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U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Oct-2022
Previous News | Past News Index


Titano Accordion Company

Highlights

Editor's Note
Updated Expanded Article, AAA Commissioned Concert Work
Stas Venglevski: Four Concerts in Four Days with One World Premiere
What happens when an IDEA becomes a GR8 IDEA??
Cody McSherry, Multi-talented Artist, Performs with the Tamburitzans
Tom Torriglia Releases New CD “Limoncello Time”
Michael Bridge To Open the 125th Toronto Women's Musical Club Season
Ensemble of Hope to Perform on October 16

Voci Armoniche

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

Cotati Review: A Storm of Accordions Hit the Cotati Plaza
A Trip to A World of Accordions Museum Needs to be at the Top of Everyone’s Bucket List!
“Requiem”: Mozart - a Reality written and performed on Accordion by Dr. William Schimmel
Accordionist Steve Albini Performs in October
“Eloise & Co” Performed in Mass. Lawn Concert
Lemon Bucket Orkestra Performed at Lotus World Music & Arts Festivals

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

Future events

2023 Houston Accordion Orchestra Retreat
Weird: The Al Yankovic Story - Official Teaser Trailer (2022) Daniel Radcliffe


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
Editor Rita BarneaWelcome to the October USA News! Each month there are so many fascinating events to report! Now we are having more and more live events for you to enjoy.

It is very encouraging to see so many young people learning and enjoying the accordion. Remember that it is never too late to begin to study the accordion at any age!

Please remember that the USA News is here for you! If you as an individual or your accordion club, band, group is planning an event, please send the information and photos/videos to me at Ritabelll@aol.com. If you have questions, please call/text me at 201-675-4861.

It really isn’t a big secret, just send the info to me. We want to know what YOU are doing out there in the accordion world! So, enjoy the October edition of the USA News and best wishes for continued successes in all your accordion endeavors!

Accordion Repairs Made Easy by John Reuther

Updated Expanded Article, AAA Commissioned Concert Work

by Dr. Robert Young McMahan Chair, AAA Composers Commissioning Committee;
AAA Logo
It gives me great pleasure to announce that I have completed the expansion of yet another of my 22 original articles on the AAA commissioned concert works each of which appeared annually in the AAA Festival Journal between 1997 and 2019.

This article examines the Adagio and Rondo Concertante, for two accordions & orchestra, by Paul Pisk, and Sonatina, for solo accordion, by David Diamond. http://www.ameraccord.com/aaacommissions8.php

As with my previous revisions, this one adds more historical and analytical information than was in the original article plus the new and much needed feature of musical examples. Regarding the latter, a new element in this latest revision is the presence of sound files to accompany the musical excerpts of the Pisk work, thus allowing the reader to hear the excerpts while viewing them in print. Regarding the Diamond Sonata, you may hear it beautifully performed by Beverly Roberts Curnow in its entirety via the link in the AAA website commissioned works home page (http://www.ameraccord.com/aaacommissions.php)

As always, go to http://www.ameraccord.com/aaacommissions2.php to view this and all the other articles of the series in both their original and newly revised versions.

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

Stas Venglevski: Four Concerts in Four Days with One World Premiere

by Dan Grauman
Stas VenglevskiStas VenglevskiDuring the four-day period from September 22nd to 25, 2022, Stas Venglevski performed four concerts for diverse audiences – a senior community, my friends and family, a mostly Eastern European audience, and the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society (WMAS). The concerts, which included a mix of classical, folk, tango, and American music were well received by enthusiastic and appreciative audiences.

One of the pieces that Stas Venglevski performed as part of the classical music set was a World Premiere. This article focuses on that 202-year-old piece of music and the Swiss church with which it is associated. Many thanks to Cornelia Schmid, Director of AKKORDeMOTION, who made it possible for Stas to get the music, and, as a freelance journalist for the newspaper WillisauerBote, provided us with the following text about this work. Additional thanks go to the Willisauer (Lucerne) Tourist Bureau, whose information about the church will also be quoted.

On a recent performing tour in Switzerland, Mrs. Schmid asked Stas to look at some organ music that was written by Anton Joseph Frey in 1820, and to pick one piece and transpose it for accordion and play it during the Fall concert series of AKKORDeMOTION in Switzerland (organ music picture above right).

“Anton Joseph Frey lived in Ettiswil in the early 19th century. He was organist in the church "Maria Himmelfahrt und Stefan". He created a collection of small, pretty organ pieces for church services and compiled them in an 84-page manual in 1820. A second book is by Isidor Frey, probably the son of Anton Josef, it has the date 1836. The music in Anton Josef Frey's book was written in the style of the late Viennese classical period, combined with popular melodies of the time.

Both handwritten books with the collections of the organ pieces lay unnoticed and in a slightly rotten state amidst disused choir and organ sheet music. In 1972, in connection with the upcoming construction of a new organ, the dusty, disheveled organ books were found. For the time being, these were stored in the rectory. In 1981 the then organist, Rudolf Zemp, took the two organ books with him to his new job in Stans and was allowed to test them in practice. He gave the dilapidated books to a bookbinder, who rebound them. In October 2021 the books were brought back to Ettiswil and solemnly handed over to the parish of Ettiswil by Rudolf Zemp, who played some songs on the church organ. Now the books are stored for the time being in the parish hall in Ettiswil.

At the AKKORDeMOTION concert in October 2022, 202 years after the first book was written, three formations will each play a work from Anton Josef Frey's collection. The band Gupfbuebä, the duo FINKpositiv and Stas Venglevski, have each made an arrangement on one of the songs and will present it on 2nd October 2022 (see poster below) in the Catholic Church, that is, in the home of the notebook of 1820. Stas Venglevski has already performed one of the works in July 2022 on the occasion of the 80th anniversary of ATG (Accordionist and Teachers Guild) in Isle, Greater Chicago area, USA. So, the music from Ettiswil finds its way to America 200 years after its creation.”

As it turns out, the work was not performed at the ATG Festival, thus, the audiences who came to the four performances in Maryland and Virginia had the good fortune to hear the World Premiere of Stas Venglevski’s transcription of “Rondo & Allegro” by Anton Joseph Frey.

The history of the church is also very interesting, and the fact that Stas will be performing “Rondo & Allegro” at that particular Swiss church in Ettiswil on October 2nd will make that performance very special and emotional. This concert will be the 66th for Stas in the series of AKKORDeMOTION concerts over the years!

“The parish church (Maria Himmelfahrt und Stefan) of the Assumption of Mary and St. Stephen of Ettiswil (picture top).

History – On August 24th, 1773, the papal nuncio consecrated the present parish church. However, the history of the parish church, which was built in the Baroque style, goes back much further. The first structure was built in 1350, it was a part of the tower. This fell victim to a village fire in 15 71. The new complex with the choir was built around 16 50. In 1768 the Lucerne authorities gave permission to build a new church. The construction of the present church, which was built according to the plans of Jakob Singer, dates back to the years 1769 - 1771.

Renovations – Various renovations have shaped the image of the parish church. In 1873 the first renovation took place, unfortunately with great artistic loss due to overpainting. During the renovation in 1956 the overpainted paintings were uncovered again. In 2017, after more than 35 years, the parish church was thoroughly restored on the outside and shines from autumn 2017 in a new dress. In spring 2018, after more than 30 years, the figures of the three saints, St. Anthony, St. Francis Xavier and St. Charles Borromeo, found their place again in the niches in the façade.”

I wish that I could be present at the October 2, 2022 concert in Ettiswil, Switzerland. If the reaction to “Rondo & Allegro” by the four local audiences who heard it performed for the first time in 202 years by Stas is any indication, I cannot even imagine the reaction of the audience on October 2 at the very church where this music originated.
Stas Venglevski

Titano Accordion Company

What happens when an IDEA becomes a GR8 IDEA??

by Joseph Natoli
Joseph NatoliiVideo: Symposium 5.0 Video Ad (updated)

The organization called IDEAS (International Digital Electronic Accordion Society) has been successful for the last four years with Symposiums 1.0 – 4.0 and is about to embark on a major paradigm shift and name change for Symposium 5.0.

What is that paradigm shift? IDEAS will now be dropping its acronym translation and change its name, logo, and brand to GR8 IDEAS because they will be extending an invitation to embrace all accordionists (both acoustic and digital) in this Symposium formula which has worked so well for all who have attended since 2018.

The GR8 IDEAS Symposium 5.0 will now also become a Hybrid Symposium where the Virtual portion will be held for 7 straight days, Feb 6-12, 2023 completely online via Zoom; and the Live portion will be held at The Grand Resort country club (Warren OH 44484) April 26-30, 2023.

All Symposium attendees voted to retain the virtual portion because the quality of online workshops and level of detail is much greater and more effective than what typically can be accomplished in live sessions. That is because virtual has the distinct advantage of recording and archiving every workshop, concert, and event (about 100 hours’ worth each for Symposiums 3.0 and 4.0) so that all the archived videos can be referenced for continued learning well into the future for all Symposium registrants.

As the attached video ad says however, the Live event is also highly desirable for the participants because of the multiple live concerts, jam sessions, master classes, networking, and camaraderie, not to mention the wonderful facilities of the 5-star country club of The Grand Resort which hosts the event.

Please refer to the attached video ad that explains the new GR8 IDEAS, what its goals are for Symposium 5.0, and a detailed look at this new paradigm shift:

There is an additional big announcement of a scholarship offer this year for any young person, 21 and under, to submit two video performances and a few paragraphs on why this scholarship would assist and be meaningful to them musically and/or for their musical career. This is a GR8 opportunity for any young person who wants to experience the widest possible dimensions of the accordion.

Of course, just like all the previous Symposiums, we have some of the best in the world as performing artists and on faculty. This is all being finalized, and will be announced further as final preparations are made. At this point in time however, we can confirm that we have with us Michael Bridge, Matthias Matzke, Uwe Steger, Cory Pesaturo, Eddie Monteiro, Joe Natoli, Júlia Masnicová, and Maria Teleshev.

There will be no less than Four concerts for the live portion of this Symposium, one of which will be a mixed ensemble concert of digital and acoustic accordions together playing some brand new compositions and arrangements never performed before.

Anyone reading this article is encouraged to go to the GR8 IDEAS website for both registration information and also for pictorial and video highlights of previous Symposiums for anyone who has not had the opportunity to attend previously. We hope to have you join us for one of the premiere accordion events in the world – GR8 IDEAS Symposium 5.0!

Voci Armoniche

Cody McSherry, Multi-talented Artist, Performs with the Tamburitzans

by Dan Grauman
Cody
CodyI met Cody McSherry at an accordion festival when he was about eight years old. He sounded quite good on the piano accordion for his young age and definitely enjoyed performing as much as the audience enjoyed watching him perform. Cody subsequently learned to play the diatonic button box (Steirische Harmonika) and formed his own polka band by the age of eleven.

He picked up additional instruments along the way including the piano, organ, harp, hammered dulcimer, saxophone, and guitar, just to name a few. In June of 2017, while trying out piano accordions in Seattle for the purpose of renting one for the Leavenworth International Accordion Celebration, he spotted a C system chromatic button accordion on a shelf.

Though he had never touched one before, he asked to try it, and within about 30 minutes, he was playing a Balkan piece of music with its odd rhythms almost flawlessly . . . with basses!

Cody, who had fallen in love with Balkan music earlier decided that he also wanted to dance to Balkan music, not just play it. He joined Kolo Club Marian, a Croatian folk dance group in Steelton, Pennsylvania, and was soon dancing to the music and playing the accordion to accompany the dancing.

While excelling in school, playing the various instruments, performing for Kolo Club Marian, and doing paying gigs individually and with his polka band, Cody somehow also found time to take voice lessons. He took top honors in his region in the National Association of Teachers of Singing several years in a row.

When he was quite young Cody had seen the Tamburitzans perform their energetic show of Eastern and Western European folk music and dance. The Tamburitzans, formerly the Duquesne University Tamburitzans, is an ensemble that has performed a wide variety of folk dance and music representing international cultures for over 80 years in the United States and internationally.

After the whirling folk costumes left the stage, Cody announced that in the future he wanted to join the Tamburitzans. When he was a high school senior, it was time to audition for the Tamburitzans, but because of the Covid pandemic, live auditions were not possible. The Tamburitzans had to switch to auditions by video.  The requirement was to submit a one-take, CONTINUOUS, 15-minute video, not a set of videos that added up to 15 minutes.  Cody submitted his video in which he sang, danced, and played three different accordions – his Titano piano accordion, Titano C-system accordion and Strasser Steirische Harmonika.

The Tamburitzans were only accepting three new members to the troupe in 2020, and Cody was one of them.  I don’t know how many people auditioned, but I do know that he was candidate number 111!  

Cody is now a sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh with a double major in Classical Studies with an emphasis in Ancient Greek and French, and an additional certificate in Russian and in Slavic Studies, in addition to traveling the country with the Tamburitzans. Check out the Tamburitzans’ schedule at https://www.thetamburitzans.org/events/tickets. They will be performing in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Kansas, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Florida, and New Jersey over the next seven months with other locations being added periodically.

Take the opportunity to see the Tamburitzans . . . and Cody McSherry!

Accordion Jazz Chords

Tom Torriglia Releases New CD “Limoncello Time”

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
LimoncelloLimoncelloVideo: Track from new CD “Limoncello Time”

Tom Torriglia has released his latest album “Limoncello Time”. The CD was recorded in both Genova and San Francisco, and includes 10 fun and whimsical songs spanning a variety of musical genres and themes.Since 2005, Tom has been recording Italian-American music and “Limoncello Time”, the fourth album in this series, does not disappoint with seven of the 10 tunes falling into that category.

Tom shares, “What time is it? Why, of course, It's limoncello time!! “Limoncello Time” is the name of my new album that coincidentally contains the whimsical and reggae-flavored The Limoncello Song, co-written by myself and Those Darn Accordions' maestro of musical mischief, Paul Rogers. After countless hours of brainstorming with the album's bassist and marketing director, Mary Keydash, we felt this name captured the spirit of the entire album - and with other fun songs including “Gelato Joe”, “I’m Zeneize”, and “The Pinocchio Song”, it's easy to see why. Principal recording was done in Genova and more recording and mixing in San Francisco. Look for a June release to all the usual streaming platforms.”

Tom Torriglia is a multi-Grammy-nominated songwriter, musical entertainer and president of both Festa Records and Pierce-Beach Publishing. Excerpts from his website: Tom has been delighting audiences with his music since 1969. Tom primarily plays the accordion, but can also play piano, keyboards, bass and guitar. Tom performs with an Italian-American band (Bella Ciao), and has performed with an oldies band (Gold Lame'), a wedding band (Stardust), a 10-piece accordion band (Those Darn Accordions) and a traditional polka band (The Squeegees). Tom composes Italian-American music - a musical genre that he has been trying to re-invigorate over the past 20 years.

Tom has recorded four  albums ("Legends of the Italian Lounge", "Festivus Italiano", "La Lanterna" and "Antipasto Rock") that contain many new classic Italian-American songs. Tom's "The Pasta Song" was re-recorded and used for three straight years in a Carrabba's Restaurant national TV commercial. Another one of his many food-related songs, "The Cannoli Song", can be heard at the website of the Brooklyn Cannoli Company. Over the years, he has also written and recorded rock, pop, polka and even Christmas songs!  

Tom came up with the idea and spearheaded the effort to make the accordion San Francisco's official musical instrument. The measure passed in 1990. Tom is the sponsor of National Accordion Awareness Month (NAAM) which is June. Tom's efforts in promoting the accordion have seen him featured in People Magazine, The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, San Francisco Chronicle and countless other newspapers both domestically and internationally; and TV stations/programs including ESPN, Good Morning America, NBC, CBS, CNN, etc.

On a non-musical note, Tom is a total grammar geek; adjunct professor of American business English; business ESL instructor; author of the Nighttime, Good-Time Guide to San Francisco (1988,1990); founder of the National Association for Good Grammar (NAGG) and chief of the grammar police in San Francisco. Tom was born in San Francisco and is of northern-Italian (Ligurian) descent. He holds dual citizenship with both the United States and Italy and currently lives in Genova.

Since 2000, Tom Torriglia has been performing with Bella Ciao, hot retro Italian and Italian-American hits including “Tu Vuo' Fa l'Americano”, “Nessuno”, “It Had Better Be Tonight”, and “Mambo Italiano” - as well as the most popular Italian-American hits of today including first-ballot Grammy-nominated songs  “Blue Italian Skies “and “ Mambiambo”; “The Pasta Song”, Monica from Monaco and more, in a fun-filled, all-ages show.

Bella Ciao has played both the Italian National Anthem and American National Anthem at a major league baseball park. In 2007, they played the American National Anthem the night Barry Bonds broke the all-time home-run record. Bella Ciao has performed numerous times at the Cotati Accordion festival, San Jose Italian festival, San Francisco Italian festival and more. Out-of-state appearances include the Reno Italian Festival, Virginia Beach (VA) Italian festival and Portland Italian festival.

For further information: tom.torriglia@yahoo.it

PANcordion

Michael Bridge To Open the 125th Toronto Women's Musical Club Season

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Michael Bridge
Michael Bridge will open the 125th Women's Musical Club Season at the Walter Hall, University of Toronto in Toronto, Ontario, Canada on October 6, 2022 at 1.30 PM.

For half of the concert, he will be joined by the Ladom Ensemble, and his mentor, Joseph Macerollo.

Their program as follows:
Suite No. 1 in G for cello, BWV 10 07 Prelude (Bach)
French Suite No. 5 in G major, BWV 816 Gigue (Bach)
Et Exspecto (Sofia Gubaidulina)
Tebi Majko Misli Lete (Traditional Bosnian)
The Walls are Made of Song (Pouya Hamidi)
Trazo (Edson Zampronha)
Tsaghkats Baleni (Kachatur Avetisyan)
Oblivion (Piazzolla)
Weird Fishes (Radiohead)
East Coast Medley (Traditional)
Libertango (Piazzola)

Michael Bridge is a virtuoso performer on both the acoustic accordion and the digital accordion. Michael’s concerts capture the energy and panache of stadium rock with the elegance and discipline of chamber music. He was named one of CBC’s 30 under 30 classical musicians. Michael Bridge is a musical maverick.

Michael recently received a doctorate in performance from the University of Toronto and became a Rebanks Fellow at the Glenn Gould School. He gives over 100 concerts a year as a soloist and as a member of both the “Bridge & Wolak” duo and “Ladom Ensemble”. He is in demand for masterclasses around the world.

Bridge embraces a musical aesthetic that is alternatively irreverent, deadly serious, meticulously prepared and completely in-the-moment. He’s at home with jazz, folk and classical music and has premiered 53 new works. Ultimately, he aims to make your world more bearable, beautiful and human – even if only for the length of a concert.

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

Ensemble of Hope to Perform on October 16

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Ensemble of Hope
Eddie MonteiroDaniel DesiderioThe Ensemble of Hope will perform for ALS on October 16, 2022 from 2-3:30 PM at the Seabrook Village Senior Home in Tinton Falls,NJ. The Ensemble of Hope is an accordion ensemble based in the New Jersey/Pennsylvania area.  The group was formed in 2019 to perform in a benefit concert for the ALS Hope Foundation, and its name was chosen to complement the group’s original purpose. The ensemble continues to support ALS Hope Foundation. Some of the members are music educators, while others have pursued non-musical careers but simply love to play!

The ensemble is honored to be playing arrangements by renowned accordionist and music educator, Daniel J Desiderio, created especially for them. The arrangements are divided into three or four parts, plus a special part for bass accordion to interweave melody, harmony and rhythm. Their repertoire includes show tunes,light classical compositions, Latin, waltzes, patriotic, holiday favorites ..and of course..a Polka!

The Ensemble of Hope includes:
Daniel J. Desiderio, Maestro
John Modrowsky..1st Accordion
Robert Patterson ..2nd Accordion
Denise Szabo..1st And 4th Accordion
Rosemarie Cavanaugh...3rd Accordion
Public Relations
Josephine Sarica Bass Accordion
John Andrews...String Bass

Guest artist: Eddie Monteiro

For further information: Musik4ro@comcast.net

Pigini USA distributor Ernest Deffner

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


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

Cotati Review: A Storm of Accordions Hit the Cotati Plaza

by Scott Goree
CotatiCotatiIn August 2022, a series of storms hit La Plaza Park in the heart of Cotati. Blowing into town came a whirlwind of joy encountering sneaker waves of people wanting to get together and enjoy live music again, all combining with an avalanche of musical talent on five stages around the park. It all made for a special day of a community coming together, while experiencing a multi-cultural experience of varied genres and styles of accordion music.

The music never stopped at the festival, as people were zydeco dancing at Spancky’s, polka dancing in the big tent, playing with friends in the Jam Tent, watching the children play at the Church of the Oaks, catching the latest Avant Garde act on the Rays Deli stage, or just taking in Cory Pesaturo and Alex Meixner playing together in a once in a lifetime performance on the big stage.

The sponsors of this year’s show came out in force  (the Community Voice being one of them) to help support the event this year, as there were a lot of Covid ramifications to overcome. There was a feeling that this is a year to really give the event an extra boost, to the point that even KPIX and KGO were calling and asking for current footage to broadcast. 

Food, beer, and wine were flowing aplenty, and one of the most telling signs of the weekend was that all the 70 plus vendors were happy.  People like Ginny Mac flew in from Texas for her last big gig before taking off after the show as the newest member of Asleep at the Wheel, and she was ecstatic at  the quality of sound that the sound crew produced. Matthias Mattzke, one of the world's most elite international accordionists, who flew in from Germany, was overwhelmed by how appreciative and enthusiastic the crowd was.

Behind the scenes, the Covid ramifications and supply line problems were rearing their ugly heads. We found that there was a shortage of CO2 and there was none for the beer truck. At the last minute the 8 Ball and The Tradewinds stepped in and supplied the cannisters. There were vendors and musical acts that were cancelling because of Covid in the home, but each time quality replacements suddenly showed up such as New Orleans Legend Johnny Sansone. Recology was hesitating and re-thinking their sponsorship of such events, and before we knew it, they were back with full sponsorship of the port-a-lets and garbage. As a result, we are proud to announce that we will be teaming up with Recology next year to make the festival totally green!

The volunteers were out in full force, as the Thomas Page Academy was manning the gates, Penngrove Elementary manning the shuttle, The Cotati/ Rohnert Park Education Foundation handling all the money, The Cotati/ Rohnert Park Nursery School Co-op as the security and the Rancho Cotate Music Department maintaining the park. What a stellar team and what a group of community-oriented people coming together to show how a community can unite around a combined common cause, our kids and music. I say kids because the proceeds of about $20,000.00 this year will be going to local nonprofit youth groups and educational organizations.

We, at the Cotati Accordion Festival, want to thank all the people who came out this weekend to enjoy our show. We know it was a bit warm. We know that parking can be rough. We know that we create some congestion downtown. We also know that the people who brave all that and come out to the festival are the most cordial, enthusiastic, music lovers one will ever find. Thank you for coming to the “Greatest Accordion Festival on Earth”....at least in our minds. 

On a final note, the Cotati Accordion Festival has not yet completed this summer's show. On September 25 we are in a partnership with the Green Center at SSU in the presentation, from Ukraine, of DakaHabrakha. I know our production team is not going to miss this incredibly original dance/act presentation all done to accordion music.

Photo: Special non-accordion playing guest of Corey Pesaturo, violinist Leah Zeger during their performance of Vivaldi’s "Winter", for which they received a standing ovation.
Photo: Cory Pesaturo, accordionist extraordinaire, looks towards his special non-accordion playing guest during their performance Sunday at the Cotati Accordion Festival.
Photos by Robert Grant

The Art of Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

A Trip to A World of Accordions Museum Needs to be at the Top of Everyone’s Bucket List!

by Joan Grauman Morse, AAA Historian
AWAM
Helmi and JoanI have been wanting to return to Superior, Wisconsin to see this incredible museum and its equally incredible founder and curator, Dr. Helmi Harrington, since my first visit in 2005. My wish finally came true in late July! My husband Bill, our little dog Metro and I took our camper to beautiful Duluth, Minnesota (on Lake Superior, just minutes from the museum in Superior, WI). The next day, bright and early, we headed for A World of Accordions Museum, housed in a large and gorgeous old church right over the bridge from Duluth into Superior.

Helmi opened the museum just for us that day and it was truly wonderful having her all to ourselves!! Dr. Helmi Harrington is a warm and delightful “walking encyclopedia of all-things accordion”. Her enthusiasm is infectious, and she loves sharing her knowledge and her collection — the largest and most complete in the world — with those of us who share her passion. My husband Bill and I definitely “fit that bill”!

Not only is the museum packed with a visual wonderland of 1300-plus accordions of all ages, sizes and systems, it also houses an accordion and concertina repair school, a teaching academy, libraries, the American Accordionists’ Association Collection, and a breathtakingly beautiful concert hall named for Helmi’s mother, the celebrated accordionist and teacher Hanni Strahl. As one walks through the halls and the floors of the museum, the visual delights fill the senses!! In between, above and below all of the well-documented instruments are figurines, paintings and other artifacts depicting the accordion. In Helmi’s words, “Decorative art and artifacts shown throughout the building emphasize the pervasive presence of the instruments’ image in society.” To truly appreciate everything in the museum, one would need weeks of daily visits!

Helmi and I have worked side-by-side in festivals and have been friends for years. I wanted very much for Bill to meet her and to experience the museum. Bill has just retired as principal conductor of the Jefferson Symphony Orchestra in Golden, Colorado. He began his musical career as an accordionist, majored in piano and percussion at Oberlin Conservatory, and received his doctorate in conducting. His passion is still the accordion, so he was very excited stepping into the museum. Bill’s reaction was “Wow!!!!!” He was overwhelmed and enjoyed every moment in the archival sections and the concert hall. He happily thanked Helmi and thought we had seen everything. I said, “Wait — we haven’t seen the ACCORDIONS yet!” Bill was shocked! There are MORE accordions? Helmi led us to the lower level of the building. We opened the doors to a Disneyland of accordion delights and historical wonders! I cannot even begin to describe the feeling of being in this magical environment! We both enjoyed every moment we spent there and still speak about it daily!

I strongly encourage everyone to schedule a trip to Superior for a tour of A World of Accordions Museum. You will love the experience! Please visit the museum’s website to learn more about Helmi, her repair school, her collections, and for concert and event schedules: www.worldofaccordions.org.
Helmi and AWAM

Titano Accordion Company

“Requiem”: Mozart - a Reality written and performed on Accordion by Dr. William Schimmel

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Dr.William SchimmelVideo: “Requiem”:Mozart - a Reality written and performed on Accordion by Dr. William Schimmel

Dr. William Schimmel, known for his numerous collaborations with his wife, Micki Goodman, has written and performed his own version (Reality) on “Mozart’s Requiem”. The “Requiem” is “Mozart’s” last work and considered to be one of the greatest pieces in western music. Many books, writings and a movie depict the circumstances on how the work came to be.

It is not a literal arrangement. Instead it contains new elements such as implied tango, balkan and other forms of ethnic music within a Classical Western format. The work is 14 and 1/2 minutes long (the original is one hour) and is played entirely as a solo. As Schimmel states, “The purpose here was to create the feeling of a chorus and orchestra on one accordion rather than regarding it as an organ”.

The videography and filming is by Micki Goodman.The filming of Dr. Schimmel’s performance is by Benjamin Niemczyk and the editing is by Godfrey Nelson.

For more information: Accordionbill@gmail.com

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

Accordionist Steve Albini Performs in October

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Steve Albini
On Saturday Oct. 1, 2022, accordionist Steve Albini performs at the Festa Italiana in St. Helena, CA. The Festa begins at noon and he will be playing throughout the day. Cory Pesaturo and Tony Mustaro will also be performing.

Join the Silicon Valley Accordion Club on Sunday, October 2, 2022, at 1:30 PM PDT. Accordionist Steve Albini and John Douglas on sax, flute and clarinet, will perform.

Location:
Christ Episcopal Church
1040 Border Road
Los Altos, CA 94024

Zoom will start at the same time as the featured performer, which will be 3:PM PDT. For ZOOM, Please be sure to RSVP ASAP to Colette.ogata@gmail.com for a zoom link. Zoom is free to members, and nonmembers are asked to make a donation. Anyone who would like to play before the featured performer, please contact Colette so that time can be budgeted.

Steve Albini is a multi-instrumentalist and singer. He has performed throughout the U.S. and Europe. As a studio musician, Steve is often called by producers and artists to add his touch to their projects. 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 also performs as part of the duo Il Sole with Tatiana Semichastnaya.  

Performing with Steve, will be John Douglas, a saxophonist, flutist, and clarinetist. John has played and taught in the San Francisco Bay Area for over three decades. John performs many styles of music, including Jazz, (Big Band and Small Ensembles), World (Brazilian, Cuban, Puerto Rican, African, Tropical), Rock, Funk, Dance, Pop, and Classical. He is also a highly sought-after studio musician and has performed with many well-known musicians over the years.

For further information: steven.albini@gmail.com

Gary Daverne CD's and eSheet music available online

“Eloise & Co” Performed in Mass. Lawn Concert

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Rachel and Becky
“Eloise & Co” presented a lawn concert in South Hadley, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, USA on September 25th, 2022. The duo, which included Rachel Bell (accordion, piano & vocals) and Becky Tracy (violin & vocals performed a varied program.

Rachel Bell is performer, tunesmith, and teacher who is sought after for concerts, contra dances, French bal folk dances, English country dances, workshops, and festivals–all in virtual form during the pandemic. Rachel dreams every day of the time when all of these activities can resume as joyous, in-person, community experiences.

She plays with Eloise & Co., Peregrine Road, Alchemy, and Old World Charm School. Her playing spans an enormous range of emotion, from nuanced and sensitive to exhilarating and powerful. Excerpts from her website: Over a decade of musical travel has landed her smack-dab in the middle of some of her most exciting projects ever.

A vibrant and versatile collaboration with Karen Axelrod, exquisite violin and viola sounds from Eric Martin, a rich and energetic contra dance band called Seaglass, and a slew of French-focused music and dance adventures with Susan Kevra are just the tip of the iceberg. A recent addition has been a joyful musical partnership with Becky Tracy, and other combinations often round out the mix.

For further information: rachel@rachelbellmusic.com

4 Music Books by Stas Venglevski

Lemon Bucket Orkestra Performed at Lotus World Music & Arts Festivals

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Lemon bucket
Lemon BucketThe Lemon Bucket Orkestra (from Canada) performed at the 29th annual Lotus World Music & Arts Festival held in downtown Bloomington, Indiana, USA from September 22nd to 25th, 2022. The festival included over 20 international artist groups, arts, food, dance, and workshops.

Free activities included Arts Village downtown, Lotus in the Park at Switchyard Park on Saturday 24th, and the Lotus Local Stage which presented local bands with a global connection.

The Lemon Bucket Orkestra is Toronto’s only Balkan-Klezmer-Gypsy-Party-Punk Super-Band and includes accordionist and vocalist Marichka Marczyk.

Amy Jo Sawyer CD titled According to Amy

Future events


Titano Accordion Company

2023 Houston Accordion Orchestra Retreat

by Megumi Hada
Houston Accordion Retreat
October Futures 25 done… 2023 Houston Accordion Orchestra Retreat - USA by Megumi Hada

The 2023 Houston Accordion Orchestra Retreat will be held from January 12th to 15th, 2023 in Houston, Texas, USA, under the baton of Stas Venglevski.

Activities include an enlarged orchestra and 13 music scholarship winners from across the USA who will play in the Youth Ensemble. Three of them will have their compositions premiered as an orchestral arrangement by Stas Venglevski.

Those students are Daniel Hartnett, (Night Life), Gabrielle Peck, (Waltz!) and Ashley Frye, (Finale).

For further information email: meghada33@gmail.com

Jeff Lisenby CD A Spy In Tortuga

Weird: The Al Yankovic Story - Official Teaser Trailer (2022) Daniel Radcliffe

by Rita Davidson Barnea, Editor USA Accordion News
Weird Al
Weird: The Al Yankovic Story is coming to The Roku Channel in fall 2022. The movie will focus on the prolific career of Weird Al, Grammy winning musician and pop cultural icon. It will be Roku’s first original biopic. Also, IZ2 Comics announced a new “Weird Al” Yankovic graphic novel coming soon!

The Office’s Rainn Wilson has also been cast as legendary bizarro radio host (and “Weird Al” mentor) Dr. Demento,

Daniel said, “Wearing the Hawaiian shirt is a huge responsibility that I don’t take lightly,” Radcliffe, told People, “and I’m honored to finally share with the world the absolutely 100 percent unassailably true story of Weird Al’s depraved and scandalous life.”

According to a press release, “The biopic holds nothing back, exploring every facet of Yankovic’s life, from his meteoric rise to fame with early hits like ‘Eat It’ and ‘Like a Surgeon’ to his torrid celebrity love affairs and famously depraved lifestyle.” Eric Appel will direct from Yankovic’s script, which he co-wrote. Appel commented, “when Weird Al first sat me down against my will and told me his life story, I didn’t believe any of it, but I knew that we had to make a movie about it.”

Yankovic shared that he is “absolutely thrilled that Daniel Radcliffe will be portraying” him in the film, joking of the British actor, “I have no doubt whatsoever that this is the role future generations will remember him for.” Roku Head of Original Scripted Programming Colin Davis joked in the press release, “There clearly aren’t enough biopic movies about famous musicians and we were excited to shine a light on the incredibly true, unexaggerated story of Weird Al.” He finished his statement on a more serious note, saying “this is sincerely the ultimate combination of talent, creativity, and friends, coming together to make something genuinely funny and we could not be prouder to call this film a Roku Original.”
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