Accordion USA
home articles organizations
Search on site


Yellow Pages Events

U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Feb-2013
Previous News | Past News Index | Next News

Titano Accordion Company


Editor's Note:
Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA
2013 Coupe Mondiale Rules and Regulations Online
Victoria Accordion Festival 2013 Rules Online Now
AAA Open Meeting on March 17 in Whippany, NJ
Gary Dahl Music eBooks Now Released - USA
AAMS Honors Beverly Roberts Curnow/ Workshop Schedules
First USA Roland V Accordion Orchestra Scheduled for April Premier Performance
Paul Belanich to Perform at the LIAA on Feb. 6
11th Annual Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund Event on April 21
AAA Coupe Mondiale Qualifying Competitions on March 16

Voci Armoniche

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

Accordion Orchestra Concert in Arizona on Feb. 17
Stas Venglevski and Misha Litvin Perform in Vero Beach, Florida
Eric Stern and Vagabond Opera
'Play Your Accordion Without Pain', New Chapter Released - USA
National Accordion Trade Show in Texas March 7-9
Dr.William Schimmel – Tradition and Innovation in Tandem
Rob Reich in February Performances
Amazing Accordion Kings visit the Long Island Accordion Alliance

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Future events

2013 AAA Master class and Concert Series July 26-28 in NYC
The Main Squeeze Orchestra in Valentine's Day Show
Paul Chamberlain on Concert Tour

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



Editor's Note:

by Rita Barnea
Editor Rita DavidsonWelcome to the February 2013 USA news. It is a new year and it will be a busy year of exciting accordion activities.

First of all, the 66th Coupe Mondiale will be held this summer in Victoria, BC. It is a wonderful opportunity for you to combine the love of the accordion and travel to a beautiful part of the world, right near us!

Do not forget to watch the 55th Annual Grammy Awards which will take place Feb. 10, 2013 at Los Angeles' Staples Center. Like the nominations, CBS will broadcast the awards show. According to the Grammys, the award telecast brought in 39.9 million viewers last year -- the largest TV audience since 1984. The Twitterverse counted 160,341 tweets per minute during the broadcast.

Let's see if Mumford & Sons and Hunter Hayes bring honor to the accordion with a Grammy Award. See more information in the January 2013 USA news.

More news about festivals and competitions will be in the March news.

Accordion CD's are a wonderful Valentine's Day gift for your special accordionist! Check for ideas.

As always, I welcome your comments. Please send to me at

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

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

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

2013 Coupe Mondiale Rules and Regulations Online

by Harley Jones
Coupe Mondiale
Coupe Mondiale LogoThe Rules and Regulations for the 2013 Coupe Mondiale Competition and Festival being held in Victoria, BC, Canada from August 17th to 25th 2013 are now online on the Coupe Mondiale website.

There are 8 competition categories:
- 65th Coupe Mondiale
- Masters Coupe Mondiale
- Junior Coupe Mondiale
- International Virtuoso Entertainment
- Junior International Virtuoso Entertainment
- International Competition for Ensemble Music
- International Competiton for Digital Accordion
- Best New Original Work (classical)

The 2013 Coupe Mondiale is being hosted by the BC Accordion Society and President Aleksandar Milojevic writes: "This will only be the second time ever that the Coupe Mondiale has been held on Canadian soil (Toronto in 1964) and the BC Accordion Society is very excited to promote the Coupe Mondiale in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, Victoria, B.C."

A feature of the event is the large prize budget with over $50,000 Canadian dollars in prizes and awards. For the first time at the Coupe Mondiale there will be five prizes awarded in each category with additional money prize for the Best New Work.

A pre-Coupe Mondiale event is the exciting World Competition of Accordion Orchestras and the rules for this are also on the Coupe Mondiale website. 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes are Roland V-Accordions.

CIA President, Raymond Bodell looks forward to welcoming you to the 66th Coupe Mondiale and the 130th CIA International General Assembly of Delegates Congress in Victoria, Canada.

Full competition and festival information is on the Coupe Mondiale website.

Titano Accordion Company

Victoria Accordion Festival 2013 Rules Online Now

by Rita Barnea
Victoria Accordion LogoThe 2013 Victoria Accordion Festival will be held in Victoria, BC onAugust 16th and 17th, 2013 just before the start of the 66th Coupe Mondiale.

Download the Rules and Regulations and prize money information for the solo and orchestra categories at: 2013Victoria

For further information: E-mail:

Voci Armoniche

AAA Open Meeting on March 17 in Whippany, NJ

by Linda Soley Reed, AAA Second Vice President
AAA Historic Exhibit
AAA President Linda Soley ReedAAA Founding FathersThe AAA Open Meeting takes place on Sunday, March 17, 2013 at 2:PM at the Hanover Marriott, 1401 Rout 10 East, Whippany, New Jersey. This important and informative event takes place immediately following the AAMS Awards Ceremony. All are welcome. Free admission. Refreshments will be served.

At this time, AAA Historian, Joan Grauman will present a lively demonstration of "Nine Decades of the Accordion in the Media.” Joan will present little known facts about the early founders of the AAA, their important contributions and unique input into the development of the piano accordion as we know it today. Above: Photo of part of exhibit
Right: AAA Founding Fathers.
Left: AAA President Linda Soley Reed

Reflections: 75 Years of Accordion History
On March 9, 1938, twelve distinguished accordionists and colleagues convened to determine whether or not an association for accordionists should be formed. The meeting was presided over by Sam Roland and included Charles Magnante, Abe Goldman, Joe Biviano, Pietro Deiro, Pietro Frosini, Gene Von Hallberg, Anthony Galla-Rini, Charles Nunzio, Sydney B. Dawson, Sam Roland and Byron Streep (absent from meeting was John Gart). Upon motion made and seconded, the above-named, including John Gart, formed the charter membership and decided that the name of this association was to be The American Accordionists’ Association. See photo.

So much accordion history has been made since that meeting in 1938! Competitions were organized. Carnegie Hall Concerts featured top accordionists of the day. Composers were commissioned to expand the accordionists’ library. Colleges and Universities opened their doors to accordionists as music majors.

How many of you remember those competitions at Peter Stuyvesant High School and Charles Evans Hughes High School both in New York City? Or how about those concerts at Carnegie Hall with capacity crowds? Or looking at some of the early commissioned works and being excited over trying them for the first time? Or having the thrill of being accepted into a college music program and auditioning on your accordion?

We invite you to share your memories of AAA events through the years to be included in the AAA’s 75th Anniversary publication: “Reflections: 75 Years of Accordion History.”

Please e-mail copy as a word document or within an e-mail as well as jpeg photos to or via US mail to: M. Kendrick, 120 Valley View Road, Stratford, CT 06615. If you wish to have photographs returned, please include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Photographs will be scanned and returned promptly.

Updated information regarding the 75th AAA Festival to be held at the New Yorker Hotel, August 14-18th in New York City will be available at the Open Meeting.

We look forward to seeing you on Sunday, March 17.

For further information e-mail:

Accordion Jazz Chords

Gary Dahl Music eBooks Now Released - USA

by Harley Jones
Gary Dahl eBooks
Gary DahlOne of the most popular arrangers of music for the accordion is Gary Dahl of Puyallup, Washington State.

Following on the big success of the Gary Dahl graded specials series of eSheet music (able to be sent to you by email), Gary Dahl has now released three Music eBooks.

Cat No: DH01 Collection #1 Latin Spectacular - 10 titles, Besame Mucho, Amapola, Tico Tico, Brazil, Beyond the Sea, El Cumbanchero, Adios Muchachos, Spanish Eyes, A Day in the Life of a Fool, Amour, over 26 pages of high quality arrangements for only US$24.95 or Euro equivalent.

Cat No: DH02 Collection #2 Favorite French Standards - 10 titles, La Vie en Rose, Les Bicyclettes de Belsize, Moulin Rouge, Clair de Lune, Pigalle, Domino, Michelle, Padam Padam, Under Paris Skies, The River Seine, 32 pages of high quality arrangements for only US$24.95 or Euro equivalent.

Cat No: DH03 Collection #3 The American Songbook - 10 titles, Tenderly, Angel Eyes, Misty, September Song, Moon River, Summertime, Sentimental Journey, Crazy, The Godfather, Autumn Leaves, over 32 pages of music for only US$24.95 or Euro equivalent.

You can view sample pages of the music online (DH01, DH02, DH03) and order from the shopping basket which links to the high security eCommerce site run by, one of the world's largest internet payment processing systems.

There are nearly 200 arrangements on the website of: Gary Dahl.


AAMS Honors Beverly Roberts Curnow/ Workshop Schedules

by Rita Barnea
AAMS Poster
Beverly Roberts Curnow will be the 2013 Guest of Honor at the American Accordion Musicological Society event which will hold its 3 day annual Festival of Workshops, from March 15 to 17, 2013 at the Hanover Marriott, 1401 Route 10 East, Whippany, NJ.

A very special Banquet and Concert will be held on Saturday March 16, 2013 honoring Beverly Roberts Curnow, a student of Carmen Carrozza and winner of the 1965 AAA national competition and the Confederation of International Accordionists Competition in Valletta, Malta (the first female contestant to do so). She holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Music Education from New York University and Columbia University. Following graduation, she taught choral, instrumental, and general music at all levels in the Wilson Area public school system of Easton. Pennsylvania for thirty-five years.

Remaining an active accordionist throughout her teaching career, she continues to make many guest artist and concert appearances for the American Accordionists’ Association. She also plays in pit orchestras for Broadway musicals and shows, and performs as soloist with the Allentown (Pennsylvania) Band. In 2008, she presented the world premiere of Samuel Adler’s “Canto XVIII at the AAA 70th Anniversary Concert in Valhalla, New York. She presently serves as a member of the AAA Governing Board, and in that capacity, is a member of the Composers Commissioning Committee.

Workshops will be held all 3 days of the festival. 2013 Accordion Workshops:
Friday, March 15"
6 PM: Suzy and Sam Andrews…"The Colors of Music"
7:15 PM: Bernie Gardzalla…"Bass Bonanza"
8:30 PM…Jim Vandelly…"Try the Bayan and learn the triple shake"

Saturday, March 16th:
9:AM…..Dr. Marion Jacobson… Author of "Squeeze This"
10:15…..Bruce Gassman…"Classical Music and Classic Rock- Perfect Together"
11:30 AM… Dean Ratzin & Bob Lijana…"Life and Times of Pietro Deiro"
1:00 PM...Mary Tokarski..."Growing Up with the Greats"
215 PM...Joan Grauman..."Playing Ethnic Music"
3:30 PM ...Lenn Feldmann " How to Make a V Accordion Sing"

Sunday, March 17
9:AM… Dallas Vietty…"Swing Music & Gypsy Jazz"
10:AM…Silvia Eberly…"Learn to Play the Styrische & Handharmonika"
11:00 AM...Frank Hodnicki...."Multi Polka Styles"
Noon: Rocco Jerry…"New Accordion plus Cello Music by Max Simoncic"
1:PM… Alex Chudolij…Music Magic Accordions USA "Expansion through MIDI"
2:PM...All AAMS attendees are invited to attend the AAA Presentation by Joan Grauman

Presented in conjunction with the Mid Atlantic Music Teachers Guild
Workshops and times are subject to change.

For more information: 856-854-6628

Please stay after the festival awards program for the AAA Open Meeting at 2 PM on Sunday, March 17th that will feature an exciting workshop given by AAA Historian Joan Grauman. See description in the AAA article on the open meeting, in this issue. The open meeting is free, all are welcome, refreshments will be served.

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

First USA Roland V Accordion Orchestra Scheduled for April Premier Performance

by Sam and Peggy Falcetti
First USA Roland V Accordion Orchestra
On January 20, 2013, the first rehearsal of the newly formed USA Roland V Accordion Orchestra was held in the performance hall of Falcetti Music in Springfield, MA.

At that time, no one really knew what to expect including the orchestra’s conductor, Sam Falcetti who kept saying that his dream is becoming a reality. From the first selection, “Stars & Stripes Forever” with the blending of flutes, clarinets, trumpets, saxes and baritone horns, it was truly the sound of a marching band. Even the wonderful piccolo counter melody on the last section, (usually performed with the piccolo reed sound of the accordion), had the true piccolo sound.

Next, the orchestra rehearsed the “Godfather Medley” and employed the beautiful French musette accordion sound blending with clarinets, counter melodies with mandolin and accompanied by strings and vibes. The “Godfather” doesn’t get any better than this, especially when the vocalists are singing in Italian.

Everyone was very excited about doing a Duke Ellington big band arrangement by John Franceschina. This arrangement is divided into sax, trumpet, and trombone sections, backed by a great rhythm section and vocalists. Last but not least, the orchestra rehearsed “Quartet in D” by Haydn. Everyone was amazed by the violin, viola, and cello sections sounding just like a string orchestra.

The Roland V Accordion Orchestra is comprised of students, accordion hobbyists, and a few semi-pro players from Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. This first rehearsal taught everyone
how versatile the Roland V Accordion is by simulating the bowing of the violin, the changing of the embouchure on woodwind and brass instruments using the velocity of the bellows, the touch sensitivity of the mallet percussion keyboard and the plucked string instruments.

The Orchestra will have their premier performance in the Festival Band category at the New England Music’s 51st Festival at the Newton Marriott in Newton, Massachusetts on Sunday, April 7, 2013.

For further information:

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Paul Belanich to Perform at the LIAA on Feb. 6

by Rita Barnea
Paul BelanichThe Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) sponsored by La Villini Restaurant will present an evening of accordion music with featured guest artist, Paul Belanich on Wednesday, February 6, 2013 at 6:30 PM.

Paul Belanich began his accordion studies at age 5. Born on St. Peter's Island (Ilovik) the northern part of the Croatian Adriatic Sea, where the accordion is the center of entertainment, he started playing his father's diatonic button accordion as his father did and both of his uncles.

Presently Paul performs with his brother in the Tri State area. He entertains in Slovenian and Austrian polka styles with a blend of Valtaro Musette flavor which he grew up with. Performing and playing mostly by ear, he recently recorded some of his music which consists of different rhythms other than polka and waltzes. Paul also sings in English, Croatian and Italian. Paul always says, "What fires me up the most and gives my heart the happiest feeling, is the polka music itself. Playing accordion since the early 60's, my love for the accordion is the same today as it was back then. I just hope that one day the American public realizes how beautiful the accordion is as a musical instrument. "

You are welcome to La Villini Restaurant, 288 Larkfield Road, East Northport, NY. Reservations are recommended. Please call: 631-261-6344

Emilio Magnotta will be the LIAA featured guest artist on March 5, 2013.

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

11th Annual Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund Event on April 21

by Rita Barnea
Carmen Carrozza Fund Poster
The American Accordionists' Association proudly presents the 11th Annual Afternoon of Music, Food and Fun on Sunday, April 21, 2013 from 12 Noon until 5:PM at the Villa Barone Hilltop Manor, 466 US 6, Mahopac, NY to benefit The Carmen Carrozza Scholarship Fund for the advancement of promising young accordionists.

Chairman of the program, Dr. Joseph Ciccone, announces the following performers on the program: Mario Tacca and Mary Mancini, Frank Toscano, Manny Corallo, Mary Tokarski, Frank Carrozza, Ray Oreggia & Dominic Karcic, Berverly Roberts Curnow, Emilio Magnotta, the Connecticut Accordion Orchestra, Linda Soley Reed, Conductor and many more performers to be announce in future news articles.

Download the Booking Form: 2013Carrozza
Please respond on or before April 1, 2013. Be part of this amazing accordion afternoon. Arrange a table for you and your friends.f

For further information: Dr. Joseph Ciccone, 914-238-0041

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

AAA Coupe Mondiale Qualifying Competitions on March 16

by Rita Barnea
AAA LogoIn a break from tradition, the American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Coupe Mondiale qualifying competitions will not be held during their annual August festival.

For 2013, the Coupe Mondiale qualifying competitions will be held on March 16, 2013 at the Hanover Marriott in Whippany, NJ.

Because the Coupe Mondiale will be held in Victoria, BC just a few days after the AAA Festival in August, the AAA has arranged to host the qualifying events during the MAMTG Festival in March giving candidates sufficient time to prepare for the Coupe Mondiale in August.

Attachment for rules and category information: 2013AAA_Coupe.pdf

Plans are moving forward for the 75th Anniversary in New York City, August 14-18, 2013 at The New Yorker Hotel. For reservations: 1-800-764-4680 - call between 8-5 EST for best results. Please mention American Accordionists' Association and NOT AAA . Reduced room rates are $179 per night.

For additional information: contact the AAA office at OR Mary Tokarski for individual category entry forms –
or call 203-484-5095. Address: 15 Maplewood Lane, Northford, CT 06472.

Titano Accordion Company

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

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

Accordion Orchestra Concert in Arizona on Feb. 17

by Rita Barnea
MAE Accordion Event in Arizona
The Arizona Golf Resort in Mesa, Arizona, will be the site for the 7th annual concert of the Mesa Accordion Event (formerly Frank Marocco Accordion Event) Orchestra. The concert will take place on Sunday, February 17 at 7:00 pm. This year’s event brings together over 50 accordionists from around the US, Canada and Italy, ranging in age from early teens to the late eighties.

Activities that take place during this annual four-day event include intensive daily rehearsals, workshops, and evening activities, such as solo and group performances and jam sessions. The Music Director and conductor of the orchestra is world renowned bayanist, Stas Venglevski.

The annual concert has become a favorite among residents from all over the Phoenix area and draws an audience of over 400. This year’s orchestral selections include arrangements by Frank Marocco, Joan Cochran Sommers, Stas Venglevski, and others. The concert will be dedicated to the memory of Frank Marocco, the founder of the event.

For information about next year’s event, which will honor Joan Sommers, please contact event directors, Dan & Joan Grauman at

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

Stas Venglevski and Misha Litvin Perform in Vero Beach, Florida

by Joan Grauman Morse, AAA Historian
Photo caption: (l to r) Misha Litvin, Joan Grauman, Stas Venglevski, Brigitte Valenti
Stas Venglevski and Misha LitvinMy husband Dan and I love Southwest Airlines! While visiting relatives in Florida a few weeks ago, we received a call from Stas. “Misha and I will be performing in Florida next week”, he said. We found out where and when and told Stas how sorry we were that we could not be there. Then, we promptly changed our tickets to stay an extra day (you can do this free through Southwest) to surprise Stas and Misha and attend this concert. We also went right to work contacting all of our friends who have relocated close to Vero Beach and, before we knew it, several “accordion groupies” were joining us.

Photo caption: (l to r) Misha Litvin, Joan Grauman, Stas Venglevski, Brigitte Valenti

Stas and Misha are favorites of ours. We see their performances regularly so, not only was our appearance a pleasant surprise for them, their superb concert filled with new pieces (and new jokes) was a delightful surprise for us. The two greats on bayan and domra created an arrangement of the timeless favorite “Monti’s Czardas” that incorporated a little jazz, their signature playfulness, some “Frosini” touches, a hint of bluegrass and skillful velocity that only Stas and Misha can produce. The audience was in awe of their talents. “Insane Polka”, by (in the words of Stas) “unknown composer, Stas Venglevski”, had the audience roaring with laughter as the two men pulled off this wonderful polka with a “surprise, super difficult” solo part.

Mary Pautz-Klotshe arranged this concert as a fundraiser for her foundation, which she created to honor her now deceased first husband, the “Richard R. Pautz Lifelong Learning Foundation”. For years, Mary has organized concerts to benefit charities that help with educational needs. Mary pays all expenses and then donates 100% of the proceeds to charities. Mary met Stas and Misha years ago when she was teaching at the University of Wisconsin and felt that they were just perfect for this Vero Beach concert that would benefit “Haiti Partners”, an organization that has assisted in building schools in Haiti. Mary said, “These two men are the best in their fields! They love to banter. They are just so engaging!”

So true!

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Eric Stern and Vagabond Opera

by Rita Barnea
Vagabond Opera
Eric SternVagabond Opera is a group which embraces many styles: European Cabaret! Vintage Americana! Balkan Belly Dance! Neo-Classical Opera! Old World Yiddish Theater! The six-piece, Portland, Oregon-based Vagabond Opera is a major force in the cabaret style.

Bohemian Cabaret ensemble Vagabond Opera is described by the Washington Post as “A band of ceaseless charisma, boundless energy, impeccable musicianship and more than a little touch of both the naughty and exotic.” The group delivers passionate offerings of Bohemian cabaret for young and old. Paris hot jazz, gut bucket swing, tangos, Ukrainian folk-punk ballads, klezmer and vigorous originals meet a world of riverboat gambling queens, Turkish belly dancers, and the enigmatic Marlene Dietrich.

Weaving elements of Kurt Weil, Duke Ellington and Edith Piaf with absurdist flair, theatrics and an old world mood, Vagabond Opera presents the new wave of opera–lusty voices singing in 13 languages and presenting a cabaret of rich musical phrasing, sparkling lyrics and indomitable stage presence, all played with exuberance, skill and a gritty Vagabond edge.

The band’s lineup features four vocalists, including trained operatic tenor and soprano vocals, accordion, tenor saxophone, clarinet, two cellos, stand-up bass, and drums. Guest performers and dancers often appear with the ensemble.

Vagabond Opera is at the vanguard of a growing popularity in the Neo-cabaret phenomenon, and through their theatrical performances, lyrics in 13 languages, and an eclectic repertoire, they liberate opera from its usual construct, expanding musical and theatrical biodiversity. Vagabond Opera has performed all over the USA and in Europe.

They have been featured on NPR, in the Washington Post and Jazziz Magazine, and have shared stages and players with such acclaimed acts as Pink Martini, Devotchka, The Decembrists, Balkan Beat Box, Al Franken, and the Oregon Symphony. Vagabond opera has four full-length albums

Vagabond Opera was created in 2002 by European-trained opera singer and composer Eric Stern. Then disillusioned with the classical opera world, Stern created a new context for opera: Performance on a more intimate scale incorporating not only opera but elements of Weimar Cabaret, Arabic and Balkan forms, and the original music that springs from the ensemble’s fertile creative work. This is not your granny’s opera, but a visceral artistic ensemble that features powerful instrumental and vocal performances coupled with a highly eclectic and theatrical experience.

Members of Vagabond Opera are:
Eric Stern, Jason Flores, As his Grzesik, Mark Burdon, Robin Jackson, Skip VonKuske, Dr. Xander Grrymander, Ursula Knudson

Eric Stern has appeared on NPR and performed at the Kennedy Center,The Great American Music Hall, Joe’s Pub in NYC in San Francisco, throughout the Northwest, and internationally from Portland to Paris to Poland.
Eric Stern is best known for being the founder and artistic director of Vagabond Opera, an ensemble that has achieved worldwide success. Vagabond Opera was created in 2002 by U.S. and European-trained opera singer and composer Eric Stern. Then disillusioned with the classical opera world, Stern created a new context for opera: Performance on a more intimate scale incorporating not only opera but elements of Weimar Cabaret, Arabic and Balkan forms, and the original music that springs from the ensemble’s fertile creative work.
Eric Stern is an active and prolific composer writing and arranging for the Vagabond Opera ensemble and other projects. In Portland he was commisioned in 2007 to compose the music for Tears Of Joy Puppet Theatre production of Pinocchio and most recently composed the full-length opera “Queen of Knives” which premiered in Portland.

Stern grew up wandering the aisles of The Wooden Shoe Books and Records (an anarchist collective bookstore that his parents helped found) listening to every record he could get his hands on, then went on to formal training in piano and opera.

He studied and performed opera in Philadelphia, New York and Paris and founded the Jewish Theater Project in New Mexico with Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, where he helped produce Neshama, a Jewish arts festival. Eric Stern was the musical director for the show, writing several short musical pieces, one of the plays, and one full-length composition as well.

Prior to that, in the summer of 2000, he toured Canada where he, along with Mark Chavez and Shenoah Allen, performed Sabotage, a comedic tour-de-force that the trio wrote, to audiences in Albuquerque, New York City, Toronto, Winnipeg, Saskatoon, and Edmonton, garnering major critical acclaim. Stern composed and performed the music for Sabotage.

A fine opera singer, Eric Stern has appeared in over thirty operas, including lead roles in La Boheme (Schaunard), Die Fledermaus (Dr. Falke), Gianni Schicchi (Gerardo), Carmen (El Dancairo) and the American Premiere of The Beggar’s Opera (Ben Lockitt). Eric is fluent in Jazz, Klezmer, Classical and Middle-Eastern idioms and his work has been enjoyed internationally

In the last several years he has studied the arabic and turkish repertoire receiving instruction from Souhail Kaspar (as well as performing onstage with the master percussionist), Omar Faruk Tekbilek, Elias and George Lammam and Souren Baronian which in turn led him to co-create The Flying Bokhara Orlestrah and to found Hazz Hazz Hulu.

He is passionate about Bulgarian accordion and has studied with Milen Slavov and Kalin Kirilov.
He has also returned to his Jewish roots and is a passionate lover and advocate of the Yiddish Language.
Stern is fluent in a variety of genres from jazz piano to Balkan accordion, to Opera. His compositions reflect his scope. Recently Stern was commissioned to compose for Portland’s own Tears Of Joy Theater production of “Pinocchio”.

Eric Stern appears on the Decemberist’s album Her Majesty and also performs as a soloist or with the Eric Stern Trio.Vagabond Opera's latest CD is "Sing for Your Lives". The CD includes Eastern European folk theater, classical grandeur, hot club act, and avant-garde Klezmer jams.Other CD's include: "Get on the Train", "Vagabond Opera", "The Zeitgeist Beckons".

Vagabond Opera's performance schedule includes:
Feb. 2nd at 8:PM…Vagabond Opera in Traverse City, MI
Feb. 5th at 8:PM…Vagabond Opera Takes OH-IO in Marletta, Ohio
Feb. 6th at 8:PM…Vagabond Returns to Virginia, Barns of Rose Hill
Feb. 7th at 8:PM… They Abbey Bar at Appalachian Brewing Co, Harrisburg, PA>
Feb. 8th at 8:PM… Mauch Chunck Opera House, Jim Torpe, PA.
Feb 9th at 8:PM First Vermont Show..Vermont Arts Exchange-Basement Music Store
March 7th at 8:PM… The Oriental Theater, Denver, CO
March 14th at 8:PM… The Historic Sheridan Opera House, Telluride, CO
March 15th at 8:PM… Crested Butte Center for the Arts, CO
March 16th at 8:PM…Stargazers Theater and Event Center, Colorado Springs, CO.
March 18th at 8:PM… The State Room, Salt Lake City, UT
March 22 at 8:PM PC3-Performing Arts Center, Cabondale, CO


For USA and Canada Booking:

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

'Play Your Accordion Without Pain', New Chapter Released - USA

by Harley Jones
'Play Your Accordion Without Pain' cover
John Bonica PT CMP NZRPThis is an ebook (able to be emailed to you, Acrobat pdf format). John Bonica PT CMP NZRP has released the 2nd Chapter of his book 'Play Your Accordion Without Pain'. The chapter is titled: 'Learning to Read Your Body's Signals'

This exciting ebook will be published chapter by chapter, at least one chapter per month. There will be a minimum of 24 chapters. As a special introductory offer, you can purchase the whole book for US$22 (or Euro equivalent) and be sent each chapter by email as it is released.

John Bonica writes: "This book is exclusively for accordionists, written by an accordionist, about accordion related problems and injuries, based on 50 years of professional clinical experience."

Further information at: John Bonica

Titano Accordion Company

National Accordion Trade Show in Texas March 7-9

by Rita Barnea
NAA Logo
Attention: Accordion Manufacturers, Distributors, Dealers, and Service Centers

The National Accordion Association (NAA) will host its annual Accordion Convention and Trade show on March 7, 8, and 9, 2013. at the Westin Park Central Hotel in Dallas, Texas. Representatives from manufacturers, distributors, dealers, and service centers are encouraged to make early plans to participate in this popular festival. The Texas event is one of the top accordion shows in the United States. Over 200 accordion enthusiasts are expected to visit the trade show area in 2013. The Texas Convention is known for being a highly successful way of promoting both Dealers & Accordion sales. This is your opportunity to have numerous accordion enthusiasts see/feel/test/your products and musical accessories. It is also an excellent opportunity to market your non-instrument items (accessories/ recordings/ etc.).

There are several ways for accordion professionals to participate in the National Accordion Trade Show:

1. Exclusive display room (first-come basis). There are several private showcase rooms available which are perfect for displays and product demonstrations ranging rom 461 to 666 square feet in size. Special 2013 package pricing includes dealer showcase room for the weekend, plus hotel stay (up to 2 people) free deluxe daily breakfast (up to 2 people), and one Saturday night banquet. Prices are $700 (2 nights), $750 (3 nights), and $840 (4 nights). These showcase suites are very limited ... first come-first-serve basis!

2. General display area. The large general (shared) display area allows exhibitors up to 2 (hotel-provided) tables to market products and services. Product/service demonstrations are encouraged in this shared area at a level that does not disrupt commerce of other participants .. Special 2013 package pricing includes dealer showcase room for the weekend, plus hotel stay (up to 2 people) free deluxe daily breakfast (up to 2 people), and one Saturday night banquet. Prices are $431 (2 nights), $536 (3 nights), and $641 (4 nights). A-la-cart/daily price without rooms/meals is $150.

3. Advertising in the program/souvenir booklet. All convention attendees receive a program booklet, and refer to it frequently throughout the convention. Advertising in this book is highly recommended. A full page print ad in this book is only $100. Halfpage ads are $50. Quarter page ads are $25.

4. Advertising/Sponsorship on the official NAA Web site. Sponsorship is available immediately on the web- based site Only $50 will highlight your business as an official Convention sponsor. Organizations not attending the convention can place advertisement on the web for $100. Advertisements will be displayed until January 1,2014.

It is recommended that you participate in this top-rated event by exhibiting your products, advertising in our souvenir program, and on our web page.

Some trade show manufacturers bring or sponsor skilled accordionists as product demonstrators. Expectations of dealer-sponsored demonstrators performing at the Saturday night formal stage concert is subject to several factors including: available stage slots; timeliness of request (first-come basis); committee approval. Book soon!

Contact Greg Klugiewicz (2013 Convention Manager) immediately. 214-538-5651 or

For information or assistance:
Nick Ballarini
Dealer Manufacturer Show Manager
National Accordion Association

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Dr.William Schimmel – Tradition and Innovation in Tandem

by Rita Barnea
Dr. William SchimmelDr.William Schimmel has had a busy winter season. His website: is the recent recipient of a PWA – Popular Website Award – given to innovative sites that promote new ideas and marketing.

AAA Board member, Dr.Schimmel appeared at Town Hall in New York with Cabaret Star Mark Nadler and violinist Christine Kwak in a performance of "I'm a Stranger Her Myself", which was awarded a New York Nightlife Award, an award given to excellence in Cabaret concept and performance. He also premiered his new solo work, "Paganito" at the New Jersey Music Teachers' Conference in New Jersey where he was also the guest speaker.

His schedule for February is as follows:

Feb 5 – "I'm a Stranger Here Myself" – recording – with Mark Nadler and Christine Kwak – Philadelphia, Pa
Feb 7 –" Modernworks" – University of Maryland at Baltimore County
Feb 15 – 23 – "Powder her Face" – Thomas Ades – New York City Opera – Brooklyn Academy of Music
Feb 19 – New York Festival of Song – Merkin Hall – New York
Feb 21 – New York Festival of Song – University of Maryland

For further information:

Rob Reich in February Performances

by Rita Barnea
Rob Reich Trio
Rob Reich is a well known accordionist, pianist, and composer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. A talented instrumentalist and an inventive composer, and solo performer, Rob can be heard playing with many top notch ensembles. He is a member of Tin Hat, Gaucho and The Nice Guy Trio, and freelances with many other Bay Area bands.

Rob graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Composition from Oberlin Conservatory. As a composer, Rob has strong fundamentals; stylistic breadth; and an original, irreverent voice. Rob is composer / music director for Circus Bella, and in 2011 released a Kickstarter-funded CD of original music for a 10-piece band.

In 2010, Rob was commissioned by the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival to compose "Sidewalks and Alleys", performed and recorded on this CD by the Nice Guy Trio and an all-star string quartet. Rob has written music for various collaborative projects ranging a sexy double trapeze act, the score to a beautiful dance film noir, to a silly song about shoes.

His February performance schedule includes:
Feb 1: Rob Reich Piano Trio, Divino Osteria, Sausalito. He will be joined by Beth Goodfellow (drums) and Ari Munkres (bass)
Feb. 3: Kally Price Band, Amnesia, San Francisco
Feb. 5: Gaucho, Berkely City Club
Feb. 6: Rob Reich accordion trio, The Page Bar, San Francisco
Feb. 6: Gaucho, Amnesia, San Francisco
Feb. 7: Gaucho, Yoshi's, Oakland
Feb. 8: Rob Reich Trio, Off the Grid, San Francisco
Feb. 11: Rob Reich (solo accordion), Divine Cafe, San Francisco
Feb. 12: Kally Price and Rob Reich duet, Blush Wine Bar, San Francisco
Feb. 13: Gaucho, Amnesia, San Francisco
Feb. 15: Nice Guy Trio, Off the Grid, SF
Feb. 15: Gaucho, Rose Pistola, SF
Feb. 19: Blush Wine Bar
Feb. 20: Gaucho, Amnesia, SF
Feb. 21: Gaucho, Tartine Bakery, San Francisco
Feb. 24: Klezmer Brunce, Porto Franco Art Parlor with Ben Goldberg (clarinet) David Chernyavsky (violin) Darren Johnston (trumpet) Daniel Fabricant (bass) and Rob (accordion/ piano).  
Feb. 24: Rob Reich, Divine Cafe, SF
Feb. 26: Kally Price and Rob Reich duet, Blush Wine Bar, SF
Feb. 27: Gaucho, Amnesia, SF.

For further information:

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

Amazing Accordion Kings visit the Long Island Accordion Alliance

by Dominic Karcic
The Long Island Accordion Alliance’s (LIAA) very first meeting of the New Year took place on Wednesday, January 2, 2013 at La Villini Restaurant in East Northport, NY. If the success of this event is an omen for things to come then it looks like 2013 will be a very successful one for the accordion on Long Island.

The event was sold out several days prior (SRO) and not only was the main dinning area “jammed like sardines” but also the two adjacent dinning areas were occupied by our “overflow patrons.” This was a first time in two and one half years that that has ever occurred.

In attendance with the many accordion music lovers and aficionados were many prominent names from our accordion community. These included Mario Tacca, Mary Mancini, Don Gerundo, Victor Prieto, John Perno and Joe DeClemente. The evening’s interest and excitement was due to the fact that the “Amazing Accordion Kings” were on the docket to perform.

The “Amazing Accordion Kings” - Frank Toscano, Manny Corallo and the legendary Angelo DiPippo - did not disappoint. Since combining their talents several years ago these three master virtuoso accordionists have elevated ensemble accordion playing to the highest plateau. Through their very fine musicianship, virtuoso technique, flawless execution, very stylish playing and unique three part arrangements they have created a signature “Amazing Accordion Kings Sound.” Some of their selections included “Hungarian Dance #5,” “Twilight Time,” “St. Louis Blues,” and “Tico Tico.”

The membership of the Long Island Accordion Alliance’s (LIAA) want to thank all the people that attended that evening and want to especially express their sincerest thanks to Angelo DiPippo, Frank Toscano and Manny Corallo for what their presence represented and what a tremendous contribution they made to what the our organization (LIAA) is trying to foster and achieve.

For those of you that didn’t attend, you’ll have your chance to experience the “Amazing Accordion Kings” at the Dix Hills Performing Arts Center (631.424.700), 305 North Service Road, Dix Hills, NY 11746 on Sunday, February 17th, 2013 at 2:PM.

The Long Island Accordion Alliance’s (LIAA) next meeting will take place on Wednesday, February 6th at La Villini Restaurant (631.261.6344) 288 Larkfield Road, East Northport, NY 11731 and the featured guest artist will be Croatian accordionist Paul (Paolo) Belanich. Reservations are highly recommended.

Please come out and support the accordion, accordion music and accordion artists.

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

Future events

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

2013 AAA Master class and Concert Series July 26-28 in NYC

by Rita Barnea
The Accordion is 3D, No Glasses Required

The American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Master Class and Concert Series celebrate its 19th season on July 26, 27 and 28 at Tenri Cultural Institute,43A West 13th Street, in New York. Master classes are at 3:PM. Concerts at 7:PM. The title of the Seminars is "The Accordion is 3D-No Glasses Required". The moderator/curator, Dr. William Schimmel projects that it will be the best one yet: intriguing workshops, stellar performances and, most of all, a collegial attitude in its presentation.

Master Classes are at 3:PM. Concerts take place at 7:PM. $20/master class; $25/concert; $40/day includes master class and concert. Or $110/weekend.

Participants come from the local New York area, across the United States as well as China, Japan, Argentina, Croatia and Norway. Guest artists during the weekend include Dr. Schimmel, Dr.Robert Young McMahan, Erica Mancini, Peter Flint, John Foti, Dr. Hugo Goldenzweig, Micki Goodman presenting a new video work, Doug Makofka, Ken Laufer, Paul Stein, Ingrid Kvale, Martina Li, Mayumi Mayaota, Corn Mo, Mary Tokarski, Will Holshouser, Bob Goldberg and The Famous Accordion Orchestra, David Stoler, Art Bailey, Brian Dewan, Melissa Elledge plus more.

For reservations and information:
212-876-0827 (office)
917-498-6823 (cell)

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

The Main Squeeze Orchestra in Valentine's Day Show

by Rita Barnea
Walter KuhrThe Main Squeeze Accordion Orchestra will present a Valentine's Day Show on Friday, February 15, 6:30 PM at Le Poisson Rouge, 158 Bleecher Street, NYC.

Main Squeeze Orchestra’s Valentine’s Day show involves tales of true love and epilepsy, songs from The Beach Boys, Edith Piaf, Lady Gaga, Kurt Weill, Elvis and more, and fourteen ladies — all playing accordion. A unique and lively evening for $15 Cover

Walter Kühr is the founder of The Main SqueezeOrchestra as well as the owner of Main Squeeze, a Lower East Side boutique “For All Your Accordion Needs” and the center of the accordion community in New York City.

One night, after attending an accordion festival, Kühr dreamt he was the conductor of an all-female accordion orchestra. Not just any all-female accordion orchestra, but an orchestra of unsurpassable quality. The next morning, he began recruiting among his female students. 

Walter began learning the accordion at age 6 from his mother in Germany. He also studied classical music in Frankfurt, and played piano in a jazz quartet, as well as performing polkas and tangos with his accordion in local clubs.In 1988 he received a scholarship to study at Jazzmobile in Harlem. He moved to America and has lived in NYC ever since.

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Paul Chamberlain on Concert Tour

by Rob Howard
Paul ChamberlainEdinburgh-based accordionist Paul Chamberlain has a busy start to 2013 with a series of solo recitals in Scotland, England and California. Beginning in Ripon Cathedral on the 31st of January, Paul will then perform in Bury Parish Church, Dundee Cathedral, Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall (the first accordionist to perform a solo recital at this major and prestigious concert hall), Stockport Accordion Club, and Music@Home in Middleton.

He then will be performing around Northwestern California, starting in Santa Cruz, followed by a recital in San Francisco Cathedral and then a performance at the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento. As 2013 is the 50th Anniversary of the Pink Panther, this concert will feature a project involving live scoring to a number of the short animations which will be shown on screen.

The final concert in the tour is a recital as part of the 10th Anniversary series of the popular Seventh Avenue Concerts in San Francisco’s Seventh Avenue Presbyterian Church.

Tour dates:
January 31st, 1.15pm – Lunchtime Recital, Ripon Cathedral
February 1st, 12.30pm – Lunchtime Recital, Bury Parish Church
February 9th, 1pm - Lunchtime Recital, Dundee Cathedral
February 13th, 1.10pm – Lunchtime Recital, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester
February 13th, 8pm – Stockport Accordion Club, Woodley Methodist Church, Stockport
February 17th, 3.30pm – Solo Recital, Music@Home, Middleton, Manchester
February 21st, 12.10pm - Santa Cruz Public Library, California, USA
February 24th, 3.30pm – Solo Recital, St. Mary’s Cathedral, San Francisco, CA
February 28th, 6.30pm – Evening Concert, Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA
March 2nd, 7.30pm – Solo Recital, Seventh Avenue Concerts, San Francisco, CA

For further information email:

1 CD and original music available at: Paul Chamberlain
© 2022 Accordion USA. All rights reserved. To comment on these pages, e-mail the webmaster.