his students earned many regional and national titles in competition.

As a competitive accordionist, Sergeant Busso received numerous regional titles from the Accordion Teachers Association of New Jersey, including the organization's virtuoso championship in 1995. He also earned multiple national titles from the American Accordionists' Association in classical, popular, and ethnic competitions. Since 2001, Sergeant Busso has performed in concert as a member of The Busso Trio at numerous summer festivals hosted by the American Accordionists' Association and the Accordionists & Teachers Guild."

The Uniteds States Air Force Strings offer seven free concerts on the following dates:
July 31 ~ 6 p.m.
Snow Pond Center for the Arts
8 Goldenrod Lane
Sidney, ME 04330

Aug. 1 ~ 7 p.m.
Veteran's Memorial Park
889 Elm St.
Manchester, NH 03101

Aug. 2 ~ 1 p.m.
Prescott Park Arts Festival
105 Marcy St.
Portsmouth, NH 03802

Aug. 3 ~ 11 a.m.
Portsmouth Music and Arts Center (a fun, interactive musical event for children of all ages)
973 Islington St.
Portsmouth, NH 03801

Aug 4 ~ 3:30 p.m.
University of Hartford
Hartt School of Music
Millard Auditorium
200 Bloomfield Ave.
West Hartford, CT 06117
( Attendees should use parking lot D)
Aug. 5 ~ 6:30 p.m.
Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church
1000 W. Main St.
Lansdale, PA 19446

Aug. 6 ~ 8 p.m.
Shenandoah Valley Music Festival
221 Shrine Mont Circle
Orkney Springs, VA 22810

The Air Force Strings will collaborate with educational Organizations through its AIM program. ( Advancing Innovation Through Music) educational outreach program. This is a special highlight of the tour.

Some of the organizations which they are working with include the New England Music Camp, Portsmouth Music and Arts Center, Hartt Suzuki Institute, Shenandoah Valley Music Festival.

For further information:


Progress of Documentary "Accordions Rising"

by Roberta Cantow
Accordion Uprising Logo

For those patiently waiting the release of "Accordions Rising", here is the news on my progress:

I am fully moving toward completion, meaning I am doing the arduous work of preparing the film  for color correction and sound mix, and checking and re-checking the ultra long credits list, making sure I have everything right. I am also  still scraping money  together to pay for music licensing, errors and omission insurance in addition to all the final post production.The results of the fundraising campaign that I did were worthy and greatly appreciated but not quite sufficient.

Although the film will be completed at the end of August or early September, depending on the schedule of colorist and sound mixer, the actual "release" of the film will not take place until it screens at a film festival. In fact, in some cases, selling the film from my website in advance  of a  film festival release could disqualify it from  festivals that require premiere status.  As a way around this, people who donated to the film via the fundraising campaign will receive "pre-release" copies. 

The film's website (  is now set up to receive additional donations ($50.00 in exchange for one of  the CDs that  were not taken during the campaign) as well as donations of any amount  (very much needed, especially to help with festival fees and marketing). If others would like to receive pre-release copies, they can email me at the address noted on the website ( to arrange for that with a payment of $35.00.

Once the film is eligible for sales from my website, I will provide a notice to that effect here. Depending on what occurs with distribution, I will be looking to partner with accordion shop owners, manufacturers and others who might be interested in selling copies for Video on Demand and digital download from their websites.

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

Hubert Gall - 12 years "KA" at Cirque du Soleil in Las Vegas

by Holda Paoletti-Kampl
Hubert Gail
Hubert GailSome years have passed, since Hubert Gall decided to move to Las Vegas and to start his adventure with the most famous circus in the world – the “Cirque du Soleil“ created by Guy Laliberté who began his career as a fire-eater, juggler and accordionist in Montreal.

In 1984 Guy Laliberté founded the Cirque du Soleil thanks to the great friendship with a billionaire, met during a trip to Las Vegas, who decided to fully finance the project Laliberté.

Today the company is considered the world's most important in the entertainment industry and has approximately 4,000 employees. Laliberte is also considered one of the most eccentric and extravagant environment because of some special events in his life, most notably his climb that led him from a fire eater beggar to multi millionaire on the Forbes list of the world's richest.

Hubert Gall is collaborating with this important show since many years, performing his accordions, acoustic, digital and diatonic every evening in front of approximately 4,000 people, who come to watch the show running now for 12 years, known as “KA” at the magnificent MGM in Las Vegas!

I had the pleasure of meeting Hubert Gall personally last week and viewing the show as well as looking “behind the scenes!” I am in the pictures right and below (in black) with Hubert Gall and some of the caste.

In 2009 Accordions Worldwide published an interview with this interesting artist – read more:
Hubert Gail

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

18 year old Rebecca Bracewel to Perform with Victoria Symphony Orchestra

by Rita Barnea
Rebecca Bracewel
splashIt isn't every day that an 18 year old accordionist plays with a symphony orchestra! Rebecca Bracewel will perform at the Victoria Symphony Splash on August 2, 2015 on a floating stage at the Inner Harbour. The program begins at 1:PM. Rebecca performs after intermission.

Rebecca's accomplishments are amazing due to her great talent. She has achieved all of this while having a severe hearing loss diagnosed when she was three years old.

She has only been playing the accordion for 3 years having switched from piano. Last year, Bracewell was judged best classical accordionist under 18 at the Victoria International Accordion Festival. She also recently placed at the Leavenworth International Accordion Celebration in Washington state.

Rebecca moved to Victoria recently to study with Jelena Milojevic who is the artistic director of the Victoria International Accordion Festival. Rebecca's selections will be "Libertango" and "Oblivion" by Astor Pizzzolla.

The Symphony Splash is in its 26th season. It is a free event although $5 donations would be greatly appreciated to fund the orchestra's activities. Victoria Symphony Splash is an annual Victoria Symphony event that takes place on a floating stage moored in Victoria’s Inner Harbour. It includes musical entertainment, food, souvenirs and the evening’s highlight: a live performance by the Victoria Symphony.

Splash is now one of the largest annual symphony events in North America, attracting up to 40,000 Victoria residents and visitors from all over the world, some who visit Victoria just to see Splash! Over 400 volunteers help to bring the event to the community.

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

5th Annual Historic Wallace Accordion Festival

by Rita Barnea
Dempsey'sAndy MirkovichThe 5th Annual 2015 Historic Wallace Accordion Festival takes place on August 7, 8 & 9. This year features the Dempsey's as one of the Friday night Entertainers for the German Buffet and Dance, to be held at the Nite Rock Events Center.

On Saturday night, Andy Mirkovich returns for a concert and dance in that same venue. There will also be the traditional Saturday morning Celebration Parade, workshops, and gazebo music.

The Festival Schedule:
Friday, August 7, 2015
Registration Opens 10:AM, Nite Rock Event Center
Gazebo music starting at 1:PM (call 208 699 7554 if you wish to reserve a play time)
Workshop by Andy Mirkovich 2:PM
Workshop with Jean Roberts 3:PM
German Buffet served from 5 to 6:30 PM, music and dancing all evening, Nite Rock Event Center
(Featured musicians include the Dynamic Accordion Duo -Tom and Judy Dempsey of Montana)

Saturday, August 8, 2015
Registration Opens 9:AM
Accordion Celebration Parade  10:AM (line up at 9:45 AM; everyone welcome and encouraged to be in our parade; walk or ride)
Gazebo Music starting after parade
Workshop by Andy Mirkovich 2:PM (different topic than Friday)
Workshop with Jean Roberts 3:PM. (continued from Friday)
Saturday Night Concert starring the accordion star of Seattle - Andy Mirkovich, with Opening Entertainment by the Ted Lunka Trio; Nite Rock Event Center

Sunday, August 9, 2015
Farewell Breakfast and Accordion Church Service, locations to be announced.

The Annual Accordion Festival is sponsored by the Historic Wallace Chamber of Commerce.
Call: 208 753-7151.

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Accordion Concert Tribute to 
Ilmar Kuljus on August 21 in Spokane

by Rita Barnea
A group of accordionists will present a concert in honor of Ilmar Kuljus, whose dedication to and promotion of accordion, especially in the Spokane area, has made a tremendous impact on the worldwide accordion community.

The concert takes place at St. Mark's Lutheran Church in Spokane, Washington on August 21, 2015 at 7:PM and features many of his former students as well as other players from the Spokane area. Ilmar celebrated his 85th birthday in June, and this concert is dedicated to his life's work.

From the NWAS Website: "Ilmar was born in Estonia, a tiny country in northern Europe, which became a battleground between then Soviet Union and Nazi Germany during WWII, and subsequently remained occupied by the USSR until its collapse in 1992. Before the Soviet takeover, Ilmar managed to escape to war-torn Germany in 1944, where he remained in refugee status until emigrating to the US in 1950.

He moved to Spokane in 1952 and established the Accordia-Nova School of Accordion which he managed for 53 years, retiring in 2002. In addition, he taught foreign languages in the Spokane public schools for 23 years.

Ilmar is a graduate of EWU and has a Master’s degree from the University of Washington. He is a pioneer in introducing the accordion as an ensemble instrument in the US by forming groups of students to play parts of voicing similar to choral and orchestral style. In this en- deavor, he had to provide special arrangements not available or published. As a result, there now exists a collection of such transcriptions, some of which you will hear during this concert.

Throughout his career in music, Ilmar was frequently sought to adjudi- cate competitions and evaluate the entrants level of competency, both in the US and Canada. His own students have won awards both locally and internationally.

Ilmar now resides summers in Coeur d’ Alene and winters in Arizona. He still teaches a few students via SKYPE, two of whom will be playing in this concert."

Mark your calendars and come pay tribute to Ilmar Kuljus.
For more information: Eileen Webber 509-290-6858.

Titano Accordion Company

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

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

2015 American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Festival A Huge Success

by Rita Barnea
AAA FestivalThe 2015 AAA Festival was held in Alexandria, Virginia July 8-12, 2015. Attendees were delighted with the vast array of accordion activities ranging from competitions to virtuoso concerts.

The Faithe Deffner Memorial Competition report is below.
Winner of the Elsie M. Bennett Composition Competition: Daniel Benedetti
Honorable Mention: Joseph Ciccone and Will Comer.

For a complete list of winners, please view: 2015AAA-Results.pdf

The AAA competition categories took on a whole new perspective this year with category prizes being awarded as "merit awards" which meant that each competitor received a true mark of the technical and musical proficiency of the performance from the judges and subsequently awarded prizes according to the mark they received.

The Luncheon Concert on July 9 featured: The Potomac Accordion Ensemble directed by Joan Grauman; Robert (accordion) and Rocio (castanets) Ford; Mark Nejako (accordion) and Nick Sungenis (violin); Ken Kunec, accordion.

There were many excellent workshops including:
Mary Tokarski: "So You Want To Play With Your School or Community Orchestra".
Dr. Robert Young McMahan and Melody Ben Flah: " Playing Between the Cracks, the accordion and its place in Tuning Experiments"
Ken Moulton: "What It Takes to Run the Mantovani Orchestra"
Paul Ramunni: "The Accordion-A Living Legacy and Part of our American DNA"
Rita Barnea: "The Music of Eugene Ettore"
Prof. Joan C. Sommers: "How to Prepare Properly for a Rehearsal"
SGM Manny Bobenrieth: "Playing for Uncle Sam"
Lauren Brody "Klezmer and Balkan Ornamentation for Accordionits"

The Thursday evening concert featured the Busso Festival Orchestra conducted by Frank Busso, Jr. with Amanda Parziale, vocalist. Frank Busso, Sr. also sang. The orchestra entertained everyone with a program of popular music, show tunes, etc. It is really inspiring to see family members involved. Frank Busso, Jr. as conductor, his father Frank Busso, Sr. in the orchestra with his daughter, Christina, who also played the flute.

The Friday Concert featured the talents of: Grayson Masefield, Joe Natoli, Dr. Robert Young McMahan with Cecylia Barczyk, cello, Viatcheslav Semionov, The Eddie Monteiro Trio, and the Accordion Pops Orchestra directed by Al Terzo,

Kevin Friedrich was MC of the Saturday Evening Concert which featured the 2015 AAA Festival Orchestra conducted by Al Terzo. Don Gerundo performed for the Pre-Banquet Cocktail Hour. Manny Bobenrieth and the United States Army Strolling Strings, a group of 20 professional musicians, was a truly impressive presentation of music including Broadway show tunes and much more. It added great elegance to the occasion.

Opportunities for ensemble playing for youth was a Junior Festival Orchestra conducted by AAA President Mary Tokarski. Bob Vitale conducted the 2015 Youth Jazz Ensemble which included accordion, trumpet, trombone, sax, bass, and drums.

The 2015 Festival was enjoyed by everyone thanks to the dedicated efforts of the AAA Officers and Festival Coordinators including: AAA President and Contest Chairman Mary Tokarski, Dr.Joseph Ciccone, Linda Soley Reed, Frank Busso, Sr., Dr. Robert Young McMahan, Joan Grauman, Marilyn O'Neil, Frank Busso, Jr. and ob Vitale.

Make sure to put the 2016 AAA Festival on your calendar. It takes place July 6-10, 2016 at the Adams Mark Hotel in Buffalo, New York.

For further information:

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

Vitaly Kondratenko (Russia) Wins $20,000 1st Prize Deffner Competition

by Kevin Friedrich
Faithe DeffnerRussian accordionist Vitaly Kondratenko won the $20,000 first prize, the largest prize ever offered in an accordion competition, and maybe in any classical musical competition! The Faithe Deffner Memorial Competition was held at the recent American Accordionists' Association (AAA) festival in Alexandria, Virginia in memory of their President Emerita, the late Faithe Deffner.

The four contestants were required to perform three rounds of competition. Round I was a Test Piece, Herrick's Road for accordion and percussion by Karen Fremar. Karen wrote this as an AAA commission in honor of Faithe's Gala Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009, depicting her busy life working on behalf of the accordion from her office located on Herrick's Road in Mineola, NY. Round II asked the contestant to choose any movement from Divertimento by Viatcheslav Semionov and a short classical program. Also commissioned by the AAA, Prof. Semionov dedicated Divertimento to Faithe in honor of her many years service as AAA President. Round III called for a short entertainment program.

A dynamic personality in the accordion world, Faithe Deffner was born on the 17th March 1931 and passed away on the 3rd June 2014. She translated her passion for accordion into action as she devoted her life's work to elevating and advancing the instrument worldwide. Throughout her career, Faithe Deffner has participated in almost every aspect of the accordion world.

Whether helping to fill the decks of a cruise ship with 700 participating accordion enthusiasts playing 'Anchors Aweigh' as they sailed past the Statue of Liberty, or staging the 2007 Coupe Mondiale in Alexandria, Virginia, the largest international accordion event ever staged in the USA, or arranging for Myron Floren to conduct six busloads of accordionists performing at the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, or collaborating with Lawrence Welk Resorts in a two-year “Search for the Hottest Accordionist", Faithe created numerous and significant opportunities to publicly showcase talented accordionists.

After her passing, a friend and AAA Presidential advisor, Steve Stolaruk provided a generous donation that gave an unprecedented $20,000 first prize with additional cash awards of $3,000 & $2,000 for 2nd and 3rd. In addition, Anne Bargou and Linda Soley Reed offered additional financial support that enabled the AAA to host the 'Faithe Deffner Memorial Competition'. Host for the competition was Kevin Friedrich with adjudicators being Joan Cochran Sommers and Joe Natoli.

Prize Winners were as follows with their programs which were performed in addition to the set piece Herrick's by Karen Fremar.

1st: Vitaly Kondratenko (Russia)
Divertimento (2nd mov. - Nostalgia) by V. Semionov
Rakoczy March - Liszt/Horowitz
Chiquilin de Bachin by F. Angelis
Valse Caprice by V. Semionov

2nd: Emmanual Gasser (Canada)
Divertimento (2nd mov. - Nostalgia) by V. Semionov
Green Sleeves & Scenarios from the Renaissance by Semionov
Accordion Rag by Rossi/Astier
Ranch of the Merry Jack by Tikhonov
Notes Vagabondes by C. Thomain

3rd: Rachel Quirbach (USA)
Divertimento (2nd mov. - Nostalgia) by V. Semionov
Concerto in A minor by Grieg, arr. Magnante
Yard Bird Suite by De Rossi
Omaggio ad Astor Piazzolla by Zubitsky

4th: Szyu Zhu (China)
Divertimento (2nd mov. - Nostalgia) by V. Semionov
Austurias by Albeniz
Winter (1st mov.) from Four Seasons by Vivaldi
Variations on an Ukrainian Theme, arr. Palmer & Hughes
Celestial Beauty Scattering Flowers by Yugiu Li

The 2016 American Accordionists' Association (AAA) festival will take place from July 6-10, 2016 in Buffalo, NY and will include an excursion to the famous landmark Niagara Falls. For more information please visit:
AAA Winners

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Video: Viatcheslav Semionov Performs at the AAA Festival

by Dan Grauman
Bulgarian Suite in Three Parts performed by the composer Viatcheslav Semionov (Russia) at the 2015 AAA Festival Gala Concert in Alexandria, Virginia.

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Grayson Masefield Performs at 2015 AAA Festival

by Dan Grauman
Grayson MasefieldAAA LogoGrayson Masefield performs at the 2015 AAA Festival and received two standing ovations.

1. Hommage a Paco - Franck Angelis
2. Oblivion - Astor Piazzolla
3. Phils Tango - Phil Bouvier
4. Tico Tico - Zequinha Abreu

eTracks mp3 download album available at: Grayson Masefield

Titano Accordion Company

MAAA Celebrates Sam Falcetti

by Catherine Coleman, Editor, MAAA Newsletter
Sam Falcetti
Sam FalcettiThe accordion community came together at the Massachusetts Accordion Association (MAAA) June 28 meeting to honor Sam Falcetti--renowned accordionist, musical pioneer, conductor, professor, competition judge, and founder of Falcetti Music. The heartfelt musical afternoon included an open mike with the theme “Songs Sam Taught You” and presentation of a special award.

Welcoming everyone, Tony Marini, MAAA President, observed that “Today is Sam Falcetti Day,” while noting that Sam remains very active in the accordion world, teaching more than 30 students ages 10-75 years old who come from throughout New England for their lessons. Sam also leads the New England Digital Accordion, which performs on August 1 from 6:00-7:30 pm as part of the Mount Carmel 90th Italian Festival, 93 Park Avenue, Enfield, CT.

A native of Wilbraham, MA, Sam began playing accordion at the age of 10. He graduated from University of Hartford with a bachelor’s degree in theory and composition, and during the 1970s and ‘80s was an adjunct professor at Holyoke Community College and Westfield State University. His accordion college ensemble performed twice at Carnegie Hall. He was the conductor and founder of the Springfield Accordion Orchestra, which performed at the World’s Fair in Japan in 1970, the David Frost Show with Roberta Flack, and the Coupe Mondiale in New Zealand in 1980, among many other prestigious appearances.

As founder of Falcetti Music, a full-line music store in Massachusetts, Sam provides Roland V Accordion sales, service, and instruction and is the distributor for all of New England. In October 2011, Sam represented the US as a judge at the 5th Roland International Festival in Rome. In April 2013 Sam conducted the first digital accordion orchestra in the country, which featured 20 Roland accordion players from across New England, at the Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts annual festival. (You can see and hear the orchestra on YouTube.)

Performing during the meeting’s open mike session, which was themed Songs Sam Taught Us, Jim Avedisian dedicated his vocal-and-Roland performance of “On the Road Again” to Sam, then demonstrated the Roland’s versatility with renditions of “Love Me Tender“ and “La Vie en Rose.“ Carmen D’Angelo, who also performed during the open mike, commented, “I’ve been playing a Roland for about one year. It takes a lifetime! I’ve been working with Sam, trying to master the thing. I’m trying to do a little more with the bass than what we grew up with. It’s a lot of fun and a lot of challenges.”

Saluting his colleague and friend at the MAAA celebration, Paul Monte recalled co-founding the Massachusetts Accordion Teachers Association with Sam, who he described as “A great teacher and performer, a great guy and pal of mine. Sam has played the whole gamut of the accordion, from the acoustic to the Roland.”

Accepting his award, Sam remarked, “This is a great day for me. All through life, alI I needed was to have a goal. I wasn’t seeking recognition--my purpose was to do my job. In 1952, when I was a senior at Hartford College, I opened up my store. Three years later I had 450 students.”

He also recounted when and why he became an enthusiast of the Roland digital accordion. “I realized the Roland is a different kind of instrument. It can sound like any kind of orchestra you want. I had conducted major accordion orchestras, and now I had strings and oboes. We are embarking on a new instrument. You can put it on a memory stick and everyone can take it home and practice. You can change the key so it suits the singer. I can’t wait for the day the accordion becomes popular again. MAAA, keep up the good work!”

Don McMahon spoke on behalf of all MAAA in his keynote, which is reproduced here with Don’s permission. “At age 13, after 5 years of accordion lessons, I was ready to quit music, but a friend suggested I give it one last try at a newly opened studio, the Indian Orchard Accordion Center. During my first visit, I immediately knew there was something different about this studio. The 26 year-old owner told me about the many group performances he had planned throughout the year, the wide variety of instructional material he offered, the AccordioPhonic Octet that I would audition for, and the individualized course of study he would use. This meant that I could learn more about playing in a band, plus a healthy dose of exercises, theory, and repertoire. I was sold. The year was 1960, and the young teacher was Anselmo “Sam” Falcetti.

“It didn’t take long to realize that Sam’s brain was always cranking out new ways to expand the business, motivate the students, improve the level of instruction, and create a ‘home away from home’ atmosphere where the students could interact both musically and socially. On the business end, Sam was already planning the next market to tap and expansion to new locations. As we know, Sam could sell umbrellas in the Sahara, bikinis in Siberia, and accordions to everybody else. Then one of his customers said ‘If you really have pride in your business, you would put your own name on it’ and so it became the Falcetti Accordion Center.

“Motivating students was a priority for Sam, so he formed an organization of parents to assist in the efforts. Between Sam, his wife Peggy, and the Parents Club’s support and fundraising, they found local, national, and international venues in Italy, Japan, and New Zealand for the orchestras to perform at, and even a spot on the nationally televised David Frost Show.

“Sam and Peggy were also founding members of the Accordion Teachers’ Association of Massachusetts (ATAM), using participation in the yearly competitions to motivate students and improve their performance skills. To increase my personal motivation, Sam used to take me to local venues to hear and meet the top jazz accordionists in the area.

“To expand and improve the curriculum and get the staff working together as a team, Sam started monthly teachers’ meetings to give the teachers direction and to listen to their suggestions. He also initiated projects to generate an original curriculum to supplement what was lacking in the published material.

“Although lessons and band rehearsals were scheduled on a weekly basis, we all felt comfortable showing up at the studio at any time to practice, rehearse, form impromptu groups, and socialize with the other students and teachers. This kept us off the streets, focused on positive activities, and many lifelong friendships, and even marriages, were formed there.

“Sam was always very progressive, and he was one of the first to recognize the need to expand teaching beyond the accordion into guitar, organ, piano, and voice, so after several years Falcetti Accordion Center became the Falcetti Music Center, which then became a household name in western Massachusetts and northern Connecticut.

“Throughout his 50 years at the helm, he rarely slowed down his teaching, innovating, promoting, marketing, and expanding. When Sam eventually retired, he headed straight for the old rocking chair at his cottage. That lasted about an hour and then he was off and running with his new love, the Roland V-Accordion. Sam approached me to help demonstrate the Roland FR-7, and as many of you know, it’s futile to try to fight Sam’s power of persuasion. So, even though I had been away from the accordion for over 25 years, I soon joined him in his new post-retirement adventure.

“Those of you who have purchased a Roland are well aware of his free programming lessons, the semi-annual workshops he puts together, and, of course, the Roland Digital Accordion Orchestra. These are the kind of extras that grow out of his love of music and the music business.

“What I’ve been describing is only from my own personal perspective, and I wouldn’t be the musician I am today without him, but Sam has also touched the lives of thousands of students, parents, teachers, customers, and associates. He has always been a force for positive change in the industry and in the lives of the people he’s taught and worked with throughout the years.

“Sam has, of course, received many awards for his accomplishments, some were for business, some were for marketing, and some were for community service. This award, however, is being given by people who simply want to say ‘Thank you for helping to advance the instrument that we all love. Thank you for showing that one person can truly be a force for progressive change. Thank you for bringing music into the lives of countless people for over five decades. And thank you for a lifetime well spent.”

Photo caption:
Members of the MAAA Board of Directors and the Falcettis. From left to right:
Lewis Howes, Carmen D’Angelo, Tony Marini, Ed Wawrzynowicz, Sam Falcetti,
Jim Avedisian, Peggy Falcetti, and Rocco Scenna. Photo: Carol Avedisian

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Video: Eddie Monteiro Trio at AAA Festival, Alexandria

by Dan Grauman

Video of the Eddie Monteiro Trio with Eddie Monteiro (accordion), Mitch Guido (saxophone) and Todd Harrison (drums) at the 2015 AAA Festival in Alexandria, Virginia.

Video 1: BeBe by Hermeto Pascoal, in which Eddie does scat singing for which he is famous and One Note Samba by Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Video 2: Secret Love by Sammy Fain & Paul Francis Webster

John Smoltz Enters Baseball Hall of Fame

by Rita Barnea
John SmoltzMichigan Accordion Society Member's John and Mary Smoltz's son, former Atlanta Braves pitcher, John Smoltz, received the highest Honor of being inducted into the Major League Baseball Hall of fame in Cooperstown, NY in July 2015.

His speech talks about growing up with the accordion which can be seen at the link below at approx 6:15 into his acceptance speech. John Smoltz discusses his journey to Cooperstown after being inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

His parents originally wanted him to be an accordion player. Here is what John Smoltz said in his speech at his induction into the MLB Hall of Fame:

"You didn't know much about sports or baseball. You pretty much knew about what you knew, and that was playing the accordion because that's how you guys met. You were accordion teachers, and I thank you for the opportunity that you started me in my quest to be the next Lawrence Welk at the age of 4. I played until the age of 7 and then I hit you with the ultimate whopper of all whoppers. At the age of seven I said, "I know what I'm gonna be in life and I'm gonna be a Major League Baseball player." You loved me enough to give me room to go after my dream."

The rest is history!

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

Italo-American Accordion Co. is Marking 100 years Owned by Family

by Rob Howard
ItalyThe Romagnoli family has been running the Italo-American Accordion Company in Oak Lawn, Illinois, for 100 years. Rosanne Romagnoli (picture below) runs the Italo-American Accordion Co. out of a storefront on 95th Street, the third-generation of her family to do so over 100 years.

Her grandfather bought the company in 1915, and it's still going strong - no longer making accordions but selling and repairing them. Romagnoli said her grandfather emigrated from Italy to San Francisco with a brother but eventually settled in Chicago, where he bought an accordion factory with two of his brothers.

"We're from the town where the bellows for accordions were invented, Castelfidardo, Italy," she said.

The factory was on Taylor Street in Chicago's Little Italy and moved to 3137 W. 51st St., in Chicago. In 1996, the factory closed, two years after her father died, but her mother opened the store, 5510 W. 95th St., that same year. "We've been here ever since," she said.

Her mother and father, Anne (picture left) and Joe, started running the business in the 1950s when her grandfather returned to Italy. She proudly hauls out a Chicago Tribune magazine that featured a story about her father in the early 1990s.

"I'm not really the head honcho. My mother thinks she is. I don't like to say I run the show. Let's say the family does," Romagnoli said. "I've got great employees. At one time we had 100 employees. We have four now."

Her mother (picture left) is the company's best saleswoman, she said, and while in her 80s "still plays the accordion beautifully."

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

"Adagio For Strings" Arrangement by Joe Soprani

by Rita Barnea
Joe SopraniClick sound file above to listen. Accordionist Joe Soprani performs his special arrangement for accordion and strings of "Adagio for Strings" by Samuel Barber.

Joe said, "I thought you would be interested in this arrangement of Adagio for Strings by Samuel Barber which I arranged for accordion solo with string orchestra.  I am preparing this for a memorial in memory of my student Ron LaMar who passed at the age of 52.  

He lost his battle with prostate cancer.  I started him in the 5th grade at Harrity Elementary in Philadelphia on the baritone horn and he later advanced to the trombone and became quite proficient on it in classical and jazz.  I  guided him throughout his career from Turner Middle School to Overbrook HS Music Magnet Program to Temple Univ.  

He did his student teaching with me at Lamberton High School where I was the Instrumental Music Director for 20 years.  He was quite a talented fellow and developed into one of the finest instrumental music teachers and band directors in Philadelphia.
Ron was the band director at Tohickon Middle School for many years.  We had developed a special friendship and had remained in touch throughout the years.  

He always invited me to his programs where ever he taught and invited me to perform on the accordion many times with his school ensembles.  He was loved by all parents and students.  He was one of a kind and I will miss him."

For further information:

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

Historic LP "Lou Jacklich Plays", Re-released as eTracks Album - USA

by Harley Jones
Lou Jacklich Plays CD CoverDuring the July 2014 Accordionists & Teachers Guild, International (ATG) convention in San Francisco, Lou Jacklich was recognized in honor of his lifetime dedication to the accordion profession.

Lou Jacklich, teacher-performer-electronic accordion pioneer, born in 1928, has had a fascinating professional life with the accordion which is detailed in the new website, written by Pamela Tom.

Also re-released is the LP "Lou Jacklich Plays", now released as eTracks mp3 download for only US$8. Cat: jacklicheT

The album features many evergreen accordion favorites. You can also purchase individual tracks as mp3 downloads for only 99 cents each.

1. Holiday for Strings
2. Espana Cani
3. Dance of the Hours
4. Jalousie 'Tango Tzigane'
5. Kitten on the Keys
6. Dizzy Fingers
7. Who's Sorry Now (A La Shuffle)
8. On the Trail
9. The Flight of the Bumble Bee
10. Malaguena
11. Carnival of Venice
12. Granada

Picture below: San Francisco Accordion Club first lifetime achievement award presented to Lou Jacklich by club president, Lynn Ewing, September 2014.
Lou Jacklich presentation by Lynn Ewing,

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

Sy Kushner and Ken Maltz, Klezmer Duo on August 5

by Rita Barnea
Sy Kushner and Ken MaltzRecologie presents the Ken Maltz/Sy Kushner Duo on Wednesday, August 5, 2015, 7:PM at Recologie, 49 Lawton Street, New Rochelle, New York.

Clarinetist Ken Maltz is a versatile, well known musician who has made hundreds of appearances. He is a founding member of Kapelye Klezmer band. He is also a member of ASCAP and serves on the Board of Driectors of Long Island Traditions.

Accordionist Sy Kushner has performed since the age of 13 and specializes in Jewish Klezmer music. Sy has transcribed early klezmer music from the original 78 rpm recordings and has released two volumes of printed music, The Klezmer Fake Book, Volumes One and Two. He also has 4 CD's available with the printed music.

Recologie is a multipurpose venue consisting of a boutique committed to promoting sustainable products, a vegan-vegetarian cafe and performance space.

General admission tickets are available at the door. There is a $15 Music Cover plus two drink minimum or food equivalent.

For further information:

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Dan Newton in ‘Accordion-O-Rama’ Concert, Minnesota

by Rob Howard
Crossing Logo
An annual concert titled ‘Accordion-O-Rama’ took place on Friday July 31st, 8pm, at Crossings, 320 East Ave., Zumbrota, Minnesota. Performing were accordionists Dan ‘Daddy Squeeze’ Newton and Mark Stillman, and the German-born bandoneon player Bob Barnes.

“This show proves that the accordion is anything but passe,” said Marie Marvin of Crossings. “I’m not sure what ever gave us the idea to have three or four accordions on stage at one time; maybe it was just how truly ludicrous the whole idea was. But we stopped laughing when the concert sold out — as it does year after year. Our patrons knew better than we did how great the music is.”

Newton enjoys mixing up styles and genres that don't generally seem compatible. "Ethno-clectic Bop" is the result of his genre-bending experiments with Celtic, Tex-Mex, Creole, Blues, Jazz, Scandinavian, Polka and pop music.

A Minnesota-based accordionist, singer and composer, Newton has been dazzling audiences since 1987 with his sparkling skills and mind boggling repertoire. A performance by Newton is like a one-man festival of world music. He has a command of many styles including French Musette, Jug band, Country Blues, Cajun, Zydeco, Tex-Mex, and much more. He uses his astonishing squeeze-box prowess to support a warm, inviting vocal style and seasons his performance with stories that are both humorous and enlightening.

Stillman is a self-taught accordionist who learned much of his repertoire in his travels throughout Eastern Europe. He often plays Klezmer music, which is a fusion of styles including jazz, swing, and traditional Jewish wedding music, but he's steeped in the folk music of Eastern Europe, Greece, Celtic tradition, France and Italy, as well.

A classically-trained percussionist, Stillman has been a featured soloist with the Minnesota Orchestra, Minneapolis Pops Orchestra, Milwaukee Symphony, Minnesota Sinfonia, the Dallas Brass, and on A Prairie Home Companion, and has performed for the recordings of the multi-ethnic rock group Boiled in Lead.

Barnes was born in Frankfort, Germany. He plays the bandoneon in Mandrágora which plays a weekly Sunday night Milonga at the Loring Pasta Bar in Minneapolis. In 2003, Barnes added a piano and a string quartet to the mix and created the Mandrágora Tango Orchestra, a larger group dedicated to more symphonic tango styles.

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

AAA Seminars August 7-9 in NYC

by Rob Howard
AAA Logo
Dr. William Schimmel2015 is the 21st year of the AAA Seminars, which take place from August 7th to 9th in New York City. which take place from August 7th to 9th in New York City. Involved are Dr Robert Young Mc Mahan, Micki Goodman Schimmel, Paul Stein, Will Holshouser, Benjamin Ickies, John Foti, Art Bailey, Doug Makofka, Erica Marie Mancini, and many others.

Most members or the Brooklyn Accordion Club will be participating, including Mayumi Miyaoka, Peter Flint, Denise Koncelik, and a performing group called Bachtopus.

In addition to accordionists, also participating are the theremin player Elizabeth Brown, sho player Michael Dames, a trombonist, violinist, concert pianist, harpist, guitarist, plus others.

The event includes world premieres: Dr. Mc Mahan, Dave Soldier, David First, David Stoler, Elizabeth Brown, Normali Fenn, Peter Flint, Milica Paranosic, Gene Pritsker, Dan Cooper, Peter Jarvis, Art Bailey, and Dr Schimmel’s new CD: ‘The Theatre of the Accordion’.

The initial intent of the Seminars, starting with the first one back in 1994, was: to build a strong artistic accordion community in the New York area, a community of artists that could communicate on an equal level to the rest of New York’s diverse artistic community, reflected in the event’s workshops and performances.

The Seminars are not just a series of workshops and concerts: it’s an experience, a total immersion into a weekend where judgements are suspended, competition comes to a halt and the steady flow of ideas can almost make one’s head spin.

All are welcome to attend this year’s Seminars: ‘Chock full O’ Learnin’ - August 7th, 8th, and 9th at the Tenri Cultural Center in New York City:

For further information email:

Cotati Accordion Festival August 22 and 23 in California

by Rita Barnea
2015 Cotati Poster
The 25th Annual Cotati Accordion Festival will be held August 22 and 23, 2015 at La Plaza Park in Cotati, California. The festival features great bands and soloists from all over the USA.

For info:
Cotati Benefit

Video: George Secor - Look What This Little Accordion Can Do!

by Joan Grauman Morse, AAA Historian
George Secor performs the popular Brahms Hungarian Dance No. 5 on his small accordion with 25 keys and 15 bass buttons.

Look What This Little Accordion Can Do!

At the ATG Festival in Lisle, Illinois last week, we wandered into the exhibit room where George Secor was playing Brahms’ Hungarian Dance #5. “Nice playing” I thought – and then I saw his tiny 25 key, 15 bass piano accordion.

I was fascinated and watched intently. This is NOT a Stradella bass, I surmised. George explained that the little instrument has the Moschino free-bass system, which allows him to play music that's as complex technically in the left hand as it is in the right hand.

George Secor is a native of Chicago and began to study the accordion at the age of 6 in 1950. From the age of 10 until he was 22, he studied with Mario Moschino, a Chicago-based accordionist and teacher who developed the Moschino free-bass system.

George switched to a full-size Moschino free-bass accordion in 1961, and it so revolutionized his playing that he has never even entertained the idea of going back to the Stradella system.

George retired a few months ago from a long career in information technology. He is now working hard to promote the Moschino free-bass system, which he describes as "easy to play and fun to learn", and will be happy to share his information with all who are interested.

George can be reached by email at

Future events

Corky Bennett and "Day of the Accordion"

by Rita Barnea
Day of the Accordion
Corky Bennett is a jazz pianist, accordionist, singer and stand up comic. He is the producer of "Day of the Accordion" which takes place on Sunday afternoon, September 27, 2015, 1-8:30 PM at the North Star House, 12075 Auburn Rd.,Grass Valley, California.

Featured performers will include: Corky Bennett, , Pete Contino, Ron Borelli, The Truccos, Patsy Hannenrink with Emcee Fran Cole. There will be an accordion open jam session and socializing from 1-3 PM. You are welcome to bring your accordion. The concert begins at 3:PM.

The price is $20 for an all day pass. Bring your own food, drinks, and chairs. For further information:

Voci Armoniche

Accordion Band Festival in Bryant Park, NYC

by Rita Barnea
Bryant Park
The Accordion Band Festival takes place in Bryant Park, New York City on Friday, August 28, 2015 from 4:30 to 10:PM. The event is sponsored by the Bryant Park Corporation.

Come out for a wonderful  evening filled with an assortment of accordion music styles.  Just a short walk from Grand Central, what better way to spend a summer evening in midtown Manhattan!

Featured bands include: Krewe de la Rue, Los Chantas, Niall O"Leary Irish Band, Avalon Jazz Band, Foncho Castellar & Los Alegres De Colombia, Slavic Soul Party.

Accordions Around the World in Bryant Park happens every Wednesday from 6-8;PM from July 1- August 26, 2015. It is a cross cultural musical journey featuring ten accordionists each week! Be there to hear a varied group of very interesting accordionists.

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Emilio Magnotta to Perform for LIAA on September 2

by Rita Barnea
Emilio Magnotta
The Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) sponsored by La Villini Restaurant will present an evening of accordion music with featured guest artist, Emilio Magnotta, on Wednesday, September 2, 2015 at 6:PM at La Villini Restaurant located on 288 Larkfield Road, East Northport, NY. Phone: 631-261-6344. Reservations are recommended.

Emilio is an accordionist who specializes in Italian, Folk, American Standards and light classical music. He began playing the accordion when he was 5 years old. A friend of his mother gave him an accordion to play with. From the moment the accordion was placed in his hands, a passion awoke in Emilio to play it.

He studied the accordion under the accomplished accordion player, Cliff Scholl, who was a student of Pietro Frosini. Mr. Scholl wrote accordion books and conducted concerts including ones at Carnegie Hall. Under the instruction of Cliff Scholl, Emilio’s passion for the accordion grew..

Emilio continues to be inspired by the great accordion players before him. His greatest idols and influences have been the works of Carmen Carrozza, Pietro Frosini, Charlie Magnante and Pietro Deiro. Emilio continues to perfect his skills in the hopes to one day be considered as great as his idols.

Emilio shares his love of the accordion and music as he entertains audiences in many different venues such as private parties, corporate functions and outdoor festivals. Emilio also repairs and sells accordions of all brands and sizes.

On Wednesday, October 7, 2015 the featured artists will be
vocalist Cheryl Spielman and accordionist Dominic Karcic.

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

Acclarion to Release New CD in September

by Rita Barnea
AcclarionPromotional video for Acclarion "Shattered Expectations"

Acclarion's new CD, "Shattered Expectations" will be released on September 25, 2015. Acclarion is a husband and wife team with David Carolillano on accordion and Rebecca Sajo-Carovillano on clarinet. They met as students at the Universit of Toronto falling in love as they practiced together for their Masters of Music recitals.

They enjoy playing classical crossover music, traveling all over the North American continent entertaining in their unique way. Bios from Acclarion website: "David Carovillano - Accordion: David Carovillano holds a Masters degree in performance from the University of Toronto, Faculty of Music. David is one of a small handful of concert free-bass accordionists in North America, and a student of Canada’s accordion pioneer Joseph Macerollo.

Having competed in various music festivals throughout North America, he has received over 140 awards for his playing and he has received several scholarships from the University of Toronto.  David participated in master classes held in Venice Italy, studying under noted German accordionist, Hugo Noth.  He has performed on numerous television, radio shows and theatre productions, including City TV's Breakfast Television, Insight Productions' Ready or Not, HGTV's Design for Living, Global TV/MTV, a solo concert in 2001 with CBC’s Music Around Us, the Stratford Festival's production of Fiddler on the Roof and the “new Mozart musical”,  The Magic of Love for which he appears on the original cast recording, conducted by Charles Cozens. 

David has performed in various chamber capacities with members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, The Toronto Winds, and I Furiosi, as well as being featured in new music concert series presented by Collaborations and Array Music.  In addition to performing, he is active as a music educator, festival adjudicator, and clinician.  As a composer and arranger, his music has been featured on radio, recordings, and live concert performances in North America and Europe. 

Rebecca Sajo-Carovillano - Clarinet, holds a Master of Music degree from the University of Toronto, Faculty of Music.  She is the first person in the university’s history to major in multiple woodwind performance.  Rebecca is proficient on all clarinets, bassoon, saxophone, and flute. She has studied with clarinetist Peter Stoll, saxophonist Alex Dean, and bassoonist Kathleen MacLean as well as playing in master classes for James Campbell and Sabine Meyer. 

She was a finalist for two years in the Canadian Music Competitions, is Royal Conservatory silver medalist on clarinet and saxophone and earned her ARCT in clarinet performance when she was just 16.  Rebecca has played with the National Youth Band, the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, and the Toronto Philharmonia.  Rebecca participated in the Henry Mancini Institute in Los Angeles where she played with musicians such as Paul McCandless, Randy Newman and Arturo Sandorval.

Her musical versatility was displayed through performances of classical, jazz, pop and film music with some of LA’s finest musicians.  As a teaching-artist, Rebecca maintains a private music studio, is frequently sought after by schools to coach wind and chamber music ensembles, and has developed music programs for schools in three Canadian provinces."

Acclarion says, "Frenzy" is a piece that combines chaos and order; intensity and relaxation; virtuosity and lyricism. An Acclarion original, this piece is designed to showcase the bass clarinet as a viable solo instrument. The technical challenges are many in this piece, but Becky tackled them like a trooper and gave ol' "Bertha" (her bass clarinet) a workout.

This piece is a little bit of a stretch from some of our usual repertoire, and will require multiple listens to start extracting some of the intricate musical lines and character of the piece. We hope you enjoy "Frenzy", which will be part of our upcoming third CD. Be sure to visit our website to listen to samples and purchase CDs and digital downloads.

Copyright Notice: Frenzy is an original composition ©2014, by David Carovillano written exclusively for the duo, Acclarion."


Connecticut Accordion Association Invites Musicians to Perform

by Marilyn O'Neil, Youth Involvement Program Coordinator
CAA Banner
The next gathering of the Connecticut Accordion Association will be held at 1:00PM on Sunday, September 27, 2015, at Vasi's Restaurant, 1700 Watertown Ave., Waterbury, CT.

The afternoon called “Accordion Plus” is an open mic event. Any and all musicians welcome to join with an accordionist to perform. $5.00 per person to CAA members. Non members: $10.00 per person.

The Connecticut Accordion Association is dedicated to the promotion of the accordion through all music genres and all variations of accordion instruments! We welcome musicians who play all types of accordions....piano accordion, diatonic, chromatic button and more. We invite accordionists at all levels, and people who may not play the accordion, but love to listen.

Our goals are:

* To promote public interest in the accordion through public awareness.

* To hold monthly meetings, workshops, conventions, concerts and other activities throughout the state of CT.

* To act as a resource to provide referrals in accordion instruction, repair, sales and/or trade, sheet music, accessories, etc.

* To network with fellow associations throughout the USA in an effort to provide unity within the accordion world.

RSVP Marilyn at 203-272-1202 by September 25.
Visit the club on the web at

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

New and Updated Sites

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

Site Updated: Florida Accordion Association

by Harley Jones
Florida LogoThe site of the Florida Accordion Association has been updated.

Titano Accordion Company

Chapter 16 "Warm Up, Before You Play" by John Bonica

by Harley Jones
Play Your Accordion Without Pain book coverJohn Bonica PT CMP NZRPChapter 16 of the book "Play Your Accordion Without Pain" by John Bonica PT CMP NZRP is now released.

This chapter is about protecting your body from potential injury and unnecessary stress while playing or practicing your accordion.
- Warm Up Before You Play ...
- Stretch Before You Squeeze....
addresses in detail with exercise examples, the subject of adequate warm-up preparation prior to practice or playing.

A quote from Chapter 16: So often we blame good old “arther” (arthritis) for our aches and pains in the extremities when really it is merely ligament tightness, poor blood supply to the muscles, and lack of range of motion!

So don’t give up because you feel stiff and achy — get out and stretch and exercise and you may be amazed at how your “arthritis” disappears!

There will be a minimum of 24 chapters, 16 chapters released so far. Special introductory offer, you can purchase the whole book for US$22 (or Euro equivalent) and be sent each chapter by e-mail as it is released.

For more information, and to purchase: John Bonica
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