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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Jul-2024
Previous News | Past News Index


Titano Accordion Company

Highlights

Editor's Note:
AAA Festival Schedule Released, Conshohocken - PA
Accordionists & Teachers Guild Festival in Kansas City, July 23 to 27, 2024
William Schimmel and Elliott Sharp Release New Album: “Lowdown”
2025 National Accordion (NAA) Convention, March 13-15, 2025, Texas
Gilbert Reyes Inducted into Conjunto Hall of Fame - Texas
Mirco Patarini & String Quintet to Perform at ATG Festival July 25
Dallas Vietty: Guest Artist at AAA Festival July 12- 14
Stas Venglevski: Featured Performer at ATG Festival in Kansas City, M)
New England Digital Accordion Orchestra Performing July Summer Concerts
86th AAA Festival to Feature Joe Natoli
Dr. William Schimmel 30th Anniversary 2024 Accordion Seminars
The Accordion Seminars - Dr. William Schimmel

Voci Armoniche

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

NYC PS 203Q Presents Accordion Concert with Cory Pesaturo
Latest Expansion of AAA Commissioned Composers Series of Articles - USA
Composers Concordance Presents
Essay: The Ethical Accordion by Janice Lavoie
Bayou Brothers Perform at Accordion Lovers Society International
Cory Pesaturo Conquers June!
Italian American Variety Show
Western Swing Jamboree, Brauntex Theatre - Texas

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Future events

Cotati Festival August 17 & 18
Scythian 2025 String Break Cruise – North America
Yakima Corrido Festival - USA


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

Highlights


PANcordion

Editor's Note:

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
July 4th poster
The July www.accordionusa.com news is online now! Wishing you all a Happy 4th of July! Time for fireworks, celebrations, and accordions! Please email me at Ritabelll@aol.com with details of your upcoming live rehearsals, festivals or performances so we can let accordionists and enthusiasts around the world know the positive news about our beloved instrument.

Read the USA news this month and every month for new album releases, live concerts, competitions and future events. It is exciting to see the accordion world expanding every day!

Continue your practicing, taking lessons, and how about performing for friends and family?

Enjoy the summer!

Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

AAA Festival Schedule Released, Conshohocken - PA

by Frank Busso Jnr, AAA President
AAA Header
Click each image to see full size
Guest artists include (alphabetical order):
- AAA 2024 Festival Orchestra conducted by Frank Busso Sr.
- AAA Junior Festival Orchestra conducted by Joanna Darrow
- Nikolay Bine
- Busso Festival Orchestra conducted by Frank Busso Jr.
- Joe Natoli
- Dallas Vietty Ensemble
- Hanzhi Wang

Registration, Tickets, and Payment
Use the following form to register for the festival and to purchase tickets: 2024AAARegistration.pdf

Payments can be made by check or online through the AAA’s secure checkout page: AAA Shopping Cart

Gala Banquet
One of the festival’s flagship events is the Gala Banquet on Saturday night. This year’s banquet will feature the 2024 AAA Festival Orchestra conducted by Frank Busso Sr., as well as an ensemble performance led by Dallas Vietty.

Further information at: AAAFestival

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

Accordionists & Teachers Guild Festival in Kansas City, July 23 to 27, 2024

by Marty McIntyre and Mary Ann Covone
Click each poster to see full size
Joan SommersKansas City's vibrant music scene is set to take center stage in a whole new way as it welcomes the Accordionists & Teachers Guild (ATG) for its annual Festival from July 23 to 27, 2024. While the city is renowned for its rich and diverse musical heritage, this event promises to transform it into a global mecca for accordion enthusiasts and music lovers alike.

Spanning five days of festivities, the ATG Festival will showcase the incredible versatility and artistry of the accordion, drawing participants and performers from not only the United States and Canada but from around the world. Audiences can expect to be treated to a breathtaking array of performances that will redefine their perceptions of the accordion.

The evening concerts will begin Wednesday, July 24th, with Stas Venglevski premiering a new composition he wrote for Joan Cochran Sommers followed by Das Kollektive Duo (flute and accordion) from Austria. Thursday evening will feature the UMKC Accordion Ensemble directed by Joan Sommers, Mirco Patarini (President of the Confédération Internationale Des Accordéonistes), and Nikolay Bine, jazz accordionist from Canada.

Friday evening will be an evening of Tango and Fusion. Bridge and Wolak (Dr. Michael Bridge on accordion and Kornel Wolak on clarinet) will lead off with a concert of classical, jazz and world music fusing various genres of music to create a life-affirming concert full of beauty, virtuosity and humor. Next, Grayson Masefield will be joined by a group of prominent Kansas City musicians, “Ensemble Iberica,” to present an all-tango program.

The Festival will culminate on Saturday evening with the incredible ATG Festival Orchestra, conducted by Joan Cochran Sommers. Among other works, the orchestra will premier two new works commissioned by the ATG. The first is composed by Gorka Hermosa entitled "Oparoa", which means in the Basque language “Truly full” (referencing the “truly full life’ that Professor Joan C. Sommers has had, giving so much to the accordion world in America). The second commissioned piece is "Eternal" composed by Ian Watson (United Kingdom) in honor of Joan C. Sommers’ 90th birthday.

"The ATG Festival is more than just a celebration of the accordion; it's a testament to the instrument's enduring appeal and its ability to transcend cultural boundaries," says Mary Ann Covone, president of the ATG. "We're thrilled to bring together accordionists and enthusiasts from across the globe to share in the joy and excitement of this special Festival honoring our Joan Sommers.”

Beyond the captivating performances, the festival will also feature workshops, networking opportunities for accordionists of all levels, an accordion petting zoo for youngsters looking to learn about accordions, sessions geared toward music educators and will feature the World Accordion Cup competition. Each evening will include concerts at the UMKC - White Recital Hall.

Whether you're a seasoned accordion aficionado or simply curious to explore the instrument's vast potential, the ATG Festival in Kansas City promises an unforgettable experience for all who attend. This is one NOT TO BE MISSED.

Picture below: UMKC Community Accordion Ensemble

For more information, please visit www.atgaccordions.com.
UMKC Community Accordion Ensemble

Titano Accordion Company

William Schimmel and Elliott Sharp Release New Album: “Lowdown”

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Click each picture to see full size
Longtime collaborators William Schimmel and Elliott Sharp meet again in the studio for a set of dynamic improvisations originating in the lower frequencies of the audio spectrum.

On this album, Bill Schimmel is playing the bass accordion and E# the double neck console steel guitar. These recordings display virtuosic playing, unique sonic dimensions, and sardonic humor.

There's no Bandcamp Fridays until September so zOaR is offering this Digital album for $9 download and includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more.

Credits: Released June 21, 2024:
William Schimmel - bass accordion
Elliott Sharp - double neck console steel guitar

Recorded and mixed at Studio zOaR - NYC, April 27, 2024
Mastered at Studio zOaR - May 9, 2024

Photographs by Lila Sharp
Published 2024 by Studio Muse Productions - BMI & zOaR Music - BMI
Artwork by Michael Schimmel
Design by Janene Higgins

For further information: accordionbill@gmail.com

Voci Armoniche

2025 National Accordion (NAA) Convention, March 13-15, 2025, Texas

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
NAA Save the Date
NAA logoNational Accordion Association (NAA) Board of Directors and Convention Manager are saying: “Now is the time to Save the Date for the 2025 National Accordion Convention.”

The 2025 National Accordion Convention is being held at:
Hilton Garden Inn - 785 SH 121 - Lewisville, Texas, a hotel 8 miles North of DFW Airport, TX on March 13-15, 2025.

For complete information as the 2025 agenda is being developed, visit the NAA website: accordions.com/naa

The 2024 National Accordion Convention that was held in the Dallas, Texas, area was successful!

For evidence, view the more than 200 pictures and 50 videos that the conventioneers are sharing with the accordion world. True, it was not a perfect convention. Perfection is reserved for the next life.

You can view the results of the “Rate My Convention” survey on the July 1st revised 2025 NAA website.
Survey, Videos, Mkt Plans, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/c2024Images1.html
Dining & Concert images, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/c2024Images2.html
Workshop/Candid Images, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/c2024Images3.html

2025 Convention Information
2025 Landing Page, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/cLandingPage.html
Registration Info, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/cRegistration.html
Daily Workshops, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/cWorkshops.html
Music/Handout Material, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/cHandOuts.html
Public Concerts, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/xcConcerts.html
Daily Schedule, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/cSchedule.html
Vendor/Dealer, view at https://www.accordions.com/naa/cVendorsDealers.html

Accordion Jazz Chords

Gilbert Reyes Inducted into Conjunto Hall of Fame - Texas

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Gilbert Reyes
Reyes Hall of FameGilbert Reyes Jr., has been selected for induction into the Texas Conjunto Music Hall of Fame as part of the 2024 class.

This prestigious honor recognizes Gilbert’s long dedication to the regional Conjunto music genre, and the substantial impact he has made within this vibrant musical tradition. Gilbert Reyes is the Hohner Accordion U.S. Brand Manager.

The induction ceremony will take place on July 27th, 2024, at the ABC Event Center in San Benito, Texas, USA. Attendees will enjoy a live performance by conjunto pioneer Ruben Garza y Su Conjunto, presented by Betancourt Ventures LLC Productions-Wrecking Crew Jams Dance Hall Series.

PANcordion

Mirco Patarini & String Quintet to Perform at ATG Festival July 25

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Mirco PatariniMirco Patarini and string quartet will perform on July 25, 2024 for the ATG Festival in Kansas City, MOMirco was born in Spoleto (Italy). In 1978 he began studying music at the CDMI (Centro Didattico Musicale Italiano) in Spoleto.

In 1981 he ranked first in the Italian Pre-Championship of Castelfidardo, obtaining the right to access the 31st CMA Accordion World Trophy, where he was the youngest participant. Between 1983 and 1985 he won the Italian Pre-Chamionship three times, so that he could compete for the World Trophy in Caracas (Venezuela), Caldas de Rahina (Portugal), and La Chaux-de-Fonds (Switzerland), where he won 1st prize in 1984.

His concert activity ranges from classical repertoire to modern music; from acoustic to electronic and MIDI accordion; from solo performance to concerts for accordion and orchestra, reaching 69 countries around the world. His career boasts many important collaborations with famous artists such as Luciano Pavarotti and Nicola Piovani in the most prestigious theaters in the world.

He is the President of “Scandalli Accordions” company, one of the historical and most prestigious accordion factories in the world.

Since 2007 he has been the Artistic Director of the IAC (Italian Accordion Culture) association, Italian Premier Voting Member of the CIA. For years he has been the Italian juror for the CIA Accordion Coupe Mondiale.

Since 2021 Mirco has been the President of Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA) a member of IMC-UNESCO.

Mirco will be joined by a String Quintet who are all members of the Kansas City Symphony. They include
Alex Shum, Violin; Anne-Marie Brown, Violin; Jesse Yukimura, Viola; Lawrence Figg, Cell0; Nils Aardahl
Bass.

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

Dallas Vietty: Guest Artist at AAA Festival July 12- 14

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Click picture to see full size
Dallas Vietty will be a workshop presenter, featured soloist at the Festival Luncheon and perform with his “Trio Called Leonard” at the 2024 86th AAA Festival in West Conshohocken July 12 - 14, 2024.

Dallas’ unique style comes from his background in the American jazz tradition, as well as study and immersion in the European swing tradition of Django Reinhardt (Gypsy Jazz) and French accordionists.

Dallas remains very active on the East Coast concert and festival scene. His groups have performed at some of the top U.S. festivals including: TEDx Philly, Djangoary Festival. As a sideman his performances have taken him to legendary venues like: on Broadway as the accordionist in Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish 2019/2020, For Djangofest Northwest with Rhythm Future Quarter 2019, The Iridium NYC, BB King’s Time Square, Dizzy's Club at Lincoln Center, and the Philadelphia Kimmel Center, many performances across the beautiful city New Orleans, and performances in concert halls in Auvergne region of France in 2022.

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Stas Venglevski: Featured Performer at ATG Festival in Kansas City, M)

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Click each picture to see full size
Stas Venglevski will perform at the ATG Festival on Wednesday, July 24, 2024 in Kansas City, MO.

Stas Venglevski shares, "I will be premiering my latest composition “Poems of Life & Love” for solo accordion dedicated to Joan Cochran Sommers in celebration of her 90th birthday. Eight poems reflect her life and my appreciation for her tremendous contribution to the accordion world. The date of the premiere will be July 24, 2024 in Kansas City, MO at the Accordionists & Teachers Guild, International festival. Can’t wait! Book with CD will be released that day."

His artistry, dazzling technical command, and sensitivity have brought Stanislav, "Stas," Venglevski, a native of the Republic of Moldova increasing acclaim as a virtuoso performer. 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 professor, Friedrich Lips. In 1992 he immigrated to the United States.

Excerpts from his website: Stas is an Accordionist, a Musician, an Arranger, an Entertainer and a Teacher. 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 the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra's Arts in Community Education Program (ACE); has performed with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra; has done television commercials and performed in theater productions; produced 15 acclaimed albums including a transcription of Tchaikovsky's Nutcracker Suite for Bayan as well as one of original compositions.

The brilliant artistry and musical virtuosity of Stas afford an expanded dimension in music and an innovative musical adventure to the audience. Beyond his artistry he is a consummate entertainer capable of engaging any audience.

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

New England Digital Accordion Orchestra Performing July Summer Concerts

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
New England Digital Accordion Orchestra
The New England Digital Accordion Orchestra will be performing in Massachusetts in July. Performance dates include:

Friday - July 19, 2024 Sunday Brookfield Summer Concert Series; Time: 6:00 PM -8:00 PM; Location: Brookfield Town Common Gazebo; No Rain Date

Wednesday - July 31, 2024 Sunday Hitchcock Summer Concert Series Time: 6:00 PM -8:00 PM; Location: Brimfield Town Common Gazebo; Rain date: August 1st

The New England Digital Accordion Orchestra (NEDAO) is the nation’s first ever digital accordion orchestra and is a leading force in the evolution of the accordion. Roland digital accordions, which first appeared in 2004, are a far cry from the old family squeezeboxes. The orchestra performs popular songs from a wide array of genres. The NEDAO was formed in 2015 and is conducted by internationally recognized accordionist and music educator Anselmo (Sam) Falcetti, of Wilbraham, MA and South Pond, Brookfield. The NEDAO is available for performances at summer concerts series, fairs, holiday celebrations, and special events. To arrange a performance, or for further information, please contact Sam Falcetti at 413-204-5522 or at samfalcetti@gmail.com.

Special Guest Performers: Angela Falcetti is from Ludlow. MA and is a 2023 graduate of Ludlow High School. Angela’s passion is music and she plays the accordion, piano, ukulele, guitar and voice! She has won many awards including the 2020 ATAM Voice Championship. Currently she is a Sophomore at the University of New Hampshire with a double major in Music Theatre and Justice Studies, and a minor in Forensics.

Leslie Alexandra (McMahon) began her music career as a Hammond B3 organist in several Connecticut club/wedding bands. She later added background vocals, then evolved into a lead vocalist. Besides private tutors, she also studied at the Hartford Conservatory and UCONN. Her vocal/instrumental history includes genres as diverse as rock, country, pop, swing, and jazz, but since 1999, she has focused mainly on jazz. In 2003 her sextet recorded their jazz CD titled Jazz du Jour. Since then her various jazz groups have had multi-year residencies in several Mass & Conn jazz clubs, including 2 appearances at the Southwick Jazz Festival.

Ella Niemiec is a 10-year-old pianist and violinist. Ella Niemiec began Suzuki violin studies with Margaret Blair in Westfield, MA, at the age of 3. She joined the Springfield Youth Sinfonia, in 2022, under the baton of Matthew Bertuzzi. Ella has also been playing piano since the age of 4 and studies with Abby Thomsen in Longmeadow, MA. She is also a member of the Tuesday Morning Music Club Junior Extension. In addition to her love of music, Ella sings in the church choir, plays Westfield Little League Softball, and loves to read and spend time with her family and friends.

Franklin Nichols lives in Chicopee, Ma. with his family and has been a student of Michael Falcetti for the last 7 years. Franklin discovered his passion for music when he was just 3 years old, learning on Piano and since then his countless hours of practice and natural talent have made him a master of the keys.A music enthusiast, he also plays the flute, saxophone, and harmonica. Franklin, who has autism and is blind, learns by ear and can fill every musical part of an arrangement with ease, often becoming engrossed in melodies and harmonies, while contemplating the theory behind it all.

Benjamin Niemiec is a 14-year-old pianist, cellist, and violinist. Ben began Suzuki cello and violin studies with Margaret Blair in Westfield, MA, at the age of 8. Ben joined the Springfield Youth Sinfonia in 2022 under the baton of Matthew Bertuzzi and then moved up to the Springfield Youth Orchestra in 2023 under the baton of Jonathan Lam. Since the age of 5, Ben has been playing piano and currently studies with Abby Thomsen in Longmeadow, MA. Ben is also a member of the Pope Francis Music Program and the Tuesday Morning Music Club Junior Extension. Ben also sings in his church choir, plays High School and Westfield Babe Ruth Baseball, and loves to spend time with his family and friends.

For further information: samfalcetti@gmail.com

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

86th AAA Festival to Feature Joe Natoli

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Joseph NatoliJoseph Natoli will be a featured performer and workshop presenter at the 2024 86th AAA Festival in West Conshohocken July 12 - 14, 2024. AAA President Frank Busso Jr. shares, “No stranger to the AAA, Joe Natoli has been a performer, composer, arranger, and advocate of the accordion since age 7.”

He won the 1972 AAA Virtuoso championship under the tutelage of Mickey Bisilia of Youngstown, Ohio, and earning first runner-up honors several months later in the Coupe Mondiale in Caracas, Venezuela. In 2008, Joe won the grand prize for the first Roland US V-Accordion competition held in Los Angeles, California.

Joseph Natoli, makes his home in Northeast Ohio with his wife JoAnn and has been a performer and advocate of the accordion since the age of seven. Joe started his studies with prominent Ohio accordion teacher, the late Mickey Bisilia of Youngstown, Ohio. Joe later attended and achieved Bachelor and Master of Music degrees from the University of Toronto Faculty of Music where he also studied free bass accordion as his applied major instrument with renowned Canadian virtuoso, Joseph Macerollo.

Joe is the co-founder and director of GR8 Ideas, an organization dedicated to the dissemination of knowledge of digital accordions and digital peripherals via its web page as well as its accompanying GR8 Ideas Facebook page. Joe also founded his publishing company JANPress Music.

Joe has released 6 CDs, including “Omaggio”, “Waltz For Ron”, “Merry Christmas”, and “Chameleon” Vols 1 & 2, and 3. The “Chameleon” series CDs are 70-75 minutes each of completely original compositions in every imaginable genre including Classical, light Classical, Latin jazz, jazz ballads, contemporary, orchestral, cinematic, tango, and more (including his latest compositions including accordion orchestra pieces like “Accordion Fanfare”, “Smooth”, “A New Beginning” and “Nine Children’s Pieces”, plus solo pieces like “Nostalgic Suite”, “Homage & Offspring to the Bumblebee”, “Fantasy On a Well-Known Melody”, “Fragments”, & “We’ll Dance Again”, along with many others). There is now a Chameleon 4 CD, which Joe Natoli will also have for sale at the AAA Festival along with the other musical products and information that is mentioned in this news.”

Joe writes for both acoustic and digital accordions, but he uses his orchestration knowledge to exploit all the best coloristic possibilities on digital accordion.

For further information about Joseph Natoli music activities and products, send any requests to josephnatoli@ymail.com

Titano Accordion Company

Dr. William Schimmel 30th Anniversary 2024 Accordion Seminars

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Dr William SchimmelDr. William Schimmel will present the 30th Anniversary 2024 Accordion Seminars, virtually, sponsored by the Accordion Global Association:

July 26, 27, 28, 2024
Master classes are from 3 to 4:PM
Concerts from 4 to 5:PM

Topics will include: The Art of Audience Participation/The Sing - a - Long; Embracing the Maximallst Dimension (The Art of Clutter); Faking/Improvising - are they the same?; Working In the Video Dimension; The Varieties of The Mexican Hat Dance and The Hokey Pokey; Classical or Classic; Cassettes are back - giving “Ye Olde Accordion Sound” a return; The Artificial Intelligence of the Accordion before Artificial Intelligence; the Pot of Gold at the end of The Rainbow; Practicing by Real Time Continuity; The Five Minute Ear Training Course; Klezmer from a Non - Jewish perspective and more.

The team will include Micki Goodman, Paul Stein, Will Holshouser, Dr. Denise Koncelik, Dr. Robert Young McMahan, Corn Mo, The Main Squeeze Orchestra, Bachtopus, Carl Riehl, Mary Spencer Knapp, Godfrey Nelson, Lorraine Nelson Wolf, Melissa Elledge, Doug Makofka, Rita Davidson Barnea, Erica Marie Mancini, Benjamin Ickes, Dan Cooper, Dr. Thomas Massucci, Gene Pritsker, Peter Flint, Mayumi Miyaoka, Robert Duncan, Jeanne Velonis, Bob Goldberg, David Stoler, David First, William Komaiko, Sari Kalin, Jack Di Bennidetto, John Foti, Dr. Hugo Goldenzweig,Brian Dewan, Lee Mc Clure, Peter Jarvis, Elliott Sharp, Hanzhi Wang, Milica Paranosic and others to follow.

For further information: accordionbill@gmail.com

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

The Accordion Seminars - Dr. William Schimmel

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Rita Barnea shares, “Dr. William Schimmel has a varied and amazing career in the musical world as an accordionist. He has performed with the New York Philharmonic Orchestra with Conductor Leonard Bernstein, many Broadway shows and more. He is very modest about his many prestigious accomplishments. I asked him to share what inspired him to create “The Accordion Seminars” now celebrating their 30th Anniversary.”

Bill Schimmel shares, “A Juilliard Classmate telephoned me in 1994 to attend a piano concert that he was giving at The Tenri Cultural Institute, a Japanese art gallery in the Guggenheim SoHo Building. Micki and I attended the concert and he suggested that I bring my accordion down and test the room for the possibility of an accordion recital. The recital took place and The Tenri people suggested that Master Classes would be a great environment in the Gallery. At the same time, the AAA asked me to do a series of concerts in New York to stimulate the interest in the instruments’. Especially at a time when the renewed interest was sparking.

Years ago, Charles Magnante gave a series of workshops, in New York as well as neighboring cities. Towards the end of his life, he approached me and suggested that I continue the succession in my way, of course. The AAA approved and I was on my way.

Th first thing that I did was to find a team of accordionists and other instrumentalists who were interested.

What was the Philosophy - and how does it apply to now and the future?

1. It was designed for the exploration of an accordion culture.

2. We looked for ideas, new ones and new takes on old ones.

3. Even though the team gave the presentations, anyone interested could attend.

4. They were smart but not intellectual. The presentations were clear.

5. We stayed away from endorsing accordion brands, bass systems, etc.

6. As a curator, I presented ideas that I agreed with and ideas that I didn’t agree with.
I felt that every one should hear all angles and make their own decisions.

7. We were interested in making art in any capacity and constantly improving it.

8. Many of the spectators became participants.

9. They’re fun, in a serious manner.

10. We’re not looking for last year’s contest winner, although we have nothing against them.
We’re looking for ideas, at any level, a willing to take chances, willing to succeed, willing to fail and try again - in a safe environment. No idea is looked down upon.

We are now the Accordion Global Association AGA, an umbrella organization that takes invites all associations and points of view. We are now virtual.

What do I think the future is - for the Seminars - and the Accordion,

At the seminars, we have people who have gone out into the “big time” world”. We’ll interested in that, of course we are. We have all types - but The Accordion remains the star.

The future of the Accordion is in everyone’s hands. I often refer to a quote from a paper I delivered in 1981 at The University of Kansas City entitled: Learning from Lawrence Welk. “Let each and everyone do his or her own work with the notion that it is important.” I still hold to it.”

For further information: Accordionbill@gmail.com

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

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


4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

NYC PS 203Q Presents Accordion Concert with Cory Pesaturo

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Cory Pesaturo with young accordionists
Video: PS203Q Accordion Band with Cory Pesaturo

Cory Pesaturo visited with the accordion club of NYC Public School, PS 203Q on June 25, 2024. Music teacher Linda Holcomb shares, “What an inspiring visit is was! Cory met with my nine and ten year old accordionists, sharing stories of his world travels, competitions, world records and tips for how to be a better accordionist.

Cory then put on an amazing concert for 400 third, fourth and fifth grade students, convincing all of them that the accordion is a cool instrument!”

The school’s accordion club, “The Squeeze Box 17” then joined him on stage and ended the show by playing three songs together: “In the Mood”, “He’s a Pirate” (from “Pirates of the Caribbean”), and Van Halen’s “Jump”.

It was a magical day!

“That was a day our students will never forget!” remarked Linda Holcomb. “To have one of the best accordion players in the world spend time with our students, sharing best practices and an unbelievable concert was truly a gift. We are forever grateful and are huge fans of Cory Pesaturo!” And thanks to Cory, the “Squeeze Box 9” is doing its part to make the accordion cool again, one song at a time!

Assisting the group weekly for the past two years is volunteer “Papa Joe” DeClemente, who is a local professional Accordionist/Entertainer from Bellerose, NY. Papa Joe volunteers his time to join the students for rehearsals and he inspires them to be better accordionists. Among the many things he does for them, he also fixes their accordions! (Sometimes nine and ten year olds don’t exactly treat their accordion like it deserves to be treated!)

Excerpts from LIAA publication: Public-school 203Q, in Bayside, Queens may be one of the only elementary schools in the five boroughs of New York City that has a student accordion band. It is made up of ten 4th and 5th graders and is conducted by the school’s music teacher, Mrs. Linda Holcomb.

The school started their accordion band over fifteen years ago. They meet once a week, at the beginning of the school day to practice various songs that they will perform throughout the year. “We enjoy performing for concerts and events in our school, and we love taking our show on the road, into our community,” says Holcomb. During December, the group braved the frigid weather and played holiday songs outdoors for the Bayside Hills community holiday lighting celebration. They also entertained at the Clearview Senior Center located in that same area.

Holcomb adds, “Performing for nursing homes and Senior Centers brings such joy to the people there. They love to see the children play their accordions. Our students always come home from those trips so excited, having experienced how their music can really be a blessing to others.”

I attended their concert a few years. The enthusiasm for the accordion was apparent and more students have signed up thanks to Cory Pesaturo, Joe DeClemente and Linda Holcomb. Future publications will announce their upcoming concerts. I recommend attending to witness young people enjoying the accordion!

For further information: lindaholcomb203@gmail.com

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Latest Expansion of AAA Commissioned Composers Series of Articles - USA

by Dr. Robert Young McMahan Chair, AAA Composers Commissioning Committee
AAA Header
Dr Robert Young McMahanWallingford Riegger’s Cooper Square,
Virgil Thomson’s Lamentations, and
Paul Creston’s Second of Four AAA Commissions, Concerto for Accordion and Orchestra

This is one of longest and most historical and analytical ventures of this series, owing to the great accomplishment of Elsie Bennett to have persuaded three of America’s most famous and celebrated composers of the early and mid-twentieth century to contribute to the accordion’s growing classical repertoire. The three works are as diverse and unique as were their disparate styles of composition.

Creston was in his usual virtuosic, syncopated, modal, jazzy, and somewhat Debussyian element in his creation of perhaps the most frequently performed and highly virtuosic concerto for accordion and orchestra.

Riegger, one of America’s earliest exponents of atonal composition, and pegged as one of the “American Five” of ultra-modern music stemming from the 1920s (the other four controversial luminaries of the group being Charles Ives, Carl Ruggles, John Becker, and Henry Cowell, the last fated to become a two-time contributor to the AAA Commissioned Composers repertoire decades later), chose to write a rather curious, abstract kind of tango named after New York’s Cooper Square where many musicians of note hung out during the mid-20th century.

Thomson, normally a more tonal, less dissonant composer than either of the above, opted to write a short but extremely dissonant, rather terrifying and highly virtuosic set of variations on a chilling, crashing processional that comprises the opening theme.

As is the purpose of the series, this article offers thoroughly researched historical and theoretical information on the compositions and their creators, along with interesting historical photos from Elsie Bennett’s large photo collection. https://www.ameraccord.com/aaacommissions22.php

Titano Accordion Company

Composers Concordance Presents

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
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The 40th season of Composers Concordance presented “Imitations:
Contemporary Fugues, Canons, Inventions, and Other Imitative Compositions” on June 27th, 2024 in NYC.

The following composers presented their works: Seth Boustead, Dan Cooper, Denise Koncelik, Lisa Neher, Daniel Palkowski, David Post, Gene Pritsker, Anton Rovner, and Bill Schimmel.

Performers included: CompCord Guitar Quartet: Oren Fader, Greg Baker, Adam Negrin, Jay Sorce and Dr. William Schimmel - accordion,
Markus Kaitila - piano; Daniel Palkowski - piano, Bart Platteau - flute; and Dan Cooper - percussion

Staying in rotation for 40 years in NYC is a rare feat. In the case of a new music presenting organization, it requires not only diligence and cognizance of achievements of the past but also an ethic of keeping one's ear to the ground for emerging stylistic and technological developments, as well as talented new composers on the scene.

Composers Concordance, founded in 1984 by Joseph Pehrson and Patrick Hardish, advised by Otto Luening, strives to present contemporary music in innovative ways, with an emphasis on thematic programming. Directors Gene Pritsker and Dan Cooper co-curate the programs and lead the CompCord Ensemble, Chamber Orchestra, String Orchestra, and Big Band. Associate Directors are Milica Paranosic, Peter Jarvis, Debra Kaye, and Seth Boustead.

Composers Concordance has also created a Naxos-distributed record label: Composers Concordance Records, co-directed by Gene Pritsker and Shanan Estreicher. Composers Concordance's overriding vision is to promote contemporary music, composers, and new works as a rightful and respected part of society. Good music performed and recorded well, pushing the boundaries of sound and composition.

"Composers Concordance..a veritable New York new music institution of concerts, album production and multiple ensembles under a sweeping, tenacious brand, thriving on the emulsion of contemporary classical, free improv, jazz and rock, overt humor and fearless political statements, all very much in evidence..The ensemble..was masterful throughout.”- John Pietaro, The New York City Jazz Record

Composers Concordance is busy preparing their next season. In mid July the 41st season website will be launched.
Upcoming concerts include:
Tango Prism' on Aug. 27th
at Steel Wig in NYC Aug. 30th
at the Capital City Grange, Vermont they present 'Moonlight & Maple Syrup: CompCord Ensemble in Vermont'

Composers Concordance, founded in 1984 by Joseph Pehrson and Patrick Hardish, advised by Otto Luening, strives to present contemporary music in innovative ways, with an emphasis on thematic programming. Directors Gene Pritsker and Dan Cooper co-curate the programs and lead the CompCord Ensemble, Chamber Orchestra, String Orchestra, and Big Band. Associate Directors are Milica Paranosic, Peter Jarvis, Debra Kaye, and Seth Boustead. Composers Concordance has also created a Naxos-distributed record label: Composers Concordance Records, co-directed by Gene Pritsker and Shanan Estreicher. Composers Concordance's overriding vision is to promote contemporary music, composers, and new works as a rightful and respected part of society. Good music performed and recorded well, pushing the boundaries of sound and composition.

For further information: composers@composersconcordance.ccsend.com

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Essay: The Ethical Accordion by Janice Lavoie

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
The Ethical Accordion
Janice LavoieThe following article originally appeared in the Virginia Nursing Legacy Magazine Spring 2024. Nursing Narratives is a new regular feature for UVA nursing students that provides them with space to express their thoughts, ideas, and opinions. Virginia Nursing Legacy (VNL) thanks the Jefferson Trust, which has funded this enterprise in both the VNL's print and digital editions through May 2025.This edition explores the intersection of nursing and the creative arts. Entries were submitted by DNP students from associate professor Beth Epstein's (BSN ’94, PhD ’07) graduate Nurse Ethics course.

A personal narrative on her love affair with an instrument, by DNP student Janice K. Lavoie, "The Ethical Accordion”. Janice Lavoie is an accordionist, and nurse at Sentara Northern Virginia Medical Center in Woodbridge, Va.:

I know it’s going to be a good day when I wake up to Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro” in my head.

Growing up, I played classical works on the accordion, the instrument my father suggested, because, as he said, “We want you to be popular.”

That’s how it was in my father’s WWII platoon, he told me: the guy with the accordion was always the most beloved. As a little girl, I was innocent of the nerdy social connotations that came with being an accordionist; I was simply happy to take lessons.

Over the next 11 years, my life centered around the accordion. I entered state-, regional-, and national-level solo and duet competitions. I played in all-accordion classical orchestras and Broadway-style show bands. To raise money for our travel, my bandmates and I played in front of supermarkets, laundromats, and at ethnic festivals. After winning a high school state championship, I declared music for my college major. Despite their initial enthusiasm for the instrument, my parents didn’t share my vision. “We don’t want you to struggle like we did,” they told me. “You should be a nurse.” Being an only child, I acquiesced and started nursing school, tucking my accordion away in a closet where it sat for the next 30 years.

Holding an accordion is akin to cradling a child. You feel the vibration throughout your body. The center of the instrument is at the level of the heart, making it the most ethical instrument. It’s how I practice nursing: from my heart center.

Even though physically separated from the instrument, everything about playing it followed me to nursing school, and made me a better nurse. The accordion instilled discipline, creativity, listening, sacrifice, autonomy, confidence. My childhood musical repertoire made me culturally sensitive as I cared for my patients. Being part of an orchestra taught me teamwork, and that you don’t get a trophy just for showing up. Attending physicians often tell me I have a memory like an elephant, a talent I credit to years of memorizing up to 40 pages of music for a competition.

But most importantly, the accordion taught me ethics. For a brief time in my adult life, I took piano lessons, but found the distance between the keyboard and my body made me feel detached. On the piano, I never captured the same expression and emotion that I could with my accordion, which requires the strength of your whole body to operate its bellows and play notes with both hands. Holding an accordion is akin to cradling a child. You feel the vibration throughout your body. The center of the instrument is at the level of the heart, making it the most ethical instrument. It’s how I practice nursing: from my heart center.

Over the past few years, chance made me take the accordion out of the closet. My late mother had dementia and lived near me in assisted living. During the Christmas holidays, mother unexpectedly told the activities director, “Have Janice play Christmas carols for us on her accordion. Just make sure the nuns will let her out of school for a couple of hours!” (By this point, mother thought I was 14 again). Worried I’d be rusty, I agonized about picking up my accordion again. But when I did, to my surprise, I still played well. I also found a missing piece of myself had returned. My vibrating heart was back! Although in retrospect, I realize the accordion was with me all along: through my nursing.

PANcordion

Bayou Brothers Perform at Accordion Lovers Society International

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
The Bayou Brothers will perform on July 14, 2024 at 1:PM at Covenant Living at Mount Miguel, 325 Kempton Street, Spring Valley, California.

With a sound straight out of Louisiana's dance clubs, bayou festivals and backyard crawfish boils, the Bayou Brothers will rock you right on into "Fat Tuesday" with their extensive experience and endless enthusiasm to deliver a rousing, rollicking, heart thumpin', foot stompin' musical gumbo y'all won't soon forget!!!

Excerpts from their website: Start with a blend of accordion, keyboards, guitar, bass, drums and rubboard, add three-part harmonies, mix it up with a lot of rockin' Zydeco, blues, R&B and that great Mardi Gras sound, toss in dazzling showmanship and a big old dance floor and you get the hot, spicy musical jambalaya of the Bayou Brothers

For further information:
bayoubrothersandiego@gmail.com

Cory Pesaturo Conquers June!

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Cory Pesaturo
Cory Pesaturo continues to delight audiences all over the world with his unique style and enthusiasm. Here are some the programs he performed in June 2024. You can read more details on his website or FB page:

*Played Private Events at the Indy 500.
*Performed at the San Francisco Festa Italiana immediately after coming back from Italy.
*Performed with the Boston Symphony Orchestra.
*Performed for David Foster.
*Performed at the Ayn Rand OCON Event in Los Angeles

*Performed for 10,000 at an MIT Israel event, since he has gained great recognition due to his famous Video which went viral for performing the American and Israeli National Anthems in front of Harvard Anti-Israel Protestors. The video has over 1 million views.
*Performed concerts at the Mt. Wilson Observatory Classical Music Concert Series in Los Angeles.

He also has his own Wikipedia page.

Today Cory performs genres ranging from Italian music festivals across the United States, playing mainstream music with DJ's, folk genres from French to Bulgarian and Jewish music, Classical music performances with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and Jazz which is he most known for.

His music has been played for various Formula 1 races on SPEED TV and now NBC Sports starting in 2007, on the Velocity program "Chasing Classic Cars" and also at various Concours around the United States such as the Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance.

Pesaturo has also combined his interest in statistics and sports with his collaborations on 98.5 The Sports Hub, and his appearance on the "100 Year Anniversary of Fenway Park" album in 2012, with current and past Boston Red Sox players, and journalists.

Cory's interest in weather prompted him to write the 2005 Atlantic Hurricane Season records list, later seasons of note, and other meteorological topics. Pesaturo was a featured contestant on CBS's Let's Make a Deal in 2021, performer on NBC's “That's My Jam” with Jimmy Fallon in 2022, and was chosen to be the featured accordionist on "Weird Al" Yankovic's biographical movie Weird: The Al Yankovic Story. Additionally, he has given 4 TEDx Talks, and a host of other talks at known conferences, including 2 Talks at Google.

For further information: cory.pesaturo@gmail.com

The International Trio, CD Available online, secure server

Italian American Variety Show

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
The Sons & Daughters of Italy, Sgt. John Basilone Lodge #2442 presents an Italian American Variety Show on Sunday, July 21, 2024 from 2-6:PM at the Seville VFW Hall, 400 Lakeland Ave, Seville, NY.

$65 includes a hot buffet, coffee, tea, desserts, cash bar. There will be a 50/50 raffle.

Please make checks payable to Sgt. John Basilone Lodge #2442. POBox 173, Blue Point, NY 11715.

Entertainers will include accordionist Dominic Karcic, Comedian Stevie GB, John Ciotti, Singer Vanessa Racci.

For reservations:
Call Luisa 631-589-6634 or Dottie 631-289- 7470 no later than Julyt 17.

The show starts promptly at 2:PM. Doors open at 1:PM

For further information: dkarcic10@gmail.com

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Western Swing Jamboree, Brauntex Theatre - Texas

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Western Swing Jamboree Poster
The Western Swing Jamboree will be held at the Brauntex Theatre in New Braunfels, Texas, USA on July 27th, 2024 from 7.30pm, presented by Innovative Accordion Music Productions.

The event will feature a “night of Music, Comedy, and Family Fun for all!”

Performers include award winning accordionist, yodeler, and singer Lori Beth Brooke, who will entertain with “The Derrieres” (brothers Roger and Leo Eilts) Cowboy band.

Their program will include Western Swing and Western standards.

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

Future events


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

Cotati Festival August 17 & 18

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Click poster to see full size
To all the accordion lovers the world over, it's time to mark your calendars for the 33rd annual multicultural, multi-generational, nonprofit 2024 Cotati Accordion Festival taking place August 17 & 18. Plus, there will be a special show at the Church of the Oaks on Friday, the 16th to kick off the annual celebration of the accordion.

The Cotati Accordion Festival is a non-profit organization established in 1991 to promote the love of the accordion and to help fund music programs in the local schools. To date, they have contributed in over $500,000 to the youth of their community.
This year’s headliners include Cory Pesaturo, Stas Venglevski, Jelena Milojevic, Sergei and Maria Teleshev, Pete Contino, Netta Skog from Finland, and 28 other accordion acts on five stages.

The five different stages of music will include western, jazz, Argentinian, zydeco, classical, Tex Mex, polka, Cumbia, rock, Parisian, Gypsy and a special appearance by the United States Air Force Band led by the accordionist, William Comer. The festival also includes over 80 vendors, food, beer, wine, a Jam Tent, raffles and big tent dancing.

Performing at the 2024 festival listed in alphabetical order:
5 Cent Coffee, Alejandro Brittes Trio, Andrew Cohen, Art Peterson Trio, Balkan Laikus, California Blue Runners
Califas, Cila Puccadella, Cory Pesaturo, Future Stars, Iko Ya Ya, Innuendo, Jelena Milojevic, Junk Parlor,
Les Amis Zydeco, The Mad Maggies, Discos Resaca Collective, Mark St. Mary, Michael Zampiceni, Nathan & Jessie, Netta Skog, Pete Contino, Ron Borelli, Sergei & Maria Teleshev, Sheri Mignano, Sonomussette, Sourdough Slim, Stas Venglevski, Steve Balich Band, Two Tribes, USAF Band, Wind Weavers, ZLA VILA

For further information: info@cotatifest.com

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

Scythian 2025 String Break Cruise – North America

by Christine Johnstone
Scythian 2025 String Break Cruise
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Popular group “Scythian” have organised a “String Break Cruise” to celebrate their 20th anniversary. The event will take place from February 2nd to 9th, 2025 on the “Sky Princess”.

Cruise stops include Princess Cays Bahamas, San Juan Puerto Rico, Amber Cover Dominican Republic, and Grand Turks and Caicos Islands.

The cruise will feature concerts by Scythian and a number of other groups.

Scythian’s accordionist is Dan Fedoryka. Dan and his brother, Alex, are the founding members of the band.

For further cruise details email: scythianmail@gmail.com

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

Yakima Corrido Festival - USA

by Christine Johnstone
Accordion Eulogies” at Yakima Corrido Festival
The 1st Yakima Corrido Festival will be held at the Central Washington Agricultural Museum in Union Gap, Yakima, Washington, USA on June 29th, 2024, from 10.30am, hosted by Fredy Farias-Sanchez and Spirit Runner (Noe Alvarez).

The festival will feature live music, workshops, and the “Accordion Eulogies” book signing. The book is a Memoir of Music, Migration and Mexico by Noe Alvarez, who will teach a writing workshop in the morning and give a book talk in the afternoon.
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