United States National News (2024)

U.S. National Accordion News - 01-Oct-2014
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United States National News (1)

Editor's Note
Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA
Ginny Mac in Texas Concerts
Meet Canada's Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra
Elena and Gregory in October 11 Concert
Dr. Schimmel's Busy East Coast Fall Tour
Guy Klucevsek to Present Original Compositions in New York
Accordion Pops Orchestra Concert Honors Carmen Carrozza on Nov. 2
Richard Galliano New CD, October Performance at the Jazz Standard, NYC

Rob Reich in Concerts
New Accordion Blog
Long Island Accordion Alliance Features Mary Tokarski
Seattle Accordionist Jamie Maschler

United States National News (2)

Emmanuel Gasser to Perform at Oktoberfest
Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society’s Annual Oktoberfest, October 19
Accordionist Dan "Daddy Squeeze" Newton
Angel Accordionists Grace Top of National Cathedral

Manny Corallo, Guest Artist at the LIAA
Brooklyn Accordion Club to Feature Mary Tokarski and Nathan Chapeton
Tekla Klebetnica Folk Group Visits Texas Again
The Flashing Accordion
“From Broadway to the Met …. plus” features Dominic Karcic
Parlez Vous Francais?

United States National News (3)

Accordion Pops Orchestra Presents Tribute to Carmen Carrozza
Busy Times for Jane Christison
Pedone-Ballarini Accordion Clinic in Texas on Dec. 11-15

United States National News (4)

United States National News (5)

Editor's Note

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (6)In the October USA news, you will read about exciting new concerts, groups and events coming your way during the fall season.

As always, I welcome your ideas and comments. Please send them to Ritabelll@aol.com

United States National News (7)

Octoberfest Las Vegas International Accordion Festival Ready to Start - USA

by Heather Masefield, Secretary, New Zealand Accordion Association
United States National News (8)
United States National News (9)United States National News (10)I 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 PaulPasquali

The lineup starts with visionary accordionist Cory Pesaturo and bookends with a grand finale starring GraysonMasefield and the International Accordion Orchestra under the direction of the legendary Prof. JoanSommers.

You can register online at www.AccordionStars.com or contact PaulPasquali, event organizer, by phone at 1-800-472-1695 or (801) 485-5840, email: paul@accordioninfo.com.

United States National News (11)

United States National News (12)

Ginny Mac in Texas Concerts

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (13)Ginny Mac at the Kessler Theater in Dallas, Texas on 8/18/14

Accordionist and vocalist Ginny Mac, from Fort Worth, Texas, is a dynamic performer whose style embraces Country & Western Swing, Americana, Hot Jazz, and International music genres. Ginny is also a former member of the two-time Grammy Award winning group Brave Combo based in Denton, TX.

Ginny has recorded four albums, the most recent being ‘On The Street Where You Live’, a collection of classic tunes and originals, featuring many of her friends and greatest musical heroes, including accordionist JoeyMiskulin, Nashville fiddler Buddy Spicher, bassist Bob Moore (of Roy Orbison fame), and several of Nashville’s premier musicians.

“It was an unforgettable experience,” she says, “I was fortunate to learn so much and make music with these wonderful people”.

When she is not busy with an active touring schedule, Ginny is writing and arranging new original music for an upcoming album and collaborating on multiple musical projects. She currently divides her time between the Dallas/Fort Worth area and Los Angeles.

Upcoming dates:
Oct 01 The Whitehouse w/Jeff Eckles Trio in Denton, TX
Oct 02 Dream Cafe Dallas, Dallas, TX
Oct 03 Banter Bistro Concert w/ Kent Shores, Denton, TX
Oct 09 Dream Cafe Dallas, Dallas, TX
Oct 10 Fred's Cafe TCU, Fort Worth, TX
Oct 11The Live Oak Rooftop, Fort Worth, TX
Oct 16 Dream Cafe Dallas, Dallas, TX
Oct 19 Queen For A Day + Ginny Mac @ Industrial Street International Pop Festival, Denton, TX
Oct 21 Royal Dukes Showcase @ City Tavern, Dallas, TX
Oct 22 'Naturally Sweet' Bob Jones Nature Center Fundraiser @ Southlake Hilton, Southlake, TX
Oct 23 Dream Cafe Dallas, Dallas, TX
Oct 24 Cigar Art - Bishop Arts District, Dallas, TX
Oct 25 The Forge opening for Charlie Robison,Ben Wheeler, TX
Oct 31 Cirque du Horror at Texas Theatre, Dallas, TX
Nov 21 House Concert w/Kent Shores Neat-tet Album Release (details TBA), Denton, TX
Nov 23 Shipping & Receiving w/ Kent Shores Neat-tet Album Release, Fort Worth, TX

For further information: ginny@ginnymac.com

United States National News (14)

Meet Canada's Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (15)
United States National News (16)The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra will perform at The Emerald, 555 Gore Street, Vancouver, BC on Monday, October 13, 2014 at 7:PM.

The acoustic ensemble has wandered from the underground of bohemian Victoria, in Canada's lush west coast, to a new, refined sound crafted by years of constant performing and touring together. Though drawing on flamenco flourishes learned in Spain, on African percussion, on bluegrass and other roots music from across the Americas, TMO has cycled through far-flung influences and youthful forays into sounds from all over, finding new vistas of creativity that bring them closer to their own beginnings, to the people and places that have shaped them.

Friends and family, ancestors and wild characters are all honoured on "Follow My Lead, Lead Me to Follow", the band's third and most mature studio effort, with a sound that's distinct, earthy, and solid.

Members of the group include:
Kurt Loewen - Guitar and Vocals
Ian Griffiths - Accordion and Vocals
Paul Wolda - Djembe and Vocals
Keith Rodger - Contrabass
Mack Jonsson - Violin

Accordionist Ian Griffiths:Having spent years immersed in Spanish, Roma, and Italian cultures, Ian Griffiths brings spice and heat to TMO’s music. One of the three original members of the band, Ian started by playing a toy accordion, but quickly moved on to the real thing.

In a world where accordions are played by many, but understood by few, Ian has worked hard to bind classical accordion playing with experimental sounds, and alongside members of TMO works to place it within unexpected music. Ian’s song writing is based on romanticized story telling….and pirates.

Ian performs with a children s act “Captain Green Beard The Environmental Pirates” and plays regularly with “Amusette.” He can currently be found in Victoria, BC or Halifax, NS playing with former TMO fiddler, Jacques Mindreau.

The TMO group was formed in 2006. Their genre is gypsy-folk-roots-grass. Current location is BC and Alberta, Canada.

TMO have recently released a digital album which Includes high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. Paying supporters also get unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app.

Upcoming performances include:
The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra in High River, AB at Foothills Folk Club at the Masonic Hall
The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra in Cochrane, AB at Legacy Guitar House
The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra in Vancouver, BC at The Emerald
The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra in Victoria, BC at Upstairs Cabaret
The Tequila Mockingbird Orchestra in Cumberland, BC at Waverly Hot

For more information: joelle@modmaypromotions.com

United States National News (17)

Elena and Gregory in October 11 Concert

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (18)
The Dallas Telegraph presents: Dallas Accordion Celebration featuring famous Dallas accordionists Elena and Gregory Fainshtein as they introduce their second album, "Together". For more information on the Fainshtein's and their new CD, see the article in the Reports Section of the September USA news.

The concert takes place at the Allen Public Library, 300 N.Allen Dr., Allen, TX on Saturday, October 11, 2014 at 7:PM. Tickets can be purchased at Russion Stores of DFW and www.tickets.DallasTelegraph.com.

Join them for an evening of unforgettable masterpieces including selections from "Fiddler on the Roof", Henry Mancini, "Chardash", "Parisian Stage" and many more pleasant surprises. Elena's studio top students will be special guests.

For more information:

United States National News (19)

Dr. Schimmel's Busy East Coast Fall Tour

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (20)Dr. Schimmel's Busy East Coast Fall Tour

Dr. Schimmel gave six concerts at the Park Avenue Armory, Sept 13, 14, 15, 26, 27 and 29. This was a residency that was part of the Music Under Construction series. It featured the music of Kurt Weill and the collaborations with soprano Lauren Flanigan, violist Julie Goodale and pianist Christopher Cooley.

On Sept 16 and 17, he performed with The New York Philharmonic in a concert titled "La Dolce Vita", which featured music from the Italian Cinema

On September 18, 19 and 20, Dr. Schimmel appeared at The Philadelphia Fringe Festival performing Luciano Berio’s "Sequenza 13 (Chanson)" in a staged environment conducive to the time when it was written in the 1990’s (Grunge, Nirvana, Gainsbourg etc). All of the other Sequenzas (14 in all) were performed as well and the audience could move from station to station at will. David Patrick Stearns of the Philadelphia Inquirer stated: “Accordionist Bill Schimmel gave Sequenza #13 such richness you wanted repeated performances. With music this challenging, that’s saying a lot”

Dr. Schimmel's future performances include:
On October 16 and 17, Dr. Schimmel will be featured in Elliot Sharp’s new opera "Port Bou". The performances will take place at The Issue Project Room in Brooklyn. It is about the last day of philosopher Walter Benjamin.

On October 23, He will perform in Chaya Chernowin’s Winter Songs at Miller Theatre at Columbia University with the International Contemporary Ensemble ICE.

On November 10, He will be the featured guest with The New Jersey Percussion Ensemble at the William Paterson College in New Jersey. He will premiere his own works: Concerto for Accordion and mallet instruments and New York Classical for Accordion and Vibes along with his Accordiomass.

On December 6, he will appear with Christina Fontinelli at her yearly Christmas in Italy at New York’s Skirball Center performing his own “reality” on Rossini’s La Danza.

On December 7, He will perform new works by Columbia University composers at Issue Project Room in Brooklyn.

On December 9, he will perform the same program as on November 10 - at Connecticut

Dr. Schimmel and Micki Goodman’s new Video Small Hotels can be seen on YouTube.

WilliamSchimmel is a virtuoso accordionist, author, philosopher and composer. He is one of the principle architects in the tango revival in America, the resurgence of the accordion and the philosophy of Musical Reality (composition with pre-existing music). He received his diploma from the Neupauer Conservatory of Music and his BM, MS and DMA degrees from the Juilliard School. He has taught at the Juilliard School , Brooklyn College CUNY, Upsala College, New School University, Neupauer Conservatory (dean) and has lectured on accordion related subjects at Princeton , Columbia , Brandeis, University of Missouri , Duke University, Manhattan School of Music, the Graduate Center CUNY, Santa Clara University, The Janacek Conservatory in Ostrava, Czech Republic and at Microsoft.

Dr. WilliamSchimmel has performed with virtually every major symphony orchestra in America (and the Kirov ) including a longstanding relationship with the Minnesota Orchestra, as well as virtually every chamber music group in New York including Ensemble Sospeso and the Odeon Jazz Ensemble.

Pop star colleagues range from Sting to Tom Waits, who has made the legendary statement: Bill Schimmel doesn't play the accordion, he is the accordion”.

He is founder of the Tango Project, which, in addition to his hit recordings with them, has appeared with Al Pacino in the film: Scent of a Woman, for which Pacino won an Oscar. The Tango Project also won the Stereo Review Album of the Year Award, received a Grammy nomination and rose to number I on the Billboard Classical Charts. He can be heard in other films including True Lies, Kun Dun and many others including films that he both scored and performed and a series of films for the Nature Conservancy which have won numerous prizes in documentary categories.

He is an authority of the music of Kurt Weill, having recorded all of Weill's music that employs the accordion.
He is a prolific composer with many commissions from concert music to Broadway and off-Broadway. He has written countless accordion pieces for himself and others including a test piece for the CoupeMondiale, the accordions' most prestigious world competition. His Portrait No I for orchestra was conducted by the late Leopold Stockowski.

Dr. Schimmel's theatre works in collaboration with Micki Goodman have made accordion history.

For further information: billschimmel@billschimmel.com

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Guy Klucevsek to Present Original Compositions in New York

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (22)
Accordionist/composer GuyKlucevsek will perform solos he composed for collaborations with Karen Bamonte, David Dorfman, Dan Hurlin, Victoria Marks; and for the audio book of "Accordion
Crimes," by E. Annie Proulx at Musicial Ecologis: A monthly symposium on music and sound.

The performance takes place on Thursday, October 9, 2014 at 8:PM at the Old Stone House in Washington Park, 5th Ave. & 3rd St. Park Slope, Brooklyn.

Admission is by contribution. $10 is suggested.
For further information: 718-768-3195

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Accordion Pops Orchestra Concert Honors Carmen Carrozza on Nov. 2

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (24)
United States National News (25)Tickets are still available for the Accordion Pops Orchestra's tribute to Carmen Carrozza. The event takes place on Sunday, November 2nd, 2014 at 2:PM at the Hunterdon Hills Playhouse, 88 Route 173, Hampton, New Jersey 08827. Al Terzo is the conductor of the APO.

Norwegian concert accordionist Havard Svensrud will perform. Andrea Maurer, virtuoso flautist will also perform with the APO.

Lenny Feldmann will be the commentator and Master of Ceremonies.

Born on 29 January 1974 in Modum in Buskerud, Norway, Håvard has established himself as a professional performer of both classical and traditional entertainment music.

Educated in music at Barratt Dues Musikkinstitutt in Oslo with the accordion as main instrument, Håvard is the winner of various competitions, such as categories in the Norwegian Accordion Championships in 1992, 1993 and 1994, as well as in the Nordic final of Frosini Grand Prix in 1993 and the Vivian Vivio Memorial Entertainment Competition hosted by the American Accordionists Association in the United States.

HåvardSvendsrud has been in great demand as an accordionist for more than 10 years, and has frequently performed on radio and television, as a soloist and as a group musician. He has contributed to, and released, several recordings. His performances included an appearance as one of the guest artists during Oslo's 1000-year jubilee in 2000.

In addition to his solo work, on several occasions he has also appeared with different orchestras, including the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra and Forsvarets Musikkorps.

He accordion career has also included work in the theaters, among them Nationaltheatret in Oslo, and he has contributed to performances such as Spelemann på taket and Tolvskillingsoperaen.

Håvard has also worked to commission several pieces including among them Belgprisen (1992), Ticon-Prisen (2000) and Henschiens ærespris (2002).

HåvardSvendsrud was appointed ”cultural ambassador” for the Norwegian Foreign Ministry, involving a long-term commitment in Venezuela in 1995. He has also toured with his own concert program in the USA, Iceland, Finland, Italy, England and throughout Scandinavia.

Today HåvardSvendsrud works as a freelance musician, both solo and with fellow musicians Tor Bekkelund, guitar and Kay Hartvigsen, bass.

The price for the dinner and concert is $50.

For tickets and further information: Rosemarie Cavanaugh
Phone: 732-257-8198

For further information on Havard Svendsrud email:

For more information on the Accordion Pops Orchestra emai:

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Richard Galliano New CD, October Performance at the Jazz Standard, NYC

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (27)
Video: Special guest Richard Galliano and Christian Howes perform "Tango Doblado". Video published on Feb 28, 2013. Howes called the opportunity to collaborate with Galliano "inspiring", saying, "“Richard's musicianship in the studio compelled me to rise to a high level of expression. His playing is full of maturity and virtuosity.”"

The Richard Galliano Quintet will perform at The Jazz Standard in New York City, October 23rd to 26th. There are 2 or 3 shows daily: $25-$30. Tickets are still available and seating is not reserved.

Richard Galliano was born in Cannes, France in 1950, the son of an accordion teacher and a student of the instrument from the age of four. Galliano was fourteen when he discovered the music of trumpeter Clifford Brown – and later the works of adventurous accordionists from Brazil (Sivuca), Italy (Felice Fugazza), and the US (ArtVanDamme).

Over time, Galliano developed his patented “new musette” style, breathing new life into a thoroughly French tradition; he has played on countless recordings by French pop artists like Charles Aznavour and Juliette Gréco, as well as with Chet Baker, Toots Thielemanns, and Ron Carter. On such exceptional albums as New York Tango (1996, with George Mraz, Al Foster and Birélli Lagrène).

Ricardo Galliano’s technical command, mastery of phrasing, and rainbow palette of tonal colors have allowed him to surmount musical barriers with a sound that cuts across all genres.

The performers for the USA concerts are: Richard Galliano (accordion), Josh Nelson (piano)?, Peter Bernstein (guitar), George Mraz (bass), Mauricio Zottarelli (drums).

The Jazz Standard is located on 116 East 27th Street, New York, NY

For tickets call: 212-576-2232

Richard Galliano has released his new CD, "Richard Galliano Sentimentale" on September 30, 2014. The tracks are:
01. Armando's Rumba (C. Corea) 4:39
02. Canto Invierno ( D Grusin, L. Ritenour) 6:37
03. In A Sentimental Mood (D. Ellington) 7:09
04. The Jody Grind (H. Silver) 4:45
05. Ballad For Marion (R. Galliano) 5:07
06. The Island (I. Lins) 6:34
07. Plus Fort Que Nous (F. Lai) (5:49)
08. Why Did I Choose You (M. Leonard, M. Edward) 5:37
09. Verbos Do Amor (J. Donato, A.Silva) 5:23
10. Naima (J. Coltrane) 5:03
11. Mantiqueira (N. Ayres) 4:35
12. Lili (R. Galliano) 5:03

CD performers are: Richard Galliano (accordion), Tamir Hendelman (piano), Anthony Wilson (acoustic and electric guitar), Carlitos Del Puerto (upright bass), Mauricio Zottarelli (drums). Interestingly, this CD was recorded at the Rising Jazz Stars Studios in Los Angeles.

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Rosie Ledet & The Zydeco Playboys to Perform in France

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (29)
United States National News (30)The 19th ‘Le Grand Soufflet Festival’ Cajun and Zydeco festival takes place at Rennes, Ille-et-Vilaine, France, from October 2nd to 11th. Featured are Rosie Ledet & The Zydeco Playboys, from Louisiana who will perform on Friday October 10th, 9:PM, at the Parc du Thabor in Rennes.

Zydeco Music is most identified by the accordionists who lead the band. Chenier. Chavis. Delafose. A male-dominated music, but over the last 12 years, Rosie Ledet, a one-row diatonic accordionist and singer, has carved out a unique spot in the Zydeco pantheon due to her unique style.

Singing in both Creole French and English, Rosie is known for her songwriting ability, as well as her bluesy, sexy singing voice. In fact, her music has often been described as "blues with an accordion." She has established herself as one of a handful of female Zydeco accordionists.

Members of the group are:
Rosie Ledet ~ Lead Vocals & Accordion
Andre Nizzari ~ Guitar, Keyboard, & Vocals
Chuck Bush ~ Bass & Vocals
Lukey Ledet ~ Drums
Malcolm Walker ~ Scrubboard & Vocals

Other guests appearing at the Parc du Thabor include Lindigo & Fixi on Sunday October 5th, 4.30 PM and accordionist Mériadec Gouriou on October 10, 2014 at 9pm, sharing the bill with Rosie Ledet & The Zydeco Playboys.

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Rob Reich in Concerts

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (32)Rob Reich is an acclaimed accordionist, pianist, and composer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. A talented instrumentalist and an inventive composer, Rob is steeped in many traditions.
In addition to being a versatile solo performer, Rob can be heard playing with many top notch ensembles. He is a member of Tin Hat, Gaucho and The Nice Guy Trio, and freelances with many other Bay Area bands.

Rob graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Composition from Oberlin Conservatory. As a composer, Rob has strong fundamentals; stylistic breadth; and an original, irreverent voice.
Most recently, he was commisioned by David Herrera Performance Company to produce music for "The Stranger, part 1"; a 40-minute dance performance which was premiered in April 2013 

Rob is composer / music director for Circus Bella, and in 2011 released a Kickstarter-funded CD of original music for a 10-piece band.

In 2010, Rob was commissioned by the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival to compose "Sidewalks and Alleys", performed and recorded on this CD by the Nice Guy Trio and an all-star string quartet. 

Rob has written music for various collaborative projects ranging from a tune for a sexy double trapeze act to the score to a beautiful dance film noir, to a silly song about shoes.He can be followed on Facebook and Youtube.

His upcoming performances include:
Sun, Oct 5: Gaucho
11:30am - 2:30pm
Boxing Room, 399 Grove St, San Francisco, CA, US
Sun, Oct 5: Gaucho
5pm - 8pm
Brenda's French Soul Food, SF
Sun, Oct 5: Rob Reich (solo accordion)
9pm - 11pm
Dogwood, Oakland
Wed, Oct 8: Rob Reich / Ila Cantor / Dan Fabricant
5pm - 7pm
The Page Bar, 298 Divisadero St, San Francisco, CA, US
Wed, Oct 8: Gaucho
8pm - 10pm
Amnesia, SF
Sun, Oct 12: Gaucho
5pm - 8pm
Brenda's French Soul Food, SF
Sun, Oct 19: Gaucho
5pm - 8pm
Brenda's French Soul Food, SF
Mon, Oct 20: Rob Reich (solo accordion)
7pm - 9pm
Divine Cafe, SF
Wed, Oct 22: Emily Asher's Garden Party 
9pm - 12am
Wednesday Night Hop
1400 N Shoreline Blvd # A, Mountain View, California 94043
Thu, Oct 23: Emily Asher's Garden Party
9:20pm - 12:30am
920 Special
Russian Center, 2460 Sutter St, SF
Fri, Oct 24: Emily Asher's Garden Party
6:30pm - 9:30pm
Amnesia, SF
Sun, Oct 26: Gaucho
5pm - 8pm
Brenda's French Soul Food, SF
Sun, Oct 26: Emily Asher's Garden Party
9pm - 11pm
Wed, Oct 29: Gaucho
8pm - 10pm
Amnesia, SF
Thu, Oct 30: Rob Reich solo accordion
5pm - 7pm
Doc's Lab

Rob has released many CD's including "Tin Hat, "Gaucho", "Circus Bella All Star Band" "Nice Guy Trio" plus more.

For further information: robbyreichmusic@gmail.com

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New Accordion Blog

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (34)Shelia Lee, teacher and owner of Houston Accordion Performers in Houston, TX has created an accordion blog containing technique drills, ear training, a monthly lesson, practice tips and accordion arrangements from level 1 to 5 based on the Palmer Hughes lesson books. Arrangements for solo, duet, and trio from 60's and 70's will be included each month.

Shelia Lee, owner of Houston Accordion Performers in Houston, Texas attended the 2014 International Accordion Convention in Las Vegas where where she conducted two workshops designed to enhance the performance level of the intermediate accordion player. Receiving an enthusiastic response inspired her to create the blog.

Playing the accordion since she was five years old, Shelia studied with Bill Palmer and was a member of the Palmer and Hughes Accordion Symphony. Currently she performs as soloist or with bands in the Houston/Galveston area and also teaches keyboard and button accordion trough Heritage Arts Production, a non-profit organization.

Many songs are included in the October upload including "Let It Go","Here Comes the Sun","My Girl", "My Boyfriend's Back" plus Oktoberfest and Christmas songs.

For further information on accessing the blog:

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Long Island Accordion Alliance Features Mary Tokarski

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (36)The next meeting of theLong Island Accordion Alliance(LIAA)sponsored byLa Villini Restaurantis onWednesday, Oct. 1, 2014at 6:PM

The LIAA is in their fourth year of celebrating the accordion on Long Island.Come and enjoythe festive music of theLong Island Accordion Alliance(LIAA), featured guest artist internationally acclaimed accordionistMaryTokarski.

Concert Accordionist, MaryTokarski performs both nationally and internationally as a soloist, with Symphony Orchestras, with String Quartets and as a member of The 'K' Trio. Mary has appeared as a soloist with the Prince George’s Philharmonic (Maryland), the Moravian Symphony (Czech Republic), the Auckland Symphony (New Zealand), The Pioneer Valley Symphony Orchestra (Massachusetts), the Waterbury Symphony (Connecticut), the Bronxville Pops Orchestra (New York), the Hamden Symphony Orchestra (Connecticut) and most recently with the Boston Modern Orchestra Project (Massachusetts).

Mary toured mainland China with the Mantovani Orchestra, performing both in the orchestra and as a soloist, appeared in the orchestra for the musical “Fiddler On The Roof”, performed with the Wolf Trap Performing Arts Center Orchestra in the full sound track for “Lord of the Rings: Return of the King” complete with the film, and in the Opera “Four Saints In Three Acts” by Virgil Thomson and Gertrude Stein.

Mary was recently featured in the Westport Country Playhouse production of “Sing For Your Shakespeare” created by Wayne Barker, Mark Lamos and Deborah Grace Winer.

For 20 years Mary served as Director of Music Education at Tokarski Music Center in North Haven, Connecticut, where she taught piano and accordion, conducted the choral & ensemble programs, supervised the pre-school programs, and served as a Music Educator in the North Haven Department of Education's Early Childhood Development Program.

Mary currently teaches accordion and piano at her home in Northford, Connecticut. 

In collaboration with Karen Malan-Uribe (an English as a Second Language teacher in the Washington, D.C. area) and Joan Geller Grauman (an amazing illustrator/artist from Maryland), Mary selected and recorded the music and narration for the guided reader children’s book “An Accordion! What Is That?” released in 2010, and now in an iBook format.

Mary has performed internationally in Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Croatia, the Czech Republic, England, France, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Scotland and Switzerland – as well as extensively here in the United States. As a two-time United States Champion she represented the U.S. in the CoupeMondiale (World Championship) events in Belgium and France, and now serves on the Board of Directors for the American Accordionists Association, is one of the founders of the Connecticut Accordion Association, and is a member of the Accordionists and Teachers Guild, Intl. 

In addition, Mary presents Workshops and Master Classes on improving musical skills, and coaches on all aspects of performance throughout the U.S. and Canada, and recently at the Peter Soave Music Academy in Sauris, Italy. Sought after for her adjudicating skills, Mary has served numerous associations as a “regular” at festivals around the U.S. as well as serving on prestigious jury panels for world events.

New Release: “Have Yourself A Mary Merry Christmas” – a collection of Mary’s favorite listening music for the Holidays! Her previous 2 solo CDs, “Music with Mary . . . for my friends!” and “Music with Mary . . . with my friends!” have received international acclaim . . . and . . . Mary was chosen by New Zealand composer GaryDaverne to perform many of his compositions for accordion and symphony orchestra on his CD release “Rhapsody”. As a member of The "K" Trio, Mary has 3 CD releases: "Images", "Take 2", and "Classically, the "K" Trio".

For more information, to book a presentation or coaching session, or to order a CD, Mary can be reached at www.accordions.com/mary .

October 1st concert takes place at:

La Villini Restaurant
288 Larkfield Road.
East Northport, NY 11731
6:PM Phone:631 261 6344

For further information: dkarcic10@verizon.net

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Seattle Accordionist Jamie Maschler

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (38)
United States National News (39)Accordionist Jamie Maschler will perform on October 27, 2014 at the Mo' Costume Halloween Party at the Nextar Lounge, 9:PM with the Ladies of En Canto. The Nectar Lounge is located at 412 N. 36th Street in Seattle. For info on this event: 206-632-2020

A unique member of Seattle’s music scene becauseshehas played accordion since the age of four. Jamie Maschlergraduated from Cornish College of the Arts with a Bachelorsin Music and haswon several national and international accordion competitions for jazz, classical, and original compositions.

She has performed as a featured soloist at Benaroya Hall in Seattle. She has also recorded at some of the top studios in Seattle, including London Bridge, Avast, Elliott Bay Recording Company, and Clatter and Din.Ms. Maschlernow works at PetosaAccordions while pursuing a very active career in Seattle and the greater Northwest area.

Jamie starting her professional career at the age of 15 with afeature performance with the Pueblo Symphony Orchestra. Jamie has played in Rio De Janiero, Brazil, St. Lucia in theCaribbeanand All over British Columbia.

She will be back in Brazil December 2014 to host jam sessions with En Canto at the Choro Jazz Festival in Jericoacoara, Brazil.she has recentlysharedthe stage with music legends such as Jovino Santos Neto, Butch Morris, andJulianPriester. In March of 2011 Jamie performed at Beneroya Hall inSeattle withMichael York and the Lake Union Civic Orchestra for the centennial concertcelebrating local composer Alan Hovaness.

Paul de Barros in the Seattle Times, August 5, 2014, said, "En Canto formed three years ago and has become a familiar fixture at Columbia City's Royal Room, Capital Cider and at festivals such as Northwest Folklife. The septet specializes in forro, from Brazil's Northeast, a music that features accordion and flute and has a kind of honky-tonk bounce."

In 2011 Jamie performed at theParamount Theatre as part of the MerceCunningham MinEvent for the MerceCunningham Legacy Tour. This Fall sheperformed as part of the pit orchestra for Spectrum Dance Theatre’s, “TheBeast” directed by choreographer Donald Byrd.Jamie is currently workingwith classical guitarist Harold Belskus on a classical/flamenco/jazz fusion project: ACedar Suede

As aprofessional musician sheplays venues such as The Paramount and ActTheatre, Teaches masterclasses,accompanies dancers, teaches music lessonsand session work. She hasrecorded at some of the top studios in SeattleIncluding London Bridge, Elliot Bay, Studio X, Avast, Litho and Clatterand Din.

For further information: jamie.maschler@gmail.com

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Emmanuel Gasser to Perform at Oktoberfest

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (42)Published on Sep 18, 2014. Emmanuel Gasser plays his original composition, "The Happy Farmer Polka".

Canadian accordionist, 18 year old Emmanuel Gasser who lives in Saint-Charles, Ontario, will perform at the 1st Annual Oktoberfest sponsored by the Northern Lights Festival Boreal (NLFB).

Northern Lights Festival Boréal is a seasoned presenter of roots, indie, world and modern music in Northern Ontario. For 43 years, NLFB has presented its annual three day festival on the shores of Lake Ramsey, featuring renowned musical icons along with exciting emerging acts. Using the knowledge and experience gained from years of presenting a diversity of music and art, NLFB is launching a brand new festival event: Northern Lights OktoberFest.

This will be the first major Oktoberfest event for Northern Ontario, and is guaranteed to be a hit! The event, scheduled for October 3rd and 4th, will feature: craft beer tasting from a variety of breweries, a full lineup of great live music; German style foods, cultural activities and much more.

The event is both a fundraiser for NLFB and a harvest celebration, which will take place in Bell Park, along Paris St., under several giant tents. “We are beyond excited to announce this new event,” says Max Merrifield, Executive Director of the organization. “Seeing the success and reception of similar events in other regions (such as Kitchener-Waterloo), we are sure this is an event that will grow and prosper in Sudbury.”

NLFB has teamed up with Sudbury’s German Language School in order to foster a rich and interesting cultural aspect of the event. Attendees may learn a little German or a little more about Bavarian culture, while having a ton of fun. Musical programming will involve some traditional and contemporary German content, mixed with a variety of great dance bands and energetic musical entertainers.

The lineup will include two internationally renowned accordionists hailing from Sudbury: Iona Reed as well as Emmanuel Gasser, an 18-year-old virtuoso accordionist, composer, and international award winner who will be the featured performer on Friday, October 3rd from 7-8:PM.

For further information on the NLFB: 705-674-5512

United States National News (43)

Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society’s Annual Oktoberfest, October 19

by Joan Grauman Morse, AAA Historian
United States National News (44)On October 19, 2014, WMAS will host its 10th Annual Oktoberfest in Falls Church, Virginia. This year’s celebration should be a real delight with the German/Austrian dance group “Bayrisch and Steirisch” performing for us, our members playing Bavarian waltzes and polkas, playing together with music from our club’s Oktoberfest Music Book, and enjoying our special guest artist, eleven-year-old Cody McSherry.

Cody plays the Austrian diatonic accordion, the “Steirische Harmonika”, and the piano accordion beautifully, plus he is an accomplished Bavarian folk dancer. If you are in the Washington, DC area, please join us for good food, great music and dancing!

For more information, please contact JoanGrauman at: Joangrauman@verizon.net

United States National News (45)

Accordionist Dan "Daddy Squeeze" Newton

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (46)Dan "Daddy Squeeze" Newton talks about how music connects us. Artist profile video by Lucas Langworthy

"Daddy Squeeze" has been playing offbeat accordion music since 1987, when he won the Nebraska State Accordion Contest at the Czech Festival in Wilber, Nebraska. He has used the squeeze box for playing all kinds of music not normally associated with free-reed instruments, as well as standard accordion material.

Daddy Squeeze also enjoys mixing up styles and genres that don't generally seem compatible. "Music out of context", or "Ethno-clectic Bop" is the result of his gender-bending experiments with Celtic, Tex-Mex, Creole, Blues, Jazz, Scandinavian, Polka and pop music.

Dan “Daddy Squeeze” Newton has been dazzling audiences with his vast repertoire and creative accordion style for over 30 years. He is a talented composer/arranger who has produced over 25 recordings. Dan has appeared at dozens of festivals in Finland, Canada, Austria and across the USA. He has performed at Lincoln Center in New York City, Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., The Winnipeg Folk Festival and more.

Dan's fresh approach to the much-maligned squeeze-box and his mind-boggling repertoire of both original and traditional material will change the mind of the most hardened accordion skeptic. Dan draws influences for songs and tunes from such sources as French Musette, Gypsy Swing, Cajun, Jug band, Tex-Mex and Cumbia. He calls this global gumbo “ethnoclectic” music.

Daddy Squeeze entertains and enlightens his audiences with stories and colorful anecdotes about the accordion and his experiences while making a living playing the instrument he loves.

For further information: daddysqueeze@yahoo.com
Phone: 651-488-1174

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Angel Accordionists Grace Top of National Cathedral

by Pamela Tom
United States National News (48)
Accordions can be found everywhere in the world…even gracing the top of the Washington National Cathedral (WNC) located in Washington, D.C.

Jay Hall Carpenter who earned his reputation during 20 years as sculptor for the WNC was commissioned to design models for most of west towers including angel musicians ........

Read the full article at: AccordionAngels

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Jazz accordionists Frank Petrilli & Eddie Monteiro in concert, Washington, DC area

by Joan Grauman Morse, AAA Historian
Softly As In a Morning Sunrise.mp4
video from Petrilli

The audience at the September meeting of the Washington Metropolitan Accordion Society was treated to a very special performance by Guest Artist Frank Petrilli and surprise guest, jazz great, Eddie Monteiro.

The gifted duo dazzled the audience with their beautiful music, which was totally unrehearsed. Los Angeles based jazz accordionist, Frank Petrilli, performed on his new Petosa. (see article on Frank Petrilli in Accordion USA, September, 2014). New Jersey’s Eddie Monteiro plays a very special midi accordion with a 3-4 octave bass range. Only eight of these instruments were ever made. Eddie recently played on Broadway in a production of "Evita" and in Massachusetts with Chita Rivera.

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Manny Corallo, Guest Artist at the LIAA

by Dominic Karcic
United States National News (52)Accordionist MannyCorallo was the featured guest artist at the recent Long Island Accordion Alliance (LIAA) meeting on Wednesday, September 3, 2014 at La Villini Restaurant in East Northport, NY. He was accompanied by his very close friend and drummer Tony Drago. Their very diversified program covered classical, jazz, pop and ethnic selections and was greatly appreciated by the room filled with patrons.

Corallo is a very highly gifted accordionist and arranger who has mastered the instrument and achieved virtuoso abilities. He is one of the members of the acclaimed "Amazing Accordion Kings" that features noted jazz accordionist Angelo DiPippo.

Please see the following site for more information on Manny:


United States National News (53)


by Anita Siarkowsi
United States National News (54)The American Accordionists’ Association celebrated “Valtaro” on September 28, 2014 at Riccardo’s in Astoria, Queens, New York and honored a major contributor to this unique style of music, piano accordionist Frank Toscano.

At age 8, Frank Toscano began taking accordion lessons from Emilio Chiesa, originally from Borgo Taro, Italy, where “Valtaro”, the regional folk music, originated. Emilio, who was the most influential person in Frank’s entire musical career, taught him the entire Valtaro repertoire - and so much more - by the time the young Toscano was 12 years of age.

At the time, Emilio was performing at Webster Hall in New York City with another remarkable accordionist, Gelso Pellegrini. Frank’s parents, Fiorenzo and Ida Toscano, were attending an affair there. So Emilio suggested that Frank, his student of 4 years, bring his instrument along to accompany him on a few songs. So, Frank’s father packed up his son’s squeeze box, and off they went. The young Toscano, though terrified, plunked out “Allegro Waltz” and “Parisienne Polka” with his teacher - the start of Frank’s lifelong musical career.

Frank continued his studies with Emilio, who suggested that at age 16, Frank Toscano perform in New York City at the Val-Taro – a dance hall featuring folk music from the Val di Taro region of northern Italy. The establishment was owned and operated by accordionists Peter Delgrosso - a.k.a Filomena, and John Brugnoli - a.k.a Scudlin, the founder of the Valtaro Musette Orchestra. These business partners, along with managing their restaurant,entertained as an accordion duet.

As time went on, John needed another accordionist to accompany him when Peter got sick,. That’s when Frank first met Gelso Pellegrini, who was also performing at Val-Taro. Although10 years Frank’s senior, Gelso and Frank bonded and becoming lifelong friends.

Gelso wanted Sundays off, so he invited Frank to audition, and ultimately fill in for him at Val-Taro. So, Frank’s father brought 16 year old Frank and his accordion to perform for Gelso. Scared to death, Frank played, and was pleasantly surprised by Gelso’s response... “Wow! What technique! You’re great! So impressed with Frank’s performance, Gelso hired him on the spot to play at Val-Taro on Sundays!

A month later, Gelso moved on from Val-Taro to perform at “In Boboli”, his teacher, Aldo Bruschi's night club. Frank was offered the opportunity to replace Gelso at Val-Taro. Being only 16, Frank was a bit reluctant, wondering if he was good enough. However, Frank bit the bullet and immediately began performing at Val-Taro on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays. He considered himself very privileged, being among the ranks of many notable accordionists who performed at this prestigious venue during its existence from 1936 to 1961.

Young Frank was in for quite an experience working with John Brugnoli... John didn’t talk on the bandstand, but would just sit there and smoke between songs. Frank never knew what John was going to play next. Aware of John’s pattern, Gelso advised Frank... “Just follow John. You’ll be fine.” Frank and the drummer, Tony Marco, somehow managed to endure, given their common concern......”Help me make it through the night!”

Speaking of biting the bullet, Frank, though very young, was not that innocent...He was breaking the law! The legal drinking age in New York was 18, and Frank was working at a bar at 16. So, whenever the police came by to check things out at Val-Taro, the owners would hide Frank in the cellar with the booze, food, and supplies. Frank stayed out of sight until the cops left the building! They could’ve closed down the place!

For 2 years, from age 16 to 18, Frank entertained at Val-Taro until one Friday night when he showed up for work to find no one around. Val-Taro was not only closed, but under demolition! Who knew? Not Frank! Val-Taro had been sold, but no one bothered to tell the ‘cordine player!

That was the end of Val-Taro. Being “the last of the Mohicans”, Frank’s feathers might’ve been ruffled at the time, but before long, he got on the warpath and drummed up business.

Being perfectly “Frank”, his musical career continued to be successful. The best was yet to come. At18, Frank started teaching accordion, going house to house. By 23, he was performing in the Playboy Club in Manhattan (in the Play Room, no less) 6 nights a week for 2 months. While still 23, Frank opened his very own music school in Astoria, Queens, New York - “Frank Toscano Music School” with over 100 accordion students.

Now 50 years later, Frank is “golden”! He and his studio are still going strong. He must be doing something right....Just being “Frank”, I guess! Over the years, Frank produced outstanding students, including MannyCorallo and Fred Finn - who both won the virtuoso soloist competitions in Long Island, New York.

Memories..... Frank’s S.U.V. was stolen during a club date in the Bronz. He reported it to the police, who found Frank’s vehicle in Harlem! The police escorted Frank there with pulled guns! Some nights he performed during a full moon, bringing out all the crazies! Those were the days!

Aside from recording with Angelo DiPippo on “Country Polkas”, and Mario Tacca’s “Nostalgia”, Frank has two CDs with the Accordion Kings....Frank, MannyCorallo, and Angelo DiPippo - “Accordion To Frank” and “Amazing Accordion Kings”Volumes 1 and 2. Angelo, who calls Frank “Tuscan”, first heard Frank play at Magnanini Winery. Accordin’ to Angelo, Frank is a great guy, very laid back, a wonderful accordion player, great jazz person, exceptionally good person, very unassuming, wrapped up in his music, but never toots his own horn.

With appreciation for all he has done for the accordion world....Congratulations, Frank Toscano!!! Keep it up (just being Frank)!!!

United States National News (55)

Brooklyn Accordion Club to Feature Mary Tokarski and Nathan Chapeton

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (56)On Sunday, October 14, 2014 from 2-4 PM the Brooklyn Accordion Club will have two special guests: MaryTokarski, a concert accordionist, and her student Nathan Chapeton (14 years old), who will represent the U.S. and compet in ethe Junior Virtuoso Entertainment Division at the CoupeMondiale 2014 in Austria.

MaryTokarski will provide a workshop "TECHNIC - YOUR STYLE, YOUR WAY", and Nathan will play his program for the competition.

If you are interested in performing a piece or two at the meeting, please email the BAC. Beginners and first timers are welcome.

Nathan Chapeton, through the Kickstarter Fundraising Campaign, has raised the necessary funds to support his travels to Salzburg, Austria for the CoupeMondiale 2014. Nathan has been qualified by the American Accordion Association.

His worthwhile ideal is to "Introduce the Accordion to the modern world" and keep the tradition and music of this beautiful instrument alive for the next generation. His future 4 year goal is to pursue further University studies upon completion of High School and find further grants for this.

For further information: brooklynaccordionclub@gmail.com

United States National News (57)

Tekla Klebetnica Folk Group Visits Texas Again

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (58)
As contributed by James Smock:

After a very sucessful tour of Texas last year, four members of the Polish folk group Tekla Klebetnica, Zygmunt Czupryn, Anna Adamowska, Wojciech Świerczyna, and Marcin Bobak will be coming back to Texas in September and October as guests of Bryan residents Jim and Kathy Mazurkiewicz.

The talented group came in second place in “Mam Talent” or “Got Talent” in Warsaw last year competing with contestants from Poland, Ukraine, Slovakia and other countries. They were the only musical group to make the finals with over 8,000 different performances that originally applied for the contest.

Tekla Klebetnica will be busy playing their beautiful music at various venues in Texas for almost a month. Their Texas tour will include performances in Houston, Austin, College Station, Chappell Hill, Anderson, Floresville and Bremond including a special Polish Day performance at the State Capitol as guests of Governor Perry. They will also play and sing at Catholic Mass for Our Lady of Czestochowa in Houston, St. Mary in Bremond and St. Stanislaus in Anderson.

The “Tekla Klebetnica” band began their career in 2006, when Zygmunt and Ania met playing Polish Highlander music together. Over time, they were interested in looking into other folk music including traditional Polish, Slovakian, Hungarian, Romanian and Gypsy melodies performed in their own arrangements.

Each of the four musicians was connected to music since childhood from the ages of 5 and 6 years old. Later, Ania and Marcin studied music at the Music Academy in Katowice and Marek studied at the Music Academy in Krakow. Zygmunt is the only one of the group that is self-taught.

In addition, Ania and Marcin grew up with traditional Polish folk music, Marek with Slovakian and Gypsy music and Zygmunt was a member of an orchestra and they each draw inspiration from their roots. They have played all over Europe including countries such as Ireland, Germany, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Italy, Georgia and Uzbekistan. They have played in many festivals including Taca Dancer, Musicastrada, Sharq Taronalari, Art Gen, The World of Accordion and many others. One of their musical highlights was performing with world gypsy musician and European Star, Maestro Roby Lakatos and his ensemble.

Tekla Klebetnica Performances in Texas:
Thursday, October 2, 2014 
Marcin and Wojciech, two of the four musicians leave for Poland to return to college
Thursday, October 2, 2014 
Ania and Zygmunt leave for the International Balloon Festival in Albuquerque, New Mexico
Saturday, October 11, 2014 at 
12 noon Play with Jim Mazurkiewicz and Polska Kapela for the Scarecrow festival in Chappell Hill
Sunday, October 12, 2014 at 
10:00 a.m. Play for St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Anderson
 at 2:00 p.m. Play with Brian Marshal and friends for St. Stanislaus Annual Homecoming
Tuesday, October 14, 2014 
Zygmunt and Ania leave for Poland to return to work and college

For further information: info@teklaband.pl

United States National News (59)

The Flashing Accordion

by Donna Dee Ray
United States National News (60)I have been asked by Lynn Ewing, President of SFAC, to share my special story. The San Francisco Accordion Club, and Paul Cain in particular, were “instrumental” in bringing a nearly five decade pursuit of mine to a beautiful conclusion.

I grew up in Kansas City, Missouri and studied accordion from JoanCochranSommers from age six through eighteen. During that time I was concert mistress for the UMKCAccordionOrchestra and won first place in the AAA Virtuoso division at age seventeen. My intent was to attend college at the University of Missouri at Kansas City Conservatory of Music concentrating in Accordion. Instead, upon high school graduation, I went on tour with Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians playing Cordovox in the orchestra, and eventually married Dennis Ray, a singer with the group.

At age twelve, my father bought me a special accordion from Cecil and Joan Cochran, the future JoanSommers. I did not know that it was one of a kind but I loved it as did all of my friends. It was a Giulietti accordion with lights corresponding to notes being played. A year before my wedding, money was short and I sold that accordion to pay for my wedding dress. My immature thinking was that I would be playing Cordovox for the rest of my days and would not need this accordion.

For years I regretted letting that accordion go and searched decades for it. My husband heard about my “Light- Up Accordion” all those years but he had never seen it. I always wished that my children and grandchildren could have enjoyed seeing it played. My search for that accordion ended last year when I learned that it belonged to a collector of accordions. JoanSommers sent me an email attachment of a San Francisco Accordion Club newsletter with a picture of Paul Cain holding that treasured accordion.

I contacted Paul by email once to let him know that I was the original owner. I simply said that if he ever decided to sell it to please let me know. I am a board member for the Accordionists and Teachers Guild and knew seeing the accordion at the 2014 ATG festival was going to be bittersweet. It had been 47 years since it was in my possession. Somehow over the years, it made its way to San Francisco and was in the estate of John Molinari, a prominent virtuoso accordionist, teacher, and a Giulietti-sponsored artist and dealer.

Two years ago, Paul Cain purchased a half-dozen accordions from the granddaughter of John Molinari. This unique light-up accordion was among the accordions that had been stored for years in a basem*nt garage. The granddaughter did not know where it came from, but said that it had been in the family for years. Paul restored these accordions and added them to his large collection of sixty accordions. For this accordion, he converted the system from AC powered to a battery pack system and replaced incandescent flash light bulbs with LED lights.

I know that this prototype one-of-a-kind accordion must have been Paul Cain’s most prized accordion in his collection. During the week of the ATG festival, I again said a few times, “If you ever decide to sell it, please let me know.” I did not really believe he would ever be interested in parting with it.

Well, the night before the last day of the festival, Paul sat down beside me and said, “You have an accordion that I would like to have.” I had forgotten mentioning that I had a fabulous new acoustic/digital accordion that I was going to have to sell because it was too heavy for me to manage.I cautiously said, “Do you mean you would trade the lighted Giulietti?” I would have mortgaged my house to get this treasured accordion back in my possession. A trade was perfect! You cannot put a price on something that is priceless.

Paul is very happy and I am overjoyed! “I left my heart in San Francisco” when I brought my Light-Up Giulietti Accordion home after a 47-year absence.

Information about Donna:
Donna Dee (Anderson) Ray began taking accordion lessons at age six from JoanCochranSommers. At age fifteen she became concert mistress of the fifty-member Accordion Orchestra at the University of Missouri at Kansas City Conservatory of Music. She won the American Accordionists Association Virtuoso Championship at age seventeen.

The following year, upon high school graduation, Donna Dee began touring with Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians playing Cordovox as an orchestra member and featured soloist. During her five-year stint, she met her husband, Dennis Ray, who was a singer with the group. They discontinued touring to start their family. Later, Donna Dee and Dennis formed a musical duo. They also performed many years with their three children.

When The Ray Family children grew up, Donna Dee transitioned into becoming an elementary school music teacher continuing her joy of teaching music to children.

Mrs. Ray recently retired from a twenty-eight year teaching career. In addition to music classroom teaching, she directed outstanding extra-curricular performance groups at her school to include Chorus, Chime Choir and Orff ensembles. She has often been a guest clinician/director for All-County groups in her county and other counties around the state of Florida.

Donna Dee earned both Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of Central Florida.In 2002, she earned National Board Certification, the first year it opened to music teachers. She has earned Levels I, II, and III certifications in Orff pedagogy which is an approach that uses "process-teaching", incremental steps, to achieve successful performance outcomes for young music students.

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“From Broadway to the Met …. plus” features Dominic Karcic

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (62)“From Broadway to the Met …. plus”featuring vocalistCheryl Spielmanand accordionistDominic Karcic - Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Come hear the music from the American Song Book, Broadway, Tin Pan Alley, Opera, Operetta plus much more with vocalistCheryl Spielmanand accompanied by accordionistDominic Karcic.

Place:La Villini Restaurant
288 Larkfield Road.
East Northport, NY 11731
6:30 pm

Reservations are recommended. Seating is limited.

Contact: Frank 631.261.6344

United States National News (63)

Parlez Vous Francais?

by Anita Siarkowsi
United States National News (64)It was “Encore” for Anita and Bob Siarkowski of Plantsville, Connecticut ... This year, 2014, was the husband and wife piano accordionists’ 6th consecutive year representing the U.S. A. in the international accordion festival, Carrefour Mondial de l’Accordeon in Montmagny, Quebec, Canada. The Quebecois really love and appreciate accordion music claiming that Anita and Bob Siarkowski’s coordinated, theme related outfits are unprecedented.

Montmagny’s 26th annual event ran from August 28th through September 1st, 2014 – attracting 35,000 people – including 80 musicians from the Canadian provinces of Quebec, Ontario, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia – as well as Spain, Bulgaria, Russia, France, Serbia, Ireland, Italie, and Argentina!

Amongst the international guest artists was MaryTokarski of Northford, Connecticut who performed in concert. This was an “encore” for Mary, having previously performed at this event with her sister, Julie and brother, Walter as “The ‘K’ Trio”.

Featured highlights of the event included exhibits, conferences, workshops, concerts, dances, the accordion museum, strolling accordionists in 10 area restaurants, and after hours jam sessions. Anita’s French heritage and high school French helped her to serve as interpreter while in the very French Canadian province of Quebec.

Laissez les bon temps rouller! Let the good times roll!

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United States National News (66)

Accordion Pops Orchestra Presents Tribute to Carmen Carrozza

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (67)
The Accordion Pops Orchestra conducted by Al Terzo will present a memorial tribute to Carmen Carrozza on Sunday, November 2,2014 at 2:PM at the Hunterdon Hills Playhouse, 88 Route 173 West, hampton, New Jersey.

The Commentator and Master of Ceremonies will be Lenny Feldmann. Featured performers include accordionist Havard Svensrud, Flautist Andrea Maurer, and LouCoppola and the Stereo Strings.

For tickets and information: Rosemarie Cavanaugh 732-257-8198

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Busy Times for Jane Christison

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (69)
JaneChristison maintains a very busy fall season performing in varied venues.

On Sunday, October 5, 2014, 1:00-1:45 PM, she will perform at Faulkner’s Ranch, 10600 Raytown Road, Kansas City, Missouri Phone: 816-761-5055.

It’s Pumpkin Season at Faulkner’s Ranch, and they’re celebrating Grandparents Weekend with lots of fun activities including a performance by Janie Next Door!

Jane's enthusiasm and big smile gives everyone a happy boost for the day. Jane said, "Thursday, October 23, 2014, 6:30-8:30 PM is the annual Enchanted Forest put on by the city of Lenexa, Kansas, which reminds me that I need to get started figuring out what Halloween costume to wear this year.

In between now and then are more preschool performances.I played a preschool last week, and they were celebrating “Farm Day.” Instead of playing my usual repertoire, it was fun to come up with some traditional children’s songs to fit the theme. And it wouldn’t be October without Oktoberfest celebrations to play for. I also have several performances for seniors using my Music With A Smile® trademark."

Jane is also a member of the Recording Academy which is the Grammy's organization. Jane was featured in the September KC Parent's Inside Scoop feature. Kristina Light, writer, said, "Musician, singer, songwriter JaneChristison is also known as Janie Next Door®. Her newest musical venture is writing children’s songs and performing as Janie Next Door® in upbeat, entertaining, interactive, live musical programs for children at preschools, elementary school concerts, festivals, libraries, birthday parties and other special occasions."

For more information:
janec@musicwithasmile.com or call

Pedone-Ballarini Accordion Clinic in Texas on Dec. 11-15

by Rita Barnea
United States National News (70)United States National News (71)The Texas Accordion Clinic will be held in New Braunfels, Texas at the TBarM Ranch from Dec. 11-15, 2014.

At this event there will be nothing but fun, good food, good music….. five days of accordion and a great opportunity to learn and hear some of the greatest performers, composers, and teachers in the accordion world.

Topic will include Embellishments, Technique, Computer Music/Writing, Bellows Technique Ala Tony Lovello, Delivering Your Message, Fake Books and Harmonizing.

The accordion clinic features: Five Days, Participants Concerts, Solo performances daily, Study Groups/Bands of 4-6 people, Ballroom Dancing Every Night, Guest Artist Tony Lovello, Group Lessons, Workshops, Jam Sessions, Concerts Daily, Beautiful Learning Environment, Good Food and Drink, Impromptu Performances and much more!

Nick Ballarini began accordion studies in Chicago at the ae of eight with Armando Pizzi, Antonio Rosanova who wrote Phil Baker Method Books, and Anthony Rizzo. At the age of 14, he could play note for note along with DickContino recordings and began to perform Professionally as a soloist at "Rany's on Miochigan Avenue".

The US Navy with its School of Music, was an excellent place for Nick to hone his skills as an accordionist and pianist by playing in big bands combos and concert bands. After an honorable discharge, he resumed work in Chicago and began teaching accordion, piano, and organ. While teaching for Lyon and Healy, he began accordion studies with Leon Sash.

Now residing in Dallas, Texas with his family, Nick plays for weddings, corporate events and jazz festivals as an accordionist/pianist and band leader including the Avignon Quintet and The Alpine Five. During Nick'es career, he has performed with many prominent musicians such as Lucian Pavarotti, Mel Torme, and the Chieftans. Nick's long term goals include recording and composition while he continues with his performances, accordion repair/restoration and sales.

Mario Pedone is originally from a small town near Bari in Southern Italy. At the age of 8, Mario and his family moved to Valencia, Venzuela where he learned to play the accordion under the direction of several renowned professors, earning a degree as an accordion 'maestro'. He is a participant and director for several prestigious events and organizations, including his own school, Academia Latina de Acordeon.

Mario has performed professionally in South America, Europe and Canada with an extensive repertoire of classical, Latin, European and American standards, as well as award-winning original compositions.

The deadline for registration is November 25, 2014. Registration Form at: 2014Clinic

For further information: Email Nick Ballarini

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