Accordion USA
home articles organizations
Search on site


Yellow Pages Events

U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Jul-2011
Previous News | Past News Index | Next News

Titano Accordion Company


Editor's Note
LATE NEWS: Mario Mosti Passed Away, Jeannette - PA
Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA
Corey Pesaturo (USA) Wins Primus Ikaalinen 2011 - Finland
2011 AAA Competition/Festival July 13-17 in Charleston, SC
38th Annual Kimberley International Old Time Accordion Championship
5th Annual Victoria Accordion Festival July 14-17 in Canada
2011 Roland V-Accordion Festival July 29th in Orlando
71st ATG Festival in Orlando from July 27-31
K Trio to Perform at AAA Festival on July 15
Dr. Robert Young McMahan and Dr. Paul Cohen to Premiere New Work for Accordion and Saxophone
Alex Meixner to Perform at Roland Festival in Orlando
Eddie Monteiro to Conduct and Perform at AAA Festival
Ocotrillo to Perform at AAA Festival in July
Steve Albini to Perform at Roland US 2011 V-Accordon Festival
Joe Natoli's Performances
Bruce Gassman to Perform at 2011 ATG Festival in Orlando, Florida
AAA Master Class and Concert Series, NYC July 29-31st
Jeff Lisenby to Perform at AAA and ATG Festivals
ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 to Honor Tony Lovello, August 12-13
Alicia Baker's Performances

Voci Armoniche

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

"The Accordion Needs You" Workshop
Frank Marocco Accordion Event -- European Edition, in Spectacular Castelfidardo, Italy
Stas Venglevski Performs Sofia Gubaidulina's "In Croce"
Sam Falcetti To Present Workshop at ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Future events

Gene Van Accordion Orchestra Presents Benefit Concert
Martin Accordion Orchestra on the East Coast in July
2011 Summer Concert Schedule of Rita Davidson
First Wallace Accordion Festival in Idaho, August 11-14
Guy Klucevsek Composes Music for KO Festival
Walter Kasprzyk to Perform in Charleston
Great American Squeeze Off in Detroit, Michigan
Paul Stein at the Seminars
Evan Harlan to be featured at ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011
Brent Buswell to Perform at 2012 ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival
July Meeting for Long Island Accordion Alliance
Will Holshouser to Perform at the AAA Seminars
Jordan Rody, Canadian Accordionist

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



Editor's Note

by Rita Barnea
Rita Davidson, USA EditorWhat do you think of when someone says "July or August"?

Are you thinking of beaches, pools, lakes, baseball?

Well…… you should be thinking:


That is where the real vacation is this summer!

Here is a brief list. Read more about them below in the July USA News:

1. 38th Annual Kimberley International Old Time Accordion Championship, Canada, July 4-9

2. 5th Annual Victoria Accordion Festival, Canada July 14-17

3. AAA Competition/Festival in Charleston, SC. July 13-17

4. ATG Competition and Festival in Orlando, Florida, July 27-31

5. Roland Competition and Festival in Orlando, Florida, July 29th

6. ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 in Nashua, New Hampshire, August 12, 13

7. First Wallace Accordion Festival in Idaho, August 11-14

Now get busy and find one or more accordion festivals to go to! Enjoy! Have fun!

And don't forget to play your accordion all summer!

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

LATE NEWS: Mario Mosti Passed Away, Jeannette - PA

by Harley Jones
Mario Mosti Music
Mario Mosti well known accordionist, composer and accordion music publisher passed away on Wednesday 29 June 2011 in the nursing home he was in for approximately the last two years. He was 87 years of age.

This information was provided by his daughter Kathryn Mosti and a full obituary will be published soon. His publications are available from Deffner Music Publications.

Messages of condolence to the Mosti family can be emailed to:
Pittsburgh Post Gazette Obituary of Mario  Mosti

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

Corey Pesaturo (USA) Wins Primus Ikaalinen 2011 - Finland

by Harley Jones
Sata-Häme Soi Accordion Festival
DAILY REPORTS by Kevin Friedrich online at Sata-Häme Soi.

The international VII Primus Ikaalinen Accordion Competition was held at the Sata-Häme Soi Festival. The competition was organized for the seventh time and the final was broadcast live on Finland´s National TV and live on the internet.

The winner of Primus Ikaalinen is Cory Pesaturo (USA) and Giorgio Albanese (Italy) placed second.
The first round of the competition ended with four players (three on the same mark) going into the finals. The finals ended with equal marks for Cory and Giorgio with a judges decision awarding the first prize to Cory.

The tight competition culminated in an exciting musical duel between Cory Pesaturo and Giorgio Albanese as they played ’Libertango’ by Astor Piazzolla.
1. Cory Pesaturo, USA
2. Giorgio Albanese, Italy
3. Matthias Matzke, Germany
4. Marko Kotilainen, Finland
5. Julie Blocher, France & Alexander Veretnnikov, Russia
7. Natanael Teixeira, Portugal
8. Danijel Stankovic, Austria

Members of the Jury were: Gary Daverne (New Zealand/Jury President), Kevin Friedrich (USA), Renzo Ruggieri (Italy), Julien Gonzales (France), Alexander Shirunov (Russia), Satu Sopanen (Finland).

The winner of Primus Ikaalinen 2011
Cory Pesaturo, USA (24 years old)
Competition pieces:
1. Caravan-Cherokee
2. World-Mix

Cory Pesaturo, an internationally known 24-year old musician, studied in the USA at New England Conservatory, where he was the first person ever to graduate with accordion as his major instrument. He is a dazzling improviser, whose specialty area is jazz. He performed as early as the age of 12 at the White House for President Bill Clinton.

Second prize
Giorgio Albanese, Italy (25 years old)
Competition pieces:
1. Cherokee-Donna Lee (Ray Noble/Charlie Parker, arr. R. Ruggieri)
2. Italian Medley: Tango en tres-Grande Jo

The Italian representative Giorgio Albanese is a 25-year old musician, who has become familiar to an international public with customized accordion performances – and the handsome dreadlocks. A skillful player who is equally at home in different areas of popular music from jazz to tango, and various world music styles. He studies at the Berklee College of Music (Boston, USA). In Italy, in the last two years, he has won almost ten different competition and music awards.

Further information is in the Daily Reports by Kevin Friedrich online at Sata-Häme Soi.
Corey Pesaturo

Voci Armoniche

2011 AAA Competition/Festival July 13-17 in Charleston, SC

by Rita Barnea
AAA Logo
Joan SommersThe American Accordionists' Association is proud to announce the 2011 AAA Festival from July 13-17, 2011 at the Sheraton at Charleston Airport, Charleston, South Carolina.

At this time, the International Accordion Orchestra Competition will take place. The competition is open to all accordion orchestras. There is no restriction as to the number of members in the orchestra. The minimum requirement is eight accordions.

The Festival Orchestra music is available for distribution. The orchestra will be conducted by Joan Sommers. The selections for the concert include: "Sound of Music", "Welcome to Venice", "Phantom of the Opera".

Please email indicating your grade level or send request by FAX 203-335-2048 or by phone: 203-335-2045

Join us as Joan C. Sommers (photo on left) is honored with the AAA's prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award.

There will be cash awards, workshops, exhibits, concerts, and competitions for all ages. The schedule includes:
Wednesday.....Registration, Press & Squeeze

Attend to see and hear fantastic accordionists and workshops. The following people/groups will perform July 13-17th:
Walter Kasprzyk, Dr. Rober McMahan; Joy Bechtler; soprano, Ocotrillo( Gabe Hall-Rodriguez, Sean Brogan, Wes Anderson) will feature Frank Petrill, Eddie Monteiro as well as Gabe; Keren Malan-Uribe;Joan Grauman; Mary Tokarski; Donna Dee Ray; Ray Oreggia; The Connecticut Accordion Orchestra conducted by AAA President Linda Soley Reed; Joe Natoli; Martin Accordion Orchestra conducted by Randy Martin; The Festival Accordion Orchestra conducted by AAA Lifetime Achievement Award Winner; Joan C. Sommers; Massed band conducted by Frank Busso; The K Trio; Alicia Baker; Jeff Lisenby; Eddie Monteiro, Dr. Ian Blair Fries; Randy Martin; Rita Davidson; plus more!

Thursday........Luncheon Concert, Cabaret Night
Friday.............Massed Band Performance conducted by Frank Busso, Gala Evening Concert
Saturday.........Awards Concert, Banquet, Lifetime Achievement Award Presentation, Festival Orchestra conducted by Joan Sommers.
Sunday...........Breakfast Meeting and Farewell

The AAA Festival Coordinators are: Mary Tokarski, Frank Busso, Linda Soley Reed.

Make sure you attend for wonderful, memorable music, friendship, and more!

You can register via email with credit card info until July 5th . . . After that, ONLY event tickets will be available - no packages!  Prices change as well. 
Registration is ALWAYS available at the Festival . . . and tickets for individual events can be purchased at the door as well.  There are just NO PACKAGES available - the money-saver process so try to register by July 5th!

For further information view 2011AArules or the AAA website or email Mary Tokarski: or Linda Reed at

Accordion Jazz Chords

38th Annual Kimberley International Old Time Accordion Championship

by Rita Barnea
KIOTAC LOGOThe 38th Annual KIOTAC takes place from July 4th to July 9th at the Kimberley Civic Center in Kimberley, Canada. (The Bavarian City of the Rockies)

Rated one of the Top 100 Events in North America by the American Bus Association, the Kimberley International Old Time Accordion Championships, more easily known as KIOTAC, is an annual event that brings accordion players and lovers from all over the world.

Celebrating its 38th year in 2011, KIOTAC fills the community halls and arenas with daily competitions featuring some of the world’s best accordion musicians, from under the age of 10 to over the age of 75. If you love to dance, this is the place to be. Bring your lawn chair and your dancing shoes, as you’ll be entertained in the heart of Kimberley’s Platzl all day under the warm summer sun. In the evenings the action fires up at the local arena for the best of the best.

Whether you attend as a competitor or as part of the audience, this grass-roots event is all about meeting friends, sharing memories, and showing off great talents! And with more than $12,000 in prize money awarded, and over $6,000 in bursaries to youth, this is a highly prestigious event and competition.

Cory Pesaturo, Alicia Baker, Tight Squeeze, Jelena Milojevic, the Alex Meixner Band, the Austin Kawa Band and the Gordanaires are all scheduled to play, as well as the best of the Platzl jams and the KIOTAC Mass Band are all scheduled for concerts and dances.

Competitors from under 8 to over 80 will all compete in the various different categories, with the ultimate prize being the Happy Hans trophy.
Action centres on the Platzl all through the week with jam sessions, competitions at the Civic Centre all day long as well, and concerts and dances each night at the Civic Centre.

The schedule of events is:
Monday July 4: Alicia Baker - Concert 7:00 pm; Tight Squeeze - Dance 9:00 pm
Tuesday July 5: Cory Pesaturo - Concert 7:00 pm; Alex Meixner Band - Dance 9:00
Wednesday July 6: Alex Meixner - Concert/Dance 7:00 pm
Thursday July 7: Best of the Platzl Jams - Dance 7:00 pm
Friday July 8: KIOTAC Massed band - Concert 7:00 pm; Ausin Kawa Band 9:00 pm
Saturday July 9: Happy Hans Finals/ trophies & Bursary Band Concert 7:00 pm, Gordinaires - Dance 9:00 pm

For more, 1-888-4KIOTAC or 250-427-7318


5th Annual Victoria Accordion Festival July 14-17 in Canada

by Rita Barnea
The 5th International Victoria Accordion Festival will be held on July 14-17, 2011 in Victoria, B.C

Some fabulous concerts, workshops, and entertainment, including an open stage, trade show and for the very first time in Victoria…. the Accordion Parade have been planned for your enjoyment.

Headliners are legendary jazz accordionist Frank Marocco and one of the foremost classical accordionists of today, Jelena Milojevic.

For the first time, a competition of accordion orchestras will take place. It will be an amazing event, both for performers and the audience.

The Competition, Trade Show, Workshops, Open Stage and the Dance Night will be held at the Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre in Victoria. For your convenience, a great deal is available with the Comfort Hotel for all participants and festival guests. Room rates are $119 per room, based on double occupancy (kids stay for free), including complimentary continental buffet breakfast, free parking, and free Internet.

To make hotel reservations, please call: 1.866.754.4040 or 250.382.4400, or click on the link and mention the code “Victoria Accordion Festival”.

The BC Accordion Society, a non-profit society, was founded in early 2010 in the beautiful city of Victoria, B.C., Canada. Their mission is to promote the accordion through concerts, workshops, master classes and competitions.

In 2010, the society took over the Victoria Accordion Festival, establishing an accordion competition for the first time in Western Canada. Concerts were hosted for Jelena Milojevic (CMA Trophée Mondial 2003 winner), Alexander Sevastian (Coupe Mondiale 2007 winner) and Cory Pesaturo (Coupe Mondiale 2009 digital accordion winner).   

The society created the BC Accordion Orchestra, a unique 15 member ensemble that has already gained recognition for its top-caliber performances.

Their most important achievement, so far, has been establishing the accordion section at Camosun College in Victoria, B.C. Currently this is the only place in Canada, outside Toronto, Ont., where students can study accordion and obtain an official degree.

The BC Accordion Society has recently become a Voting Member for CIA (Confederation Internationale des Accordeonistes) and as such will be representing Canada in all future activities organized by the biggest accordion organization in the world, the Coupe Mondiale Accordion Competition and CIA Annual Congresses.

The President of the BC Accordion Society is Aleksandar Milojevic, Master of Fine Arts from the Tchaikovsky Music Conservatory in Kiev, Ukraine.

There will be $10,000 in prizes to be awarded in all age categories.

The schedule is:
July 14, 2011
Alix Goolden Hall
907 Pandora Ave, Victoria

July 15, 2011
A DANCE NIGHT (with dinner)
feat. Bonnie Birch Trio (USA)
Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre
3020 Blanshard St, Victoria

July 16,2011
St. Andrew’s Church
680 Courtney Street, Victoria

July 17, 2011
Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre
3020 Blanshard St, Victoria
July 15, 2011
Government St - Inner Harbour - Parliament Building
July 16, 2011
9am – 6pm
July 17, 2011
9am – 12pm
Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre
3020 Blanshard St, Victoria
July 17, 2011
Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre
3020 Blanshard St, Victoria
July15 – July 17, 2011
Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre
3020 Blanshard St, Victoria
July 16, 2011
Comfort Hotel & Conference Centre
3020 Blanshard St, Victoria

Plan to attend these exciting events!

For further information:
Tel: 778 433 8700

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

2011 Roland V-Accordion Festival July 29th in Orlando

by Rita Barnea
Roland V-Accordion LogoIf you are an accordion educator, player or simply an enthusiast, you’ll want to be in Orlando, Florida, this summer and attned the Roland V-Accordion Festival! The 2011 Roland U.S. V-Accordion® Festival finals will be held during the 71st Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International (ATG) Festival at the Renaissance Orlando Airport Hotel on July 29, 2011.

The Roland V-Accordion Festival, now in its fourth year, offers an opportunity for accordion players nationwide to showcase their talents, compete for amazing prizes and for the chance to represent the United States at the International V-Accordion Finals in Rome, Italy, held in October 2011.

Hopeful contestants began their quest by submitting audition videos that were reviewed by a panel of professional judges. Five lucky finalists in three competition categories — Senior (age 18 and older), Junior (age 17 and younger) and Diatonic (age 18 and older) – were then selected to continue on and compete at the National Finals.

Contestants and audience members alike are invited to attend workshops and master classes to be held during the Festival. Attendees will also be treated to performances featuring world-renowned accordion artist Maestro Sergio Scappini of Italy, seven-time diatonic accordion champion Danilo Di Paolonicola (Italy), 2010 Roland U.S. V-Accordion Festival winner Chris Gorton, father-and-son performers Alex and Peter Chudolij of Music Magic USA, GRAMMY® nominee Alex Meixner, and Roland U.S. V-Accordion Product Manager, Steve Albini.

The following finalists are listed in alphabetical order:
Youth Division: Brian Aucoin, Olivia Luey, Kassandra Patterson, Daniel Pavlotsky, Rachael Renzi.
Adult Division: Gregory Fainshtein, Anthony Federici, Svetlana Ivanchenko, Danielle Renzi, Tatiana Semichastnova.

For more information on the V-Accordion National Finals and the Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International (ATG) Festival, please visit or contact Mr. Steve Albini at

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

71st ATG Festival in Orlando from July 27-31

by Rita Barnea
ATG Logo
The Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International (ATG) welcomes all to their 71st Annual Competition and Festival in Orlando, Florida at the Renaissance Orlando Airport Hotel. Phone: 1-407-240-1000. ATG rates are available 3 days before and after the Festival.

The ATG Competition will be held in the following categories:
Open Solo, Free Bass Solo, Ethnic/Folk Solo, Polka Solo, Jazz Solo, Diatoni/Button Box , Pop Solo, Digital Accordion Solo, Evaluation, Duets, Ensembles, ad Accordion Orchestra and Accordions with Other Instruments Orchestra.

For ATG Entry Forms:

The 2011 Roland U.S. V-Accordion Festival finals will be on July 29, 2011 during the 71st Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International (ATG) Festival in Orlando, Florida.
There will be three competition categories:

Senior (age 18 and older)
Junior (age 17 and younger)
Diatonic (age 18 and older)

Performances will feature Italian accordion artist Sergio Scappini, seven-time diatonic accordion champion Danilo Di Paolonicola, 2010 Roland U.S. V-Accordion Festival winner Chris Gorton, father and son performers Alex and Peter Chudolij of Music Magic USA, Grammy nominee Alex Meixner, and Steve Albini of Roland U.S., Russian accordionist, Oleg Sharov, Jeff Lisenby, The Brian Laurie Accordion Showband from Scotland, Rock n Roll accordionist, Bruce Gassman, and Gordon Kohl. An amazing array of talent awaits those who attend the ATG and Roland Festival this July.

During the ATG Festival, attendees will have the opportunity to experience a variety of workshops on a variety of topics including:
•Teaching the Accordion - with panel of leading teachers from around the globe
•Conducting and Rehearsing Ensembles: hands-on experience with the professionals!
•"Perform Confidently" - workshops to enhance your performance, led by national educator and expert, Helen Spielman
•Playing Rock and Roll, Pop Styles
•Digital Accordion Workshop
•Ethnic & Folk Dance Styles anck.

For additional information please contact:
Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International (ATG) website.
Virginia Harmon, Roland Festival Coordinator
Phone: (323) 890-3776 or
Steven Albini, V-Accordion Product Manager, Roland Corporation U.S.
Phone: 323.890.3700 x 2353 or E-mail:

ATG Festival Coordinator: Liz Finch

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

K Trio to Perform at AAA Festival on July 15

by Rita Barnea
We are happy to announce the first performance in many years of the K Trio which will take place at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston, SC. They will perform on Friday July 15, 7 PM at the Gala Concert. Make sure you are there! It is not too late to register for the AAA Festival or purchase tickets for the many events and concerts.

The K Trio (two sisters and one brother - Mary Tokarski, Julie Kasprzyk Cardona and Walter Kasprzyk) performed nationwide in competitions and concerts as youngsters. As young adults, life moved them to different areas of the United States! After 25 years apart, they all relocated to Connecticut again, and soon after began performing as The "K" Trio.

Now they have reunited to perform again.

Julie represented the United States in the Coupe Mondiale in Holland (1967), England (1968) and New York City (1969). Mary also represented the United States in the Coupe Mondiale in Belgium (1971) and France (1973). Walter captured the Connecticut State Championship Title in 1966, 1967 and 1968, and went on to be a contender for the United States Championship many times thereafter.

As a duet team, Mary and Julie held the duet championship in the United States for over 12 years without being defeated. 

As soloists, as a duet team, and as a trio, they have performed both classical and contemporary music in concert and performances all over the United States and have cumulatively earned over 450 trophies and awards during their years in competition.

"...Imagine three world-class musicians with the technical precision of the Juilliard String Quartet and the universal appeal of the Boston Pops...The "K" Trio combines their experience and charm with these fine qualities to deliver accordion music like you've never heard it before!" Kevin Friedrich - Former President, Confederation Internationale des Accordeonistes (CIA)

For further information on the 2011 AAA Competition or for registration for the 2011 AAA Festival, K Trio and their CD's, e mail Mary Tokarski:

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Dr. Robert Young McMahan and Dr. Paul Cohen to Premiere New Work for Accordion and Saxophone

by Rita Barnea
AAA Logo
Dr. Robert Young McMahanAAA Secretary-Treasurer, Dr. Robert Young McMahan has composed a new work for soprano saxophone and accordion entitled "Romp II" and is part of a series of one-movement works carrying that title. 

The premiere will be presented by prominent saxophonist Dr. Paul Cohen at the 2011 AAA Master Class and Concert Series at the Tenri Institute, in New York City, on July 31, 7 PM.  "Romp I" was composed in 2005 for violin, accordion, and piano.  It was premiered at the 2005 AAA Master Class and Concert Series, at the Tenri Institute, by violinist Ruotao Mao, pianist Tomoko Kanamaru, and the composer on accordion. 

"Romp III", for accordion and piano, is in the process of being composed and will be premiered by New York pianist Joanna Chao and the composer on accordion in November as part of a Steinway recital series featuring Ms. Chao, to take place in Lawrenceville, New Jersey.  As the generic title suggests, these are generally energetic, "rambunctious" works.

In April 2011, the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet performed Dr.McMahan's
"Three Sets for Saxophone Quartet (2010)". Members of the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet are: Jordan P. Smith (soprano saxophone); Aaron Patterson (alto saxophone); Daniel Kochersberger (tenor saxophone); Jay Rattman (baritone saxophone). The composition was commissioned by Saxophonist Jordan Smith for the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet.The world premiere of the composition was on Feb.3, 2011 at The College of New Jersey by the Manhattan Saxophone Quartet.

Dr. Paul Cohen is one of America's most sought-after saxophonists for orchestral and chamber concerts and solo recitals. He has appeared as soloist with the San Francisco Symphony, Richmond Symphony, New Jersey Symphony, Charleston Symphony and Philharmonia Virtuosi. His many solo orchestra performances include works by Debussy, Creston, Ibert, Glazunov, Martin, Loeffler, Husa, Dahl, Still, Villa-Lobos, Tomasi, and Cowell. He has also performed with a broad range of orchestras, including the New York Philharmonic, Cleveland Orchestra, Santa Fe Opera, New Jersey Symphony, Oregon Symphony, Long Island Philharmonic, Group for Contemporary Music, Greenwich Symphony, Charleston Symphony, New York Solisti, and the Manhattan Chamber Orchestra.

He has recorded three albums with the Cleveland Symphonic Winds under the direction of Frederick Fennell and a compact disk of the music of Villa-Lobos with the Quintet of the Americas as well as recordings with the Saxophone Sinfonia, Philharmonia Virtuosi, New York Solisti, Paul Winter Consort, North-South Consonance, and the New Sousa Band. His most recent recordings include an environmental-jazz CD of solo improvisations, the newly discovered classical saxophone concerto of the 19th-century American composer Caryl Florio, and his solo CD, Vintage Saxophones Revisited, featuring the premiere recording of Cowell's Hymn and Fuguing Tune #18. Recent recordings include works for saxophone and orchestra by Bernhard Heiden, Maurice Whitney, Alfred Reed, and Sabine Pautza and a solo work by Robert Martin.

A specialist on the soprano saxophone, Dr. Paul Cohen is the founder and leader of the New Hudson Quartet, which has performed concertos of Calvin Hampton and Nicolas Flagello, and recently released two CDs of American music: "Breathing Lessons" and "Quartet at the Crossroads".

Dr. Cohen is currently on the faculties of Manhattan School of Music, Rutgers University, New York University, Montclair State University and the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College. He holds M.M and DMA degrees from Manhattan School of Music. His teachers have included Galan Kral, Joe Allard, and Sigurd Rascher. He has published more than 100 articles on the history and literature of the saxophone in music journals such as the Saxophone Journal, Instrumentalist, CBDNA Notes, Clarinet and Saxophone Society Magazine of Great Britain, The Grainger Society Journal, and the Saxophone Symposium, and since 1985 a feature column, “Vintage Saxophones Revisited,” for the Saxophone Journal.

Combining his musicological pursuits with performing activities, Dr. Cohen has rediscovered and performed lost saxophone literature, including solo works for saxophone and orchestra by Loeffler, Florio and Dahl (for winds), as well as rare chamber works by Grainger, Ornstein, Sousa, Cowell, Siegmeister, and Loeffler. As arranger he has written The Renaissance Book, a collection of Renaissance songs and dances for saxophone quartet (Galaxy Music); Four Piano Blues of Copland for saxophone quartet (Boosey and Hawkes); and, as editor, has prepared the ossia passages for the Concerto for Saxophone by Ross Lee Finney (Peters Music). His company, To the Fore Publishers, publishes his arrangements and settings for saxophone ensemble as well as original, historical, and contemporary saxophone works from selected composers. Dr. Cohen frequently presents lectures on the saxophone, illustrating his talks with rare instruments, manuscripts, and archival material from his extensive private collection.

Dr. Cohen’s recent concerts included an Artist - in Residency at the Royal College of Music and Dance in Cardiff Wales, where he performed the European premiere of Judith Hidgon’s Concerto for Soprano Saxophone. as well as performances at Weill Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall, Symphony Space, the Metrolpolitan Museum of Art, the 92nd Street Y, and Merkin Hall with such groups as the New York Philharmonic, New Hudson Saxophone Quartet and the Manhattan Sinfonietta. Cohen recorded Constantinides’ Gift to Music with North/South Consonance, a chamber ensemble, and is featured on two recent releases by the New Hudson Saxophone Quartet: Breathing Lessons on Naxos and Quartet at Crossroads on the Capstone label. Cohen continues to champion the original 1949 version of Ingolf Dahl’s Saxophone Concerto, a lost composition about which he has written extensively. 

This past season Dr. Cohen performed Concertos by Karl Husa, Jennifer Higdon, Walter Hartley and William Latham with ensembles in the New York Area. The Presser Music Company published his arrangement for saxophone choir of Variations on America by Charles Ives in spring 2008, and Boosey and Hawkes just issued Cohen’s saxophone quartet arrangements of music by Aaron Copland, including Four Piano Blues, Simple Gifts, and Our Town. He also publishes a specialized technique book titled The Altissimo Primer. Cohen continues to offer his two-week intensive Saxophone Institute in July at the New York Summer Music Festival in Oneonta NY.

Secretary-Treasurer of the AAA, Dr.Robert Young McMahan has long promoted classical music for the accordion through his extensive performance, recording, composing, teaching and writing. McMahan teaches Theory and Composition at the College of New Jersey and offers the major in accordion there as well

Dr. McMahan is Professor of Music at The College of New Jersey where he is also Area Coordinator of Music Theory, Composition, Ear Training, and Classical Accordion. Prior to his appointment at TCNJ, Dr. McMahan taught Music Theory and related subjects at Towson University, Morgan State University, College of Notre Dame, Essex Community College, and the Peabody Preparatory School (of the Peabody Institute) where he was Head of the Theory Department and developed its curriculum.  He also taught Classical Accordion at the Peabody Preparatory School and at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.

Dr. McMahan studied composition with Robert Hall Lewis, Jean Eichelberger Ivey, and Stefan Grove at the Peabody Institute.  He received honors in composition there and awards in composition from the Annapolis Fine Arts Composers’ Competition and Contemporary Recording Society. In addition, he has received a number of Meet the Composer grants since 1996.

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

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

Besides his numerous published articles, Dr. McMahan has been featured in articles by others in Keyboard Magazine, The Music Connoisseur, High Fidelity, Who’s Who in American Composers:  Classical, and several other highly regarded publications.

Dr. McMahan serves as a reader and table leader at the annual examinations readings of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Program for Music Theory and had been a reader for the Graduate Record Examination in Music Theory prior to its discontinuance.

For more information about Dr. Robert Young McMahan:
For more information about Dr. Paul Cohen :

Titano Accordion Company

Alex Meixner to Perform at Roland Festival in Orlando

by Rita Barnea
Alex MeixnerAlex will be one of the featured artists at the Roland US 2011 V-Accordion Festival on July 29,2011 during the 71st ATG, International Festival in Orlando, Florida at the Renaissance Orland Airport Hotel. Alex will entertain at the 6 PM Banquet and at the 8 PM concert.

22007 Grammy nominee Alex Meixner began his performing career began at age 6 with his two sisters and father in an ethnic folk ensemble. From these early experiences through headline appearances at music festivals throughout the US; concert performances with the London Symphony Orchestra, Sandy Duncan and his own jazz and ethnic ensembles; as well as over 50 recordings, Meixner has developed a unique musical mix that appeals to a wide cross-section of audiences.
Meixner’s formative musical studies were on piano and piano accordion, but he quickly branched out on drums, diatonic button accordion, bass and trumpet, his college major. This instrumental versatility is combined with a musical background that has included intense studies and performance of jazz, classical, pop, polkas and many ethnic folk music genres with some of the leading artists in the world. His talents in music and comedy were even featured on the Tonight Show on NBC in 2004. Most recently, his “Polka Freak Out” CD with Bubba Hernandez garnered a Grammy nomination in December, 2007.
Currently based in Palm City, FL, Alex is performing as a solo artist and with numerous touring ensembles. His solo programs- “Fascinating Rhythms of the World” focus on the fusion of Slavic folk music and Jazz, but also include the inflections of folk, pop and classical styles from Latin America, Africa and other sections of Europe. This music is the basis for a series of multicultural music education seminars and performances which are currently available through the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts “Artists in Education” program.

Alex has developed a fresh musical voice that has made him one of the most exciting performers on the American polka scene
Alex’s high energy performances of everything from old time polkas and waltzes to more jazz and pop influenced repertoire has won over audiences throughout North America and continues to attract new fans.
Equally at home with traditional and contemporary styles, performances on about a dozen instruments (including the 12 foot long Swiss Alphorn and trademark Meixner Button Box sound) and vocals in English, German, Slovenian, Croatian, Czech and more- the band’s reputation continues to grow.

From dynamic polkas and waltzes to Gypsy folk songs to Rocktoberfest parodies, Swing, Latin and Country dance music- the dizzying array of music is perfect for everything from World Music Concerts and family friendly folk festivals to a frenetic non-stop

The Beaumont Council of the Knights of Columbus brought Grammy nominated Alex Meixner to Calmar on June 30th.
"We're very fortunate to get someone of his calibre up here," said Joe Lauer. "He's a real showman and his dance band is second to none."

Alex will be in Canada to adjudicate and perform at the International Oldtime Accordion Championships taking place in Kimberly, B.C. July 4 to 9

Alex's performance schedule:
07/04/11 - 07/09/11 Kimberley, BC
Kimberley International Oldtime Accordion Championships
07/12/11 Fridley, MN Knights of Columbus
7:00 to 11:00 PM. Sponsored by the Midwest Polka Association – Alex Meixner Band
07/13/11 Milwaukee, WI
Kochanski’s Concertina Beer Hall
07/14/11 Enon Valley, PA
SNPJ Campsite Pavilion
Time: 6:00pm. Admission: $8. Address: 270 Martin Rd.. Alex Meixner Band with special guest Bob Turcola
07/15/11 State College, PA
Central PA Festival of the Arts
07/16/11 - 07/17/11 New Ulm, MN
Bavarian Blast
07/27/11 - 07/30/11
Orlando, FL Accordion & Teachers Guild Convention,Alex Meixner Solo as Product Specialist for Roland V-Accordion
08/04/11 Sonoma, CA, Little Switzerland
08/05/11 - 08/06/11 San Jose, CA
Teske’s Germania
08/11/11 Prospect Heights (Brooklyn), NY
The Way Station
08/12/11 Fleetwood, PA Evergreen Heimatbund
08/13/11 Hunter Mountain, NY
Brats & Brews Festival
08/14/11 Bethlehem, PA Musikfest
08/20/11 Honesdale, PA
The Alpine Oktoberfest
Time: 6:00pm. Alex Meixner Band
09/03/11 - 09/05/11 Berea, OH
Cleveland Oktoberfest
Address: Berea Fairground. Alex Meixner Band

Alex also released a new CD "Three Ring Circus" in 2011, available on CDBaby.

For further information about the Roland Festival:
Steven Albini, V-Accordion Product Manager, Roland Corporation U.S.
Phone: 323.890.3700 x 2353 or E-mail:

For further information about Alex Meixner:


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

Eddie Monteiro to Conduct and Perform at AAA Festival

by Rita Barnea
Eddie MonteiroJazz accordionist and AAA Board Member, Eddie Monteiro, will conduct a special Jazz Ensemble at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston, SC, which takes place July 13-17.

A select group of young accordionists between the ages of 13 and 28 will be joined by Charleston area high school aged youth who play instruments other than accordion. The 2011 AAA Youth Program Jazz Ensemble will rehearse on Friday and perform several jazz pieces at the Festival's Awards Ceremony and Concert, Saturday, July 16th at 2 PM..

With all of these new developments in mind, the American Accordionists Association is proud of this exciting new effort to promote the accordion among young aspiring musicians.

On Friday, July 15th 7 PM, Eddie will perform on the Gala Concert with the group, Ocotrillo. The group consists of 2010 AAA U.S. Virtuoso Solo Winner, Gabe -Hall Rodriguez (accordion), Sean Brogan (bass), and Wes Anderson (drums).

Eddie Monteiro has performed at Jazz Festivals throughout the world. National performances include the JVC Jazz Festival and the Toyota Jazz Festival in New York City, Salishan Jazz Festival and the Centrum Jazz Festival both in Washington. Internationally Eddie was a guest at the North Sea Jazz Festival in Holland, the Jakarta Jazz Festival in Indonesia, Sea Jazz Festival in Helsinki, the Norwegian National Accordion Competition, Sweden's Annual Accordion Festival in Ransatter and in January of 2000 Eddie closed the Jazz In El Tambo Festival in Punta del Esta, Uruguay performing with Paquito D'Rivera, Leny Andrade, John Patitucci and Benny Golson.

He has conducted workshops and seminars at the Manhattan School of Music, Kansas City Jazz Workshop, Artists in Jazz at Pace University, Topeka Jazz Workshop and a Harmony & Improvisation Clinic in Norway. His numerous recordings include Double Standards, The Real Thing, A Perfect Match (with Nancy Marano featuring Gerry Mulligan, Roger Kellaway and Claudio Roditi), Under Paris Skies (with Karen Akers), A Walk on the Wilde Side (with Ronny Whyte), Jazz Influence and  Arkadia Jazz All Stars: Thank You John! (a tribute to John Coltrane) and was featured on the album with the vocal group ‘String Of Pearls’. His work has also included numerous jingles for Colgate-Palmolive, Budweiser, General Motors, Folonari Wines, General Foods a soundtrack recording with Marvin Hamlisch and an appearance on film ‘Mortal Thoughts’ with Bruce Willis.

A graduate of NYU with a B.S. in Music Education, Eddie studied accordion with Charles Nunzio, (one of the founding members of the American Accordionists’ Association), piano with Madame Olga Van Till and advanced harmony studies with Marty Holmes.  He presently is a music teacher and choral director at Ann Street School (New Jersey) and is also Musical Director at Matawan-Aberdeen High School Summer Theater and vocal director for Matawan Avenue Middle School’s Spring musicals - conducting, coaching and accompanying students on productions of numerous Broadway plays. 'The Trio' a CD recorded with Joe Cocuzzo (drums) and Lenny Argese (guitar) was the most recent release in 2006 when the group was performing weekly at the Retreat Lounge at the Short Hills  Hilton (NJ)

Eddie is a member of the AAA Governing Board and is a Certified Teacher Member of AAA as well as a member of Music Educators' National Conference, National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, Technology Institute for Music Educators, National Education Association, Jazz Educators Association the Sommelier Institute and is an Amateur Radio General Class Operator.

For further information:

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

Ocotrillo to Perform at AAA Festival in July

by Gabe, Wes, Sean
Ocotrillo is comprised of Gabe Hall‐Rodrigues (acccordion and vocals), Sean Brogan (bass), and Wes Anderson (drums). All members of the trio graduated with degrees in music from Arizona State University (ASU). Ocotrillo's repertoire contains a variety of music styles, including classic jazz and standards, older styles, such as Dixieland or New Orleans jazz, as well as music from various parts of Brazil, including numbers by Tom Jobim, Gilberto Gil, Luiz Gonzaga, and more. The group brings a fun and positive energy to playing, and each performer holds awards for his respective instruments from national and state organizations. The group hopes to be able to entertain any audience and truly enjoys making music together for people who enjoy it.

Gabe Hall‐Rodrigues is a native of Arizona and began playing piano at the age of 7. He grew up in a Brazilian‐American family and the mixing of his two parents’ cultures provided him with exposure to a variety of genres and a unique set of musical experiences. Although only 23, Gabe has been performing in Arizona, California, and Mexico for the past 9 years and has performed with a variety of ensembles primarily playing keyboard or piano, and singing.

Gabe graduated ASU in May 2010 with a degree in Music Therapy. He is beginning his Master’s Degree program in Jazz Piano Performance in the Fall of 2011. Gabe is an active performer in the Phoenix valley with several groups, including: Another Day, a local reggae‐ rock band in which he plays keyboards, accordion and is the lead singer; The Dixie Devils, an ASU‐ affiliated New Orleans style jazz band in which he plays accordion and sings; and Som Brasil, a local Brazilian band playing a variety of genres native to that country. He has been featured singing with the ASU Concert Jazz Band on two occasions and was an accordion soloist with the ASU Sun Devil Marching Band. Gabe was featured as a guest artist with the Salt River Brass Band on various concerts and has performed with numerous chamber ensembles highlighting many works by Astor Piazzolla.

Gabe was awarded first place in the U.S. Virtuoso Solo Competition at the 2010 American Accordionists’ Association Festival in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

Sean Brogan is a recent graduate from the Herberger School of Music at ASU. As a Jazz Performance major, Sean‘s education focused heavily on Theory, Performance, Ear Training, Arranging, Composition, and Improvisation. While at ASU, Sean had the opportunity to perform in many exceptional ensembles, including ASU’s Latin Jazz Band, Concert Jazz Band and various small ensembles. For his Senior recital, many original compositions were presented, which represented the many musical influences throughout his life. Since graduating in May 2010 with honors (Magna Cum Laude), Sean has pursued his career as a freelance musician.

Being well versed in many musical styles has led Sean to work alongside other great artists, such as Frank Marocco, Fred Forney, Nick Manson, Margo Reed, Barb Catlin, Lynne Timmes, and many others. Sean currently holds the principal bassist position for the Phoenix Children’s Chorus and is a former member of the Sedona Jazz on the Rocks youth band.

Wesley Anderson started playing the drum‐set at the age of 8. By the age of 17, he joined the Arizona Academy Drum and Bugle Corps, where he played snare drum from 2004‐2008. During this time he received numerous awards and championship titles. Wes attended ASU from 2008‐2010 receiving his Bachelor of Music in Jazz Performance in December of 2010. He currently teaches the ASU drum‐line, as well as local private students. Over the years Wes has been given the opportunity to play with many notable musicians, including Frank Marocco, Stas Venglevski, Vince Abbracciante, Bob Mintzer, Wycliff Gordon, Gregg Bissonette and many others.

for further information:

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Steve Albini to Perform at Roland US 2011 V-Accordon Festival

by Rita Barnea
Steve AlbiniAccordion player extraordinaire Steve Albini of Roland USA, is a multi-instrumentalist and singer. His performances of Italian music fused with jazz and world rhythms have brought him international acclaim.
He has enchanted audiences throughout the United States and Italy with a blend of musical virtuosity and artistic passion. Steve’s live performances span Italian, world, jazz and Latin American genres. As a studio musician, he is often called upon by artists, composers, and producers to add his touch to their projects. Steve also has a background in retail music sales.
Steve resides in Northern California with his family. Steve joined Roland Corporation US in June 2001 as a V-Accordion Product Specialist and Sales Consultant.

For further information:

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Joe Natoli's Performances

by Rita Barnea
Joe NatoliOn Monday, June 20, 2011, Joseph Natoli performed for the first time at the famed Chicago Accordion Club meeting in the Chicago suburb of Elmhurst, Illinois. The Chicago Accordion Club is one of the most well-known accordion clubs in the country and Joe is preceded at this monthly meeting by such great artists as Art Van Damme, Frank Marocco, Eddie Monteiro, and Stas Venglevski.

Joe delighted all with a variety of original compositions and arrangements, all specifically created for the Roland FR7x Virtual accordion, and exploiting the robust orchestral sounding capabilities of the instrument. Joe played a very accurate recreation of Aaron Copland’s orchestral masterpiece “Fanfare For the Common Man,” as well as a program of classical, light classical, and jazz favorites.

Joe presented his CDs “Waltz For Ron” (an all Roland recording) and “Omaggio” (an all acoustic Giulietti free bass recording) at the event, along with his new “Adult Accordion Method (Vol 1).” In addition, since Joe is a Roland V-Accordion dealer, he answered questions about the V-Accordion line.

Joe will also perform at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston on the the Thursday, July 14th, Cabaret NIght. He will present his workshop, "Getting the Most Out of Your Digital Accordion, Midi Orchestration" on Friday, July 15th at 8:30 AM.

Joseph Natoli lives in northeast Ohio and has been a performer and advocate of the accordion since 1960. Joe started his studies with prominent Ohio accordion teacher, the late Mickey Bisilia of Youngstown, Ohio. Like many other accordionists of his time, Joe developed his classical performance skills in state and national competitions hosted by the American Accordionists' Association (AAA), eventually winning its national title at the age of 18 in Washington, D.C. Later that year (1972), Joe became the AAA United States representative in the Coupe Mondiale world accordion competition held in Caracas, Venezuela, where he was chosen first runner up. Joe also released an album for Giulietti Accordion Corporation that year entitled Accordion Masterworks presents Joseph Natoli and Richard Romiti, which includes many unique solo and duet arrangements and original compositions for the free bass accordion.

Natoli was the first student ever to be accepted at the University of Toronto using free bass accordion as an applied major instrument, studying with renowned Canadian accordionist Joseph Macerollo. While at the University of Toronto, Joe participated in the first International Accordion Symposium as a performer and composer, for which his Eclat for 5 accordions was commissioned. In 1978 and 1979, Joe also received 2 substantial Ohio Arts Council grants to write and record Prism/Rebirth for free bass accordion, flute, clarinet, violin, viola, and a large constituent of percussion.

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

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

Joseph Natoli is very active at accordion festivals and conventions as a clinician and performer. Make sure you attend his workshop and performance at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston.

For further information on Joe's workshops or purchasing his CD's and books:

Titano Accordion Company

Bruce Gassman to Perform at 2011 ATG Festival in Orlando, Florida

by Rita Barnea
Bruce GassmanBruce Gassman will entertain at the 2011 ATG Festival in Orlando. He will perform on Thursday, July 28th, for the 7 PM Social Hour and 8 PM concert. On Saturday, July 30th, 10 AM, Bruce will present his workshop, " Rock & Roll Stylings". He will also play at 6 PM on Saturday evening.

Bruce Gassman "The KING of Rock 'n Roll Accordion" began the accordion at age 9, studying with Jim Greer at the Tommy Tucker Studios. One year later he and his father took the Silver Streak Train to Miami and Bruce entertained the travelers in the “club” car going to Florida and coming home. While in Miami, Bruce performed twice at the Casablanca Hotel.

At age 11 he gave his first Senior Recital at Normandy Hall and at age 12, now studying with Alfred Manfredi, he was the guest soloist with a Symphony Orchestra’s performance at Convention Hall in Asbury Park, NJ.
Bruce played with the Asbury Park Boys Club Orchestra and then auditioned for and won the National Boy's Club of America Music Scholarship Award and for the next four years he studied with famed accordionist, Joseph Biviano of New York City.
After performing extensively with various groups for almost 20 years, in 1992 he stopped playing to focus on family and his real estate career. However, after a 15 year sabbatical, Bruce knew it was time to "get back in the game", so in 2007 he attended an AAA meeting in Hazlet, NJ. In attendance were Carmen Carozza, Mary Tokarski and Dr. Carmelo Pino, who was also a member of the Biviano Orchestra in the early 60’s, the same time as Bruce. That meeting turned out to be the new beginning.
Later that year Bruce joined the Accordion Pops Orchestra conducted by Daniel Desiderio and in 2008 became the first accordionist ever to perform with Holiday Express, a group of 80 professional musicians and 600 volunteers who, from Thanksgiving till Christmas, bring the gift of human kindness to those less fortunate. In 2009, Holiday Express performed more than 50 shows at Developmental Centers, Psychiatric Hospitals and Children’s Special Schools. Bruce had the pleasure of playing at 25 of them. Today Bruce enjoys performing at festivals across the nation, and has recently released a popular CD recording.

For further information:

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

AAA Master Class and Concert Series, NYC July 29-31st

by William Schimmel













JULY 29, 30 AND 31 2011

Jeff Lisenby to Perform at AAA and ATG Festivals

by Rita Barnea
Jeff LisenbyJazz accordionist, Jeff Lisenby, who holds a master’s degree from The Conservatory of Music of the University of Missouri-Kansas City, will perform at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston on July 15th 7 PM at the Gala Concert and Reception. Jeff will also perform with his trio at the ATG Festival in Orlando, Florida on Saturday evening, July 30th, at 8 PM.

Jeff Lisenby was conductor/keyboardist/accordionist for: RING OF FIRE on Broadway and for the subsequent versions in Fullerton, Escondido, and La Mirada, CA for the past two summers. He was also keyboardist for: Tennessee Repertory Theatre's GREASE, BIG RIVER, A CHORUS LINE, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, and 1776, performed with the touring shows of: WICKED, JERSEY BOYS, 9 TO 5, DREAMGIRLS, LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE, CHICAGO, ANNIE GET YOUR GUN, and CITY OF ANGELS.

As a freelance musician, he has toured with the: Drifters, Coasters, Diamonds, Mills Brothers, and Boots Randolph and Brenda Lee, and has accompanied: Luciano Pavarotti, David Cassidy, Lee Greenwood, Donna Summer, Tricia Yearwood, Three-Dog Night, and Mel Tormé, among many others.

Jeff was twice National Champion for the Accordion Teachers’ Guild, and twice bronze-medalist in international classical accordion championships (Coupe Mondiale), and silver medalist in the entertainment division. In addition to being a music instructor at Belmont University in Nashville, TN since 1993, Lisenby is also blessed to play on numerous recordings, and is the musical director for several of Norwegian Cruise Lines’ and Oceania’s production shows. Purchase CD from Jeff Lisenby website.

For more information:

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 to Honor Tony Lovello, August 12-13

by Rita Barnea
Tony LovelloTony Lovello, proclaimed “the living legend of the accordion world” and known widely as “The Liberace of the Accordion” and “King of the Bellow Shake,” will be the featured guest artist and special honoree at ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011.

The fourth annual ACCORDIONS NOW! Music Festival will be held Friday-Saturday, August 12-13, at a beautiful new location, the Nashua Courtyard Marriott, Nashua, New Hampshire.

Tony Lovello, Rita Davidson, and Evan Harlan [featured in a separate article, this issue] will perform at the Gala Concert on Saturday evening following the Gala Banquet.

“ACCORDIONS NOW! owes its very existence to Tony Lovello,” co-founder Donna Maria Regis explains. “The idea for a New England accordion festival was inspired by Tony's performance at the first concert ever co-sponsored by the New Hampshire Accordion Association [NHAA] and Accordion Connection LLC.“ From the success of that inaugural event, Regis, NHAA’s Music Director, and festival co-founder Suzanne Welch of Accordion Connection, brought the concept of ACCORDIONS NOW! to fruition, and, with Lovello’s personal guidance, have made it an annual success. The ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 Festival Orchestra’s program, states Regis, offers “a musical ‘thank you’ to the festival’s guiding light, Tony Lovello.”

ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 has a schedule packed full with talent.

Concert Artists & Workshop Presenters [in alphabetical order]: ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival Orchestra, Rita Davidson, Stephen Dominko, Fabio & Fabio, Sam Falcetti, Lynda Fish, Evan Harlan, Tony Lovello, Gary Morin, Donna Maria Regis, Jerry Tramontozzi, Carmen Vitanza, Arthur Welch, and a surprise or two.

The Festival Schedule, updated, includes Friday meet & greet, open mike night, concert, and jam session; Saturday afternoon and evening concerts; morning workshops and lecture-demonstrations, casual jam sessions, vendor exhibits, door prize drawings, festive lunch buffet, cocktail reception with entertainment, gala plated banquet, and more.

YOU can perform, too!  Join the ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 Festival Orchestra.  Pre-registration is required by July 22.

Fascinating, entertaining and useful workshops are on tap:

Stephen Dominko: Lecture-Demonstration on Technique and Style
Stephen Dominko – the only accordionist ever to play with the New York Philharmonic, the youngest in history to win the US Open [13], and youngest-ever World Champion [17] – will share his vast knowledge and experience. You will be thrilled to learn that Stephen will perform several selections to illustrate his points.

Sam Falcetti: Secrets of Accordion Fingering
Sam Falcetti [featured in a separate article of this issue] is back by popular request! Last year, Sam taught how to memorize a song in five minutes. This year he tackles the often thorny topic of correct fingering. If you have ever "run out of fingers" in the middle of a passage, you need this workshop. Sam will help you avoid fingering problems by teaching you how to choose the correct finger every time.

Arthur Welch: Avoiding the Pitfalls of Do-It-Yourself Accordion Repairs
By popular demand! Arthur Welch will answer your questions on accordion repair. If you have ever tried to fix your own accordion, this is the workshop for you. If you think you would like to try to do your own repairs, this is the workshop for you. Here is your chance to learn what makes an accordion tick and to avoid the pitfalls of do-it-yourself repairs.

Rita Davisdons: Eugene Ettore [1921-1985]: 

A 90th Anniversary Appreciation of His Life and Music.
Rita Davidson, virtuoso accordionist, educator, editor, and curator, honors her late, esteemed teacher – the noted composer Eugene Ettore [1921-1985] on the 90th anniversary of his birth. Rita will perform in the Gala Concert Saturday evening and give a workshop on Ettore's life and music Saturday morning.

Other concert performers on the roster:

Fabio & Fabio: Continuing a Family Tradition of Father-Son Duets
Fabio Lucarelli III says, "I believe my father and grandfather, both accomplished accordionists [who] entertained as father and son, are looking their tradition of father and son continues.”

Lynda Fish & Friends: A Concert of Collaboration

Lynda Fish enjoys musical collaboration – with her fellow accordionists in duet, trio or larger ensembles – or with other instrumentalists in groups such as the German Oktoberfest bands with which she often performs. Lynda was recently featured as soloist in two concerts with the Middlesex Concert Band.

Gary Morin: Music of Many Styles and Countries

Since 1976 accordionist Gary Morin has been serving New England with music from around the world -- including Italian, French, Irish, German, Polish, and Eastern European -- as well as big band, jazz, tangos, and many other styles

. eSheet music by Gary  Morin.

Donna Maria Regis, Artistic Director of ACCORDIONS NOW!, performs solo, in duet, and in ensemble. She conducts the ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival Orchestra [AN!FO], which will perform some of Tony Lovello's solo arrangements she has adapted for ensemble.

Jerry Tramontozzi: Enthusiastic Performer of Musical Favorites
Jerry Tramontozzi and his accordion are always in demand on the entertainment circuit.  He performs up and down the East Coast, from New England to Florida, always with a big friendly smile.

Carmen Vitanza: Selections from a Seasoned Professional 
Carmen Vitanza claims he has "been there, done that." It's true. To document his claim, he has written a memoir about his experiences as a lifelong professional. My Accordion: The Music of My Life covers 60 years of his memories in society and swing bands, jazz groups, and as a one-man band.

ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 Festival Orchestra: A Musical Tribute of Thanks to Tony Lovello
“The ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 Festival Orchestra,” says conductor Donna Maria Regis, “offers a musical tribute to our cherished mentor and friend, Tony Lovello.”

Do not miss this special accordion festival!

To register call: 800-328-5227

Email: Suzanne Welch

Donna Maria Regis

Co-founders of ACCORDIONS NOW! Music Festival

Hotel Accommodations

Special Rate -- Only $89 [plus NH tax] per ROOM.  Reserve by July 22, 2011.

Call Marriott Worldwide Reservations 1.800.321.2211.  

Mention ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival at Courtyard Nashua.

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

Alicia Baker's Performances

by Rita Barnea
Alicia BakerAlicia Baker, from Milwaukie, OR, is 19 years old and loves music. She has been playing the accordion since the age of 6, and is also very accomplished on piano and voice. Alicia currently attends Oregon State University, where she is a triple major studying for degrees in music education, piano performance, and vocal performance. Her future dreams include teaching choral music, as well as performing as much as possible on her three instruments.

Accomplishments on the accordion include placing first in multiple accordion competitions, as well as winning the “Happy Hans Open” at the Kimberley International Old-Time accordion competition twice in Canada. She has also placed first in multiple divisions at the Leavenworth International Accordion Competition. More recently, Alicia competed in the National V-Roland Accordion Festival in Los Angeles and won the privilege of representing the USA at the International V-Accordion Roland festival, which took place in Rome, Italy, of November 2009.

Alicia will perform on Monday, July 4th, at the KIOTAC in Canada at 7 PM and on Friday, July 15th, 7 PM, at the AAA Festival Gala Concert in Charleston, SC. She will perform on the Cotati Festival on Saturday, August 20, 12 Noon. On October 13th 7:30 PM, she will play the Chaikin "Concerto for Accordion and Orchestra" with the Corvallis-OSU Symphony Orchestra in Oregon.

Alicia has recorded several CD's of accordion music which are available by contacting her.
For further information:

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

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

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

"The Accordion Needs You" Workshop

by Rita Barnea
An Accordion, What is That?On Thursday morning, July 14th at 9:30 AM, a unique workshop will take place at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston: “The Accordion Needs You! Buzz Treble needs you!” A look into how to use the children’s book, “An Accordion! What is That? Looking at the accordion inside and out "as a tool to promote the accordion and acquire accordion students.

The presenters are: Karen Malan-Uribe, author; Joan Grauman, illustrator; and Mary Tokarski, narrator and accordionist. These three close friends and fellow accordionists combined their special talents to create a delightful children’s book about the joy, the music and the inner workings of their favorite instrument.. The book includes a CD with narration and music.

Karen Malan-Uribe, award-winning author of children’s books, is the author. Celebrated artist, AAA Board member and AAA Historian,Joan Geller Grauman, illustrated the book and created its mascot, an animated honeybee named, “Buzz Treble”. The CD includes a wonderful narration of the book, as well as music beautifully performed by AAA Board member and world renowned concert accordionist, Mary Tokarski.

In the words of American Accordionists' Association (AAA) President, Linda Soley Reed: “What a delightful early reader! Yet, it is comprehensive for the older child as well. It is definitely a unique approach to teaching, not only the workings and complexities of the accordion, but the music as well. The accompanying CD and illustrations are a treasure. This book should be included in every school’s required curriculum.”

The book is intended as an early reader, but it includes music and material that can be appreciated by older children, as well as adults.

Books can be purchased during the AAA Festival. Additionally, copies can be purchased through SqueezinArt for $17.95 plus $2.05 for shipping & handling per book (total of $20). Please send checks to: SqueezinArt, PO Box 25, Frederick, Maryland, 21793-0025
For volume discount (10 copies or more), please send an e-mail to

Photo: Mary Tokarski, Karen Malan-Uribe, Joan Grauman
Mary Tokarski, Karen Malan-Uribe, Joan Grauman

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Frank Marocco Accordion Event -- European Edition, in Spectacular Castelfidardo, Italy

by Joan and Dan Grauman
Photo above: The FMAE-EE Orchestra conducted by Frank Marocco taking a bow at the end of the concert. Below that is the Accordion Museum Museo Internazionale Castelfidardo Tour: Curator recounts history as translator, Elke Ahrenholz, and accordionist from Connecticut, AAA Board member Marilyn O’Neil, listen attentively.

Pictures left: Accordion Monument: Statue commemorating the accordion, featuring noted accordionists including Art Van Damme. Panoramic views of Castelfidardo and the Adriatic Sea.

When the two of us started to plan the first Frank Marocco Accordion Event (FMAE) in 2006, we thought that it would be a one-time event. We never dreamed that it would become a popular annual event and we most certainly did not think that it would ever “go international”. Well, both things happened and we have recently returned to the US after a glorious trip to Castelfidardo, Italy for the first FMAE European Edition (FMAE-EE) that took place June 2-6.

FMAE‐EE was literally 5 days of “Accordion Heaven on Earth”. The energetic, multi‐talented, multilingual Elke Ahrenholz, who planned the event along the lines of its US counterpart, did a masterful job from start to finish. The orchestra of 37 musicians, who gathered to work under the baton of our beloved conductor, composer and arranger, Frank Marocco, consisted of accordionists from the US (California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland and Virginia), Canada, Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Chin and Korea. The orchestra members and their families were treated to fabulous concerts, gorgeous sightseeing tours, a wonderful tour of the accordion museum, “Museo Internazionale della Fisarmonica di Castelfidardo”, a delightful tour of the Victoria accordion factory and, of course, a daily dose of wonderful Italian food!

Jazz great, Frank Marocco, and renowned bandoneon player, Daniele di Bonaventura, performed in the gorgeous, marble-clad San Francesco Cathedral and released their new, absolutely wonderful CD, “Two for the Road”. The following night, the accordion orchestra of gifted young musicians from Italy, “Libertango”, delighted the audience with their incredible talents and flawless program.

The last night was ours. The FMAE-EE orchestra performed at the historic Teatro Astra for the residents of Castelfidardo. We performed Frank’s lovely arrangements and a beautiful piece, “Juntos”, that was composed and arranged for accordion orchestra by Amy Jo Sawyer, who was there as our first chair accordionist to perform it with us.

In spite of the occasional language constraints, we all felt like one big happy family enjoying the breathtakingly beautiful architecture, panoramic views, friendly people, and the “ever-present accordion” that is absolutely everywhere in this storybook town “that builds accordions”.

Picture below: Daily lunch at the picturesque Osteria Da Pippo.

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Stas Venglevski Performs Sofia Gubaidulina's "In Croce"

by Rita Barnea
Stas VenglevskiPhoto above:Yehuda Yannay, Stas Venglevski, Sofia Gubaidulina, Gwen Krosnick

Well known concert artist, Stas Venglevski, performed "In Croce" for bayan and cello on June 10th at the University of Chicago in honor of composer Sofia Gubaidulina's receiving an honorary doctorate from the University of Chicago. The cellist on the program was Gwen Krosnick. It was the first time the University of Chicago awarded a doctorate to someone in the field of music.

World-renowned composer Sofia Gubaidulina was awarded a Doctor of Humane Letters degree. Gubaidulina, who is of Russian and Tatar descent, is known for a prolific body of work that melds Russian, Central Asian and Western influences. A highly-celebrated figure in contemporary music, the prolific Russian composer, Sofia Gubaidulina, has written more extensively for the accordion (mostly for the Russian variant called the bayan) than any other composer, attracted by the living properties of an instrument that "breathes".

Although her singular, haunting style was at odds with the Soviet musical establishment, Gubaidulina gained a devoted following in Russia. In 1985, she was allowed to travel to the West for the first time, where she soon found an equally appreciative audience.

She has received commissions from major ensembles worldwide, including the New York Philharmonic and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. She is perhaps best known for her 1980 violin concerto, the Offertorium and her 2002 Passion and Resurrection of Jesus Christ according to St. John.

She has received numerous honors for her work, including Japan’s Praemium Imperiale, the Russian State Prize, Sweden’s Polar Music Prize, and the Koussevitzky International Recording Award.

Shulamit Ran, the Andrew MacLeish Distinguished Service Professor in Music and the College, presented Gubaidulina at the ceremony.

Stas Venglevski's artistry, dazzling technical command, and sensitivity have brought him increasing acclaim as a virtuoso of the bayan. A two-time first prize winner of bayan competition in the Republic of Moldova, Stas is a graduate of the Russian Academy of Music in Moscow where he received his Masters Degree in Music under the tutelage of the famed Russian bayanist, Friedrich Lips. In 1992 he immigrated to the United States.

Stas' repertoire includes his original compositions, a broad range of classical, contemporary and ethnic music. He has toured extensively as a soloist throughout the former Soviet Union, Canada, Europe, and the United States including numerous performances with Doc Severinsen, Steve Allen and with Garrison Keillor on the Prairie Home Companion Show. Additionally, he has performed with symphony orchestras throughout the United States. He performed the world premiere of Concerto No. 2 by Anthony Galla-Rini and also the world premiere of Bayan and Beyond, composed for Stas by Dan Lawitts.

He is a regular participant of the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra's Arts in Community Education Program (ACE); has done television commercials and performed in theater productions; produced numerous recordings including transcription of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite for bayan as well as one of original compositions. He has published several books of original compositions.

Stas also performs as a member of the A Sta_Sera Duo where he combines talents with accordionist, John Simkus, known primarily for his smooth jazz renditions. Their musical partnership has resulted in a unique repertoire and as a duo they have toured the United States and Europe extensively and collaborated on a CD of original compositions, Seasonings.

For further information:

Sam Falcetti To Present Workshop at ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011

by Rita Barnea
Sam Falcetti will present a workshop, "Secrets of Accordion Fingering: How to Choose the Correct Finger for the Correct Note" at at the 4th Annua Festival
Friday-Saturday, August 12-13, 2011 Nashua Courtyard Marriott Nashua, New Hampshire.

Sam Falcetti is back by popular request! Last year Sam taught how to memorize a song in five minutes. This year he tackles the often thorny topic of correct fingering.If you’ve ever “run out of fingers” or gotten tangled up like a pretzel in the middle of a passage, you need this workshop. Sam will help you avoid these and other fingering problems by teaching you how to choose the correct finger every time.

A graduate of Hartt College of Music, Sam Falcetti is founder and conductor of the Springfield Accordion Orchestra, with performances at the Osaka World’s Fair in Japan, on TV in Italy with Roberta Flack, at the Coupe Mondiale in New Zealand, at Disneyland [CA] and Disney World [FL].

Sam is the founder of Falcetti Music, a five-store chain in Connecticut and Massachusetts. He provides Roland accordion sales and service in New England.

Sam is a professor at Holyoke Community, Westfield State, and Mount Holyoke Colleges. He has presented workshops in Chicago, Connecticut, Florida, and Massachusetts as well as here in New Hampshire. Selected “Man of the Year” by the Springfield Unico Club, his picture has graced the front covers of Music Trades, MMR, and University of Hartford magazines.

Sam Falcetti is a board member of the American Accordionists' Association (AAA) and past president of the Accordion Teachers Association of Massachusetts.

Come to Sam’s Saturday Morning Workshop, August 13th, and Visit Him at His All-Day Vendor Exhibit

For more information:

Future events

Gene Van Accordion Orchestra Presents Benefit Concert

by Rita Barnea
Gene Van Orchestra
On Friday evening, August 5, 2011, the Gene Van Accordion Orchestra, conducted by Gene Van, will perform a benefit concert in South Bend, Indiana, entitled “Accordions Extraordinaire.”

The concert is sponsored by the Michiana Performing Arts Association. Members of the orchestra reside in Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Texas, Florida and South Carolina, and are primarily former students of Gene Van’s.

Joseph Natoli, 1972 American Accordionists' Association (AAA) U.S. Virtuoso Champion and Coupe Mondiale first runner-up and 2008 Grand Prize winner of the first Roland V-Accordion festival, from Delaware, Ohio, will once again be a guest performer with the group.

Jessica Faltot, former student of Gene Van, will present the world premiere of his new composition for solo accordion, "Time is Once Again".

Kenn Baert, 1983 Indiana Accordionists' Association Virtuoso Solo Champion and 2009 Roland V-Accordion Grand Prize winner from Barrington Hills, Illinois, will also be a featured soloist. Kenn is employed by AT& T Services as a software specialist and is married with three children.  Kenn is a former student of Gene Van.  All three soloists, Joe, Jessica and Kenn, will also perform with the orchestra

The purpose of this concert is to raise funds to benefit two very worthy causes. The Climb Project, a group of volunteers consisting of parents and family members of individuals diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder (ADS), is affiliated with the Sonya Ansari Center for Autism at LOGAN and is dedicated to promoting awareness of this disorder and assisting in fund raising efforts to provide specialized training for local parents and educators facing the challenges of helping individuals with autism. This effort is spearheaded by Mr. Van’s daughter and son-in-law, Lisa and Vince DelPrete, whose 11-year-old son, Mateo, was diagnosed with autism at the age of 3.

In addition, funds are being raised to support the Mennonite Disaster Service, a volunteer network of Anabaptist churches that responds to those affected by disasters in the United States and Canada by assisting with cleanup, repair and rebuilding of houses and helps to restore lives. With the numerous weather-related disasters in recent months, this organization has been extremely busy.

The Gene Van Accordion Orchestra has performed many benefit concerts in the past supporting various not-for-profit organizations and plans to continue this effort in the future.

The concert will be held at the Kern Road Mennonite Church located at 18211 Kern Road in South Bend, Indiana, and will start at 7:00 p.m. The concert is free and open to the public.

If you would like to assist one or both of these organizations by making a donation, please make payments to:
The Sonya Ansari Center for Autism ‘Climb Project’ or to the Mennonite Disaster Service and mail to the address below:
Mrs. Joyce Schultz, Treasurer,
Michiana Performing Arts Association
2809 Northwood,
Mishawaka, Indiana 46545

This benefit concert will be recorded and made available for purchase on DVD and CD at a later date. Proceeds from the sales will be directed to the Sonya Ansari Center for Autism ‘Climb Project’ and to the Mennonite Disaster Service.

If you would like to place an order, or have any questions regarding the upcoming concert, please contact Gene Van at (574) 262-0212, or on line at

Voci Armoniche

Martin Accordion Orchestra on the East Coast in July

by Rita Barnea
Martin Accordion Orchestra
The Martin Music Center Accordion Orchestra is an internationally recognized accordion orchestra comprised of advanced accordion students from Martin Music Center in Fullerton, CA. They will be featured at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston, July 13-17. Under the direction of Randy Martin, they will perform on July 14th, 7 PM, at the Cabaret Night.

The Martin Accordion Orchestra is a group of exceptionally talented and hard-working young musicians. In the past, the group has performed at the White House and Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C., the Coupe Mondiale in 2007 and 2009 in New Zealand, and has played on multiple television broadcasts.

This accordion orchestra is a product of the Martin Accordion and Music Center, owned and operated by Randall Martin and his wife, Sandy. The 17-member group, made up of 13 accordion players, a piano player, a drummer and two percussionists, performed in the East Room on Dec. 23, 2010 for one of the many White House Christmas events staged in Washington D.C.

Sandra Martin, administrator of the Martin Music Center, said the orchestra was invited to play during Bill Clinton's presidency, and also went during George W. Bush's first term.

For 30 years, the Fullerton-based orchestra has toured the world, performing intricately arranged jazz and classical music piece for audiences ranging from U.S. Presidents to the best accordion players in the world, most recently the 2009 Coup Mondiale International Accordion Competition in Auckland, New Zealand, 2010 in Washington, DC. They performed at the Disneyland Community Arts Showcase in January 2011.

“These are all very excellent accordion players and students,” said Sandy Martin, who launched the school 30 years ago with her husband, Randy. Most of the orchestra members are in high school and college and all take their instruments, and playing very seriously—which starts from the top down."

“It’s been our life for 30 years,” said Sandy Martin. “It’s been an amazing thing to be a part of and what makes it so amazing is our kids. One thing we hear a great deal from parents is that we are very professional in the way we teach our kids. Our standards are very high and parents and students like that.”

The Martin Music Center Orchestra plays all genres of music, specializing in classical pieces and jazz standards. The orchestra is guided by Randy Martin, music major at Long Beach State, who met his wife while both were teaching at other schools. “He is very knowledgeable about music and very well known in accordion circles,” Sandy Martin said. “And since his favorite music is jazz, that is what the orchestra excels at, along with classical musical which is transcribed for the accordion. At the Coupe Mondiale in 2009, the orchestra performed the overture to Wagner’s “Rienzi” opera, which Randy Martin transcribed for the accordion.

Conductor Randy Martin will also present a workshop at the AAA Festival on Saturday, July 16th, 9:30 AM, called Harmony and Rhythm for Pop Music. He will also perform during the Banquet on Saturday evening, July 16th, 6 PM. Additionally, he will be a guest speaker at the dinner honoring Joan Sommers.

For further information:

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

2011 Summer Concert Schedule of Rita Davidson

by Harley Jones
Rita Davidson, USA EditorRita Davidson has a busy summer of promoting and performing the music of composer Eugene Ettore commemorating his 90th birthday. Rita Davidson concerts/workshops "A 90th Anniversary Appreciation of Life and Music of Eugene Ettore (1921-1985)" showcase his unique compositions many of which are published by Deffner Music Publications and those yet to be published, to soon be available on the website.

Rita Davidson, accordionist, educator, editor, and curator, studied with the noted composer. An honors Music Education graduate of the University of Connecticut and Ettore’s protégé, Rita Davidson has presented his music and life story in concerts and workshops throughout the United States. She has performed his “Manhattan Concerto” with the Westmont Accordion Orchestra, Bloomfield Symphony Orchestra, Roxborough Symphony Orchestra, and the New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra.

This year, to commemorate the 90th anniversary of Ettore’s birth, Rita is releasing a CD of his virtuoso compositions. To further raise his profile as a composer and keep his memory alive, she has been developing and is curator of the Eugene Ettore Memorial Website, whose expressly stated purpose is “preserving the memory and works of Eugene Ettore, composer, arranger, accordionist, inventor, teacher and more!” If you have information (Photos, articles, etc.) about Eugene Ettore, please send it to Rita who will scan and return it to you promptly.

Rita uses her accordion extensively to educate and expose children to the possibilities of the instrument. As a Pre-K to Grade 5 vocal music teacher in the West Orange, New Jersey public schools, Rita uses the accordion in all of her classes as well as to accompany her chorus, music festivals, and other programs.

Outside the classroom, Rita runs a children’s birthday party business in which she utilizes the accordion to entertain young people. The instrument serves as an enjoyable, portable means to please her young audiences, while at the same time subtly educating them.

In 2008 Rita was invited to become the editor of, a valuable online publication covering artists, concerts, festivals, competitions and other accordion-related events taking place throughout North America. Rita Davidson is a member of the Governing Board of the American Accordionists' Association.

Her concert schedule is:

1. June 27 West Orange,NJ, AABJ&D
2. July 10 WMAS, Maryland
3. July 14 AAA Festival, Charleston, SC
4. July 18th Senior Citizens, JCC, West Orange, NJ
5. July 31st AAA Master Class and Concert Series, NYC
6. August 13th ACCORDIONS NOW! Nashua, New Hampshire

For more information on location and times:

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

First Wallace Accordion Festival in Idaho, August 11-14

by Rita Barnea
Wallace Accordion Festival Poster
The Historic Wallace Accordion Festival will be held in Wallace, Idaho on August 11-14, 2011. This will be the first accordion event ever held in Wallace but certainly not the last!

Some of the well known featured performers will be:
Cory Pesaturo, Recent winner of the 2011 International VII Primus Ikaalinen Accordion Competition in Finland
Big Lou
The King of Rock 'n Roll Accordion Bruce Gassman
Andy Mirkovich

There will be a parade, workshops with the above performers, open stage playing, concerts, parties and a pancake breakfast!

For more information contact:
Historic Chamber of Commerce
10 River Street
Wallace, Idaho 83873
Phone/Fax: 208-753-7151


Guy Klucevsek Composes Music for KO Festival

by Rita Barnea
Guy KlucevsekAccordionist Guy Klucevsek has composed music for "Industrious Angels" to be performed July 8-10, Friday and Saturday at 8 PM, Sunday at 4 PM. It is a solo hand-crafted-story-spinning-shadow-puppet-memory-play-with-music evoking the secret creative lives of women, mother/daughter bloodlines, and the ghost of Emily Dickinson.In a shadowed attic, crammed with curio cabinets, work tables, chests and drawers (containers for mementos and unmentionables), a daughter searches for what it is that ties together her mother, herself, and an elusive poet.

A story about the crafting of stories, INDUSTRIOUS ANGELS was conceived by actor/creator Laurie McCants on a visit to Emily Dickinson’s home, where the poet wrote, in secret, the almost 1800 poems that were found after her death. The story unfolds through puppetry, paper-cutting, music, movement, light and dark, and the weaving together of words.  It is a dance of the hands honoring women’s handiwork:  mending, preserving, ordering, adorning, writing, hiding.

Developed at the Ko Festival of Performance in Amherst, Massachusetts, and the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble in Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, INDUSTRIOUS ANGELS is hand-made by Laurie McCants, in collaboration with director/lighting designer Sabrina Hamilton, scenic designer F. Elaine Williams, and composer Guy Klucevsek, who has created a  haunting score with piano, violin, accordion, and toy piano.

An elite group of musicians, from as far afield as Vienna, have gathered to record Klucevsek’s score for INDUSTRIOUS ANGELS. They include Todd Reynolds on violin, pianist and toy piano virtuoso Isabel Ettenauer, and the composer on accordion.

Guy Klucevsek is the recipient of a 2010 United States Artists Collins Fellowship, an unrestricted $50,000 award given to distinguished American artists each year.

Solo performances include the Ten Days on the Island and Adelaide Festivals in Australia, the Berlin Jazz Festival, New Music America, Serious Fun! at Lincoln Center, Bang on a Can, Spoleto Festival/USA, and the children’s television show Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.

Guy has also performed and/or recorded with Laurie Anderson, Anthony Braxton, Anthony Coleman, Bill Frisell, Fred Frith, Robin Holcomb, the Kronos Quartet, Natalie Merchant, Pauline Oliveros, Present Music, Bobby Previte, Relâche, Jubilant Sykes, and John Zorn. Other artists who have recorded his compositions include Dave Douglas, Carol Emanuel, Relache, Aki Takahashi, Margaret Leng Tan, and Twisted Tutu.

He was an original member of Dave Douglas’s band, Charms of the Night Sky, with whom he recorded three albums and toured throughout North America and Europe.

In 1987, Klucevsek commissioned Polka From the Fringe, a collection of 32 post-modern two-steps by such composers as Carl Finch, Fred Frith, Christian Marclay and Elliott Sharp, which he presented at the 1988 Next Wave Festival, and has performed around the world with his group, Ain’t Nothin’ But A Polka Band.

In 1996, Klucevsek formed The Accordion Tribe, an international line-up of composer/accordionists Maria Kalaniemi (Finland), Lars Hollmer (Sweden), Bratko Bibic (Slovenia), Otto Lechner (Austria), and Klucevsek (USA). They have released three recordings on the Intuition label, and are the subjects of the Stefan Schwietert documentary film, Accordion Tribe: Music Travels , which was released in theaters across Europe in 2004-2005, and featured at film festivals in North America.

Klucevsek has released 20 recordings as soloist/leader, including  Polka Dots & Laser Beams and  Who Stole the Polka?, which were chosen as the best recordings of 1992 by John Schaefer on the nationally-syndicated radio program New Sounds, and  Transylvanian Softwear, which was cited as a 1995 Recording of Special Merit in Stereo Review. You can also hear him on John Williams's scores for the Steven Spielberg films  The Terminal, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and  Munich. He has performed on Broadway in Fiddler on the Roof, Victor/Victoria and Piaf.

KO Theater Works, INC. was founded in 1991 by a core group of artists seeking to shed traditional structures for creating and producing performance as the first step towards creating alternatives, and is named for the 49th hexagram of the I CHING, the ancient Chinese Book of Changes. “Ko,” or “Revolution” can be visualized as a shedding of skin, a sloughing off of the old.

Ko is dedicated to fostering innovative artistic collaborations in order to create work that draws from both comic and tragic traditions, mixing them with innovative uses of design and technology, in an atmosphere conducive to deep collaboration. KO creates and presents pieces that are a springboard for community dialogue, ones that consider themes and issues vital to our civic and personal lives.

The performance will take place in the Holden Theatra, Amherst College, Amherst, MA. Box office opens July 4. 413-542-3750 E mail:

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Walter Kasprzyk to Perform in Charleston

by Rita Barnea
Walter KasprzykWalter Kasprzyk will perform Thursday, July 14th on the 11:30 AM Luncheon Concert and the 7 PM Cabaret Concert at the 2011 AAA Festival in Charleston, SC.

Walter, a Connecticut native, now residing on the Emerald Coast of Northwest Florida, is of Polish and Russian descent. He began his musical studies on the accordion at the age of 8 with his brother, Michael Fernino, of Fernino Music Studios, Ansonia, CT.

He competed in local, state and national competitions throughout his early years, and was a winner of numerous trophies & awards, including two-time winner of the Connecticut State accordion championship. He then went on to play in many bands and orchestras including the Accordion Symphony Society of New York (under the baton of Maestro Joseph Biviano), and the Accordion Pops of New Jersey (directed by Daniel Desiderio).

After studying music at the University of Bridgeport, CT, Walter became part of the internationally famous K Trio with his two sisters Mary Tokarski and Julie Kasprzyk Cardona, which performed at various concerts throughout the world and released CD available on the K Trio website.

He has also performed Dominick Argento's "Valentino Dances" with the Charleston Symphony of South Carolina, and is a regular performer for the Florida Accordion Association SMASH, various functions of the South East Accordion Association, and does occasional performances at the American Accordionists' Association (AAA).

He has recorded a CD, "Egress" which is available for purchase.

For further information:

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

Great American Squeeze Off in Detroit, Michigan

by Rita Barnea
The Great American Squeeze Off Accordion Festival is a two day mini-convention for people who love the accordion. Organized by Corky Bennett, it takes place in Detroit, Michigan on July 27-28 at the Concorde Inn in Clinton Township.

The event does not have workshops, seminars or competitions. It is based on fun, accordion camaraderie and social networking. The professionals there are available to answer questions and offer advice. There is also jamming. Please bring your accordion.

There will also be a special tribute to the late great Tony Dannon on Thursday, July 28th in the evening.

Cory Pesaturo, who just won the 2011 Sata-Häme Soi Festival International VII Primus Ikaalinen TV Accordion Competition in Finland, and Dick Contino, well known accordionist, will be featured performers. Additional performers will be Joe Cairo, Al Battistelli, John Shollack, David Passalacqua, Walt Lipiec, Chet Wisnoski, Joe Cairo, and Corky Bennett.

Cory and Dick Contino, the two "rebels of the accordion world", will finally perform together at a concert in Detroit, Michigan on July 27th and 28th.  

Cory says that he and Dick have been wanting to perform together for 12 years, and this will be a great moment. Dick has been a great friend and huge inspiration to Cory from the onset.  Additionally, Dick is the reason Cory's father played the accordion, which is the reason Cory plays. Every generation can enjoy playing the accordion.

For more information:
Call: 775-351-7019

Titano Accordion Company

Paul Stein at the Seminars

by William Schimmel
Paul SteinPaul Stein, accordionist, singer and political satirist will make his 17th appearance at the American Accordionists' Association (AAA) Master Class and Concert Series at the Tenri Cultural Institute in NYC.

On Saturday afternoon, July 30, he will give a workshop on “Performing for the Homeless” and he will relate his experiences entertaining the homeless in New York City for over 25 years. 

His workshops have always been hits at the Seminars, especially his workshop on strolling. This has culminated in an internet article: “The Ten Commandments of Strolling” – the most widely read article on the subject. Although geared for accordionists, other instrumentalists have also benefited from it.

On Saturday evening he will open the concert program with a collection of political satirical songs concerning Oil, the New York City Mayor and religious intolerance. 

Paul Stein has been a participant in the Seminars every single year since the first one. A retired lawyer, Paul has been a political activist and union leader for almost all of his adult life. He enjoys performing Klezmer music and Yiddish songs for diverse audiences.

He has been heard many times on radio and TV playing his accordion at various holiday events and rallies. He radiates warmth, intelligence and compassion in all of his performances and yet still maintains that satirical bite that we all love. Paul is a Neupauer Conservatory Order of the Shield graduate. He continues his studies to this day with Dr. William Schimmel. 

For more information:

Voci Armoniche

Evan Harlan to be featured at ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011

by Rita Barnea
Evan Harlan will perform on Saturday Evening, August 13th,at the ACCORDIONS NOW! 2011 Festival, Friday-Saturday, August 12-13 at the Nasha Courtyard Marriott, Nashua, New Hampshire

Evan Harlan, accordionist, pianist, composer, and music director, has recorded and performed internationally with several jazz and “world music” ensembles including the Boston Pops with Amanda Palmer, Itzhak Perlman’s In the Fiddler’s House, the Klezmer Conservatory Band, and the Von Trapp Singers.

His own quartet, Andromeda, plays original music with the flavors of Americana, tango, gypsy, and other passionate traditions. In addition to performing concerts in the New England area, Andromeda was the house band for the American Repertory Theater’s 2003 production of Snow in June.They were awarded the 2006 Independent Music Award for the song Norwegian Slip. And their tune Coach  was also a finalist.

From 1995 to 2000, Evan’s group Excelsior played unorthodox arrangements of 20th-century composers’ works. Excelsior’s CD Declassified has been featured on a number of radio programs, including WGBH Radio’s internationally distributed “Art of the States,” WGBH/BBC’s “The World,” as well as WBUR’s “The Connection” and “Here & Now.”

Evan Harlan is the recipient of a 2001 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Grant in Music Composition. He has scored numerous works for film, dance and theater. In addition he has played on the soundtracks of Sidney Lumet’s A Stranger Among Us and John Sayles’ Lone Star.

As a conductor of musical theater, he has led Snow in June and Shlemiel the First at the American Repertory Theater and Fiorello at Brandeis University.Evan Harlan is on the Contemporary Improvisation faculty at the New England Conservatory.

For further information:

Call to register for the 2011 ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival:
800-328-5227 or email:

Accordion Jazz Chords

Brent Buswell to Perform at 2012 ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival

by Rita Barnea
Brent BuswellAccordionist Brent Buswell will be a featured performer at the 5th Annual ACCORDIONS NOW! Festival in Nashua, New Hampshire on Friday evening, August 17th.

Brent Buswell has played the accordion since 1993 and, from a young age, has been recognized as a virtuoso player. He enjoys performing a wide variety of music, including jazz, polkas, Scandinavian, novelty numbers, marches, Christian, and American standards. He especially enjoys playing the music of great accordion composers such as Pietro Frosini, Charles Magnante, and Pietro Deiro.

Brent has been a featured artist for many Scandinavian and Finnish events, including the Swedish Midsummer Festival (Cape Cod, Mass.), numerous FinnFunn Weekends, and the Scandinavian Midsummer Festival in Astoria, Oreg. in 2002 and 2005. He has been a headline performer for national FinnFests in Gorham, Maine (1998); Philadelphia, Pa. (2001); and the 2005 FinnGrandFest in Marquette, Mich. In March 2003, he had the honor of performing at the Finnish Embassy in Washington, D.C., with New York accordionist Bert Stromholm. Brent was selected as the 2008 Finlandia Foundation “Performer of the Year,” with more than fifty performances throughout the county, including a featured performance at the 2008 FinnFest in Duluth, Minn.

Brent has toured throughout the country with the Stratton Mountain Boys from Vermont, has been a guest performer with the Grammy-winning "Polka King" Jimmy Sturr Orchestra and performed at accordion conventions throughout the country. He has also performed at Scandinavian celebrations in Oregon, Maine, Texas, Michigan and other states. Brent was featured on the Sally Jesse Raphael TV show. He also has played at Disney World and at the Finnish Embassy in Washington DC and has recorded three CDs.

Brent was graduated from the Berklee College of Music in 2003 with a bachelor’s degree in music. During his time at Berklee, he also studied piano, which has become his second instrument.

His wife, Crista, is a professional pianist and they often perform a wide variety of popular, folk, and classical pieces for accordion and piano.


July Meeting for Long Island Accordion Alliance

by Dominic Karcic
Long Island Accordion Alliance Logo
Long Island Accordion AllianceTuesday, June 21st,, 2011 saw a return visit of the Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) to the Village Lanterne in Lindenhurst, Long Island. Once again the Alliance packed this German restaurant with accordion music lovers. Close to one-hundred people crammed this small unique ethnic establishment.

The accordionists participating in the evening festivities were Ernie Barry, Joe Campo, John Custie, Charlie Fontana, Phil Franzese, Dominic Karcic, Ray Oreggia, Phil Prete, John Stampfel, John Weber, Mike Zeppetella and also vocalist Adrienne Autovino.

The Alliance has been proving since its origin last August that there are accordion music lovers on Long Island and they will support venues that feature “our beloved instrument.”

The next meeting of Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) will be on Tuesday, July 5, 2011 – 7PM at:

La Villini Restaurant
288 Larkfield Road.
East Northport, NY 11731
631 – 261 - 6344

So, come on down! Bring your accordion. Have a great meal, enjoy the music and have some fun!
Reservations are recommended.

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

Will Holshouser to Perform at the AAA Seminars

by William Schimmel
Will HolshouserWill Holshouser, eminent jazz accordionist, will perform at the 2011 Seminars sponsored by The American Accordionists' Association. Will's 15th appearance at the Seminars will take place on July 31 at 7 pm at the Tenri Cultural Institute. He will play a solo set.

He has been hailed “King of Downtown Squeezers” and has made a large niche for himself in the New York Jazz and World Music Community as well as the global community.

His trio is in high demand at major international music festivals and he appears regularly with artists such as Regina Carter, David Krakauer, Matt Munisteri's Musette Explosion and many others.

Will graduated from Wesleyan College where he studied composition with Anthony Braxton and is a recipient of The Neupauer Conservatory Order of the Shield Diploma under the tutorship of Dr. William Schimmel.

The Seminars
Walton the Imperial: Crowned
43A West 13 St – between 5 and 6 Ave
reservations and info - 212-876-0827

The Seminars – The American Accordionists' Association Master Class and Concert Series is moderated and curated by Dr. William Schimmel.
For more information:

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Jordan Rody, Canadian Accordionist

by Rita Barnea
Jordan RodyWhether he is performing as a soloist, as a frontman with his band, or as a sideman with another band, Jordan Rody takes great pride in his performances providing great entertainment for any occasion. This multi-instrumentalist and vocalist plays piano accordion, guitar, and bass guitar. Jordan is an energetic performer who appeals to all ages and audiences.

Jordan's passion for music began when he was very young. His biggest musical inspiration and influence has been his grandfather, Mike Kushneryk. Mike has performed with numerous polka bands, including The Happy Roamin' Rangers and The Cotton Pickers, and he is one of the founders of the Grammy-nominated polka band The Western Senators. Mike gave Jordan his first accordion and spent countless hours teaching him. Jordan feels that he owes his success to the wonderful help of his grandfather. Jordan's influences also include America's Polka King, Frankie Yankovic; and Canada's Polka King, Walter Ostanek.

Recently Jordan had the opportunity to perform at the 2011 Magnificent River Rats Festival July 1st, 2011 in Athabasca, AB where he shared the stage with Canadian country stars such as Craig Moritz, Hey Romeo, Jason Blaine, and Dean Brody. In March of 2011, Jordan felt honored to be a part of Calvin Vollrath's 18th CD Release Party at the Shell Theatre in Fort Saskatchewan, AB. The entire concert has been released on DVD and is available for purchase. Calvin is one of the premier fiddle players in North America.

Jordan has performed across Canada in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario. He has won awards at the prestigious Kimberley International Old Time Accordion Championships and numerous other events. Jordan has opened for Canadian recording artists such as Eli Barsi and Tracy Millar, and performed for capacity crowds at the Leavenworth Oktoberfest in Leavenworth, Washington with "The New Kid In Town" Johnny Koenig. It doesn't stop there for this young phenom in the polka world, so watch out for him!

Jordan will perform at various Safeway locations throughout Edmonton, AB for "A Taste of Edmonton" July 21st-23rd, 25th-30th.

Upcoming Performances:
July 21 Edmonton, AB, Safeway Pancake Breakfast
Sir Winston Churchill Square - 7:00-10:00AM
July 22 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake Breakfast
Bonnie Doon (8330-82 Ave) - 7:30-10:30AM
July 23 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake Breakfast
The Grange,2534 Guardian Road,7:30AM-July 25 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake Breakfas
Meadowlark (8720-156 St) - 7:30AM-10:30AM
July 26 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake,Breakfast
Capilano. 5004-98 Ave, 7:30-10:30AM
July 27 Edmonton, AB, Safeway Pancake Breakfast
Westmount ,111 Ave & Groad Rd,7:30 AM
July 28 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake Breakfast
Heritage (2304-109 St) - 7:30AM-10:30AM
July 29 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake Breakfast
Northgate (9499-137 Ave) - 7:30AM-10:30AM
July 30 Edmonton, AB,Safeway Pancake Breakfast
Palisades (12950-137 Ave) - 7:30AM-10:30AM
August 26 Dryden, ON, Dryden Fall Fair
August 27 Dryden, ON, Dryden Fall Fair
October 27 Sherwood Park, AB, Summerwood Village

For further information:
Phone: 1 (780) 980-3722
© 2022 Accordion USA. All rights reserved. To comment on these pages, e-mail the webmaster.