Galla-Rini's long-term contribution to the international development
of the accordion as a performer, composer, arranger, teacher, and
in numerous other capacities is truly without parallel. All connected
with Accordions Worldwide salute the Maestro as he celebrates his
102nd birthday, and pay due homage his lifelong contributions to the
Maestro Anthony Galla-Rini Celebrates his 102nd Birthday, California
- USA Contributed
Anthony Galla-Rini celebrated his 102nd birthday on January 18th
at his residence in Corona, California. In October, Accordionists
and Teachers Guild (ATG) Board of Directors Kevin
Friedrich and Liz Finch visited Maestro Galla-Rini and reported
that he was in good spirits. Mr Galla-Rini joked that he supposed
now, he would have to live another 100 years!
Throughout his career - his performances, his compositions, his
recordings, his arrangements, his musical direction, his teaching,
his leadership role in the worldwide accordion community, his inspiration
and in general his love for the accordion has touched us all.
60 years ago, Anthony Galla-Rini was one of the 29 founding members
of the ATG, which he now serves as President Emeritus. In 1951 he
travelled to the Confédération
Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA) General Assembly
in Paris, France where he successfully petitioned the ATG's
membership into the CIA.
To this day, the ATG and American
Accordionists' Association, of whom he was also a founding member,
take an active and valuable role in CIA activities as they endeavor
to promote the accordion in the international arena, including hosting
the 2007 Coupe Mondiale World Accordion Championships in the United
Galla-Rini's efforts on behalf of the ATG laid the groundwork for
them to work on a global level with fellow national accordion organizations
from around the world as well as establish affiliation to the International
Music Council, the largest non-governmental sector of UNESCO.
In 1984 the CIA proudly acknowledged Galla-Rini's outstanding contributions
to the international accordion movement by awarding him the 'CIA
Merit Award' at the General Assembly in Folkestone, England.
Galla-Rini's profound impact on the accordion movement continues
to this day, and will last forever. Anthony Galla-Rini spent his
102nd birthday surrounded by your family and friends at his residence
Luis Castaño, Spanish concert accordionist and Professor
of Accordion in the Superior Conservatory of Music in Zaragoza (Spain),
will make a concert tour in the Canary Islands, from January 25th
He will visit five islands including Lanzarote, Fuerteventura, Hierro,
La Palma and Gomera. This tour presents Ananda Sukarland (piano),
the Aragón String Quartet and Angel Luis Castaño (accordion).
Their program includes 'Fantasía' for accordion by David del
Puerto (National Music Award for composers 2005) - dedicated to Angel
Luis Castaño, 'El Gran Tango', and 'Five Tango Sensations',
by Astor Piazzolla, and also music by Ravel and Schumann. More information
about other concerts is on the website of Angel
Recently Angel Luis Castaño has created a website for Classical
In this new website we will find new pieces for classical Accordion
and others. It is very high quality music and the prices are really
competitive. Composers as Jesús Rueda, Patrick Busseuil, Joseph
Soler, César Camarero, Jorge Taramasco and Viatcheslav
Semionov are or will soon be available. Angel Luis Castaño
is the Artistic Director of Acco- Music. Spanish accordionist Raquel
Ruiz and Javier Ramos collaborate also in this new website.
Unveiled at the NAMM Winter Show, California - USA
Contributed by Rob
annual NAMM Winter Show is taking place from January 19th to 22nd
in the Convention Center, Anaheim, California. This large-scale
trade exhibition of musical instruments and products, including
Accordions, also features a demonstration of a new type of accordion
known as the 'hyper-accordion.'
'hyper-accordion' has been designed and developed by accordionist
Michael Ward-Bergeman (left picture). This accordion allegedly transcends
the traditional instrument, bringing this naturally stereo instrument
into what is claimed to be 'a new sonic realm' with the help of
the Eventide Eclipse® stereo effects processor.
"When I developed the hyper-accordion, my goal was to stretch
the boundaries of what the traditional instrument could do,"
said Ward-Bergeman. "Paramount to this goal from the beginning
was effects processing. The accordion is one of the world's only
true stereo instruments, which gave me a tremendous amount of room
to explore new sounds with my customized stereo miking configuration".
Ward-Bergeman enhances each tone with a multitude of effects, enabling
the instrument in concert with the Eclipse to produce a wide variety
of sounds. Michael Ward-Bergeman has recently performed on the on
the film score for 'North Country' and the recent Grammy-nominated
Deutsche Grammophone recording of Osvaldo Golijov's 'Ayre.'
and composer Marco Lo Russo has released a new CD 'Tarabuk'. The publicity
for this recording states that the accordion "is enriched with
enormous harmonic and polyphonic possibilities."
Marco Lo Russo's accordion is in duet with Tiziano Zanotti (double
bass), and the publicity says: "The double bass, which in popular
tradition is seen as an accompaniment pizzicato instrument, in 'Tarabuk'
is played with the bow to make melodies in a XIX centuries' classical
The music is described: "It is difficult to classify this music:
original pieces, improvisations, Mediterranean atmospheres, tango,
Eastern European impressions, classical and contemporary sounds create
a concert of pure music".
Ruggieri recently won an award as the best jazz accordionist following
a readers' referendum called New Talents by the Italian magazine Music
Jazz. Renzo has released a several
CD's during the past two years and ther is a Celebrity
Interview of Renzo Ruggieri online too. Congratulations to Renzo
Ruggieri on this jazz music success.
Schimmel and his trio, Project Vienna, performed for Jann Wenner's
60th birthday party at Le Bernardin (one of the world's famous four
star restaurants) in New York. Mr. Wenner is the publisher and editor
of Rolling Stone Magazine.
Schimmel was personally invited by Paul Shaffer (musical director
of the David Letterman Show) with the knowledge that Dr. Schimmel
would supply the Cafehaus 'Seantic' ambiance to an event that was
centred around Rock and Roll as well as literary figures - in other
words, the ultimate cafe in everyone's imagination.
The 250 invited guests included Bruce Springsteen (who later performed),
Robin Williams, Yoko Ono - who recited new words to her late husband
John Lennon's 'Imagine' just for the occasion - Tom Wolfe, Bette Midler,
Jimmy Webb, Richard Gere, and former US Vice President Al Gore - just
to name a few. The members of Project Vienna are Jeff Carney (bass),
Laura Seaton (violin) and William Schimmel (accordion).
Kragujevac Music School and Music Center Ad Libitum are to organize
the 3rd international competition for young accordionists STAR WAYS
2006. The competition will be held in Kragujevac between March 27th
and 31st. Full details are available, and the closing date for entries
is February 15th.
During January a number
of NAO regional festivals
will be held. On the 22nd the Midland's Area held in Leicester will
be hosted by Pauline Noon, NAO General Secretary while on Saturday
28th January festivals in Glasgow Scotland hosted by Brian and Graham
Laurie and Northern Ireland hosted by Clyde Johnston will be held.
Adjudicators at these festivals include Ivan Black, Larysa Bodell,
Karolyn Broadhead, John Carmichael and Graham
Laurie. These festivals, part of the series of 10 regional festivals
form the qualification for the NAO UK National Competitions to be
in Scarborough from 5th - 7th May.
Krzanowski Accordion Competition - Poland Contributed
2nd International Andrzej Krzanowski Accordion Competition, takes
place in Czechowice-Dziedzice (near Bielsko-Biala), Slaskie, Poland,
from September 27th to 30th. The competition is for accordionists
of all nations who are born after 27th September 1976.
Gras Ball, Rhode Island - USA
Contributed by Rob
14th annual Mardi Gras Ball is a celebration of Cajun and Zydeco music
and culture held on February 25th at Rhodes On The Pawtuxet, 60 Rhodes
Place, Cranston, Rhode Island, New England. (Left picture from
the 2005 13th Annual Mardi Gras Ball.)
The 2006 artistes include Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, Geno
Delafose and French Rockin' Boogie, and Balfa Toujours. The event
opens with a Zydeco dance on the evening of February 24th featuring
accordionist CJ Chenier and the Red Louisiana Band at The German Club,
78 Carter Ave, Pawtucket.
Accordion Festival, Lancashire - UK
Contributed by Rob
Blackpool Accordion Festival takes place from April 28th to May 1st
at the Norbreck Castle Hotel. The guest artistes include Jean-Louis
Noton (France), Ivar Dagenborg, Geir Aage and Ottar Johansen (Norway),
Rosemary Wright (England) and Ian Cruikshanks (Scotland). Activities
include a trade show, an auction, orchestras, workshops, concerts
On January 22nd
a special concert will be given in honor of Anthony Galla-Rini, by
the Donostiako Akordeoi Orkestra Sinfonikoa and the Orquesta Sinfónica
de Acordeones de San Sebastien. Mikel Bikondoa will conduct both orchestras.
The program features the works of Galla-Rini - Sonata No 1, Concerto
No1 and Concerto No 2. The concert begins at 12 noon and takes place
at the Gran Salón de Plenos del Excmo, Ayuntamiento, Donostia.
Piccini releases 2 new compositions of 'Canadian
Rag' and 'Tonight's
Waltz'. Samples of the music are available online. The music is
in eSheet format, able to be emailed to your computer. Purchase with