The accordion world was saddened to learn of the passing away of renowned composer Anatoli Kusiakov on July 11, 2007. Kusiakov was born in the region of Ushe Ivanovsk on June 7, 1945.
He finished his studies of composition at the music pedagogical Institute of Rostov (class of L. P. Klinitchev) in 1971 and reached the grade of “Aspirantura” at the Conservatory in Moscow (class of S. A. Balasanyan) in 1974.
Since 1974 he has been teaching composition and instrumentation, became Rector (1981-88) and since 1989 Professor at the Music Pedagogical Institute in Rostov (since 1992 called the Rachmaninoff Conservatory). Renowned for his composing and teaching, he was awarded the Merited Artist of Russia title in 1986. He was prize-winner at the all Russian Competition for composers in 1977.
In 2003, the Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA) awarded Kusiakov the CIA Merit Award, at the General Assembly of Delegates in Helsinki, Finland in recognition of his life long work and outstanding contributions to the International accordion movement.
During the 15th International Festival "Bayan and Bayanists" held in Moscow in December 2004, a concert was dedicated to his works which have had a great influence on the bayan literature. On this occasion the “Silver Disk” for special achievements attained during a musical career was awarded to him.
His works include:
-Cloud” for Symphony Orchestra and Vocals
-Theater Music for Bayan,
-Sonata No. 1 (1979) dedicated to Viatcheslav Semionov
-Sonata No. 2 (1981, dedicated to Viatcheslav Semionov
-Sonata No. 3 (1978)
-Sonata No. 4 (1990)
-Sonata No. 5
-Sonata No. 6 - Winter Sketches Suite (1981) dedicated to Viatcheslav Semionov
-Fuga and Burleska (1981)
-Five Spanish pictures for Flute and Bayan (1990)
-Autumn Landscapes Suite (1989)
-Three Miniatures (1990)
-Partita in four parts (1990)
-Elegic music for Bayan – “Farewell” (1990)
-Concert for Bayan and Chamber Orchestra (1998)
-Spring Pictures” Suite (1999)
-Sonata No. 7 - Misterium (March 2006) dedicated to Mika Väyrynen
Note: Sonata No. 7 is believed to have been his last work, and Mika Väyrynen will perform the world premiere in Spring 2008.
‘Nuits de Nacre’ Accordion Festival, Tulle - France
The 19th annual Tulle Accordion Festival takes place from September 13th to 16th. Known as the Nuits de Nacre, most of the approximately 70 concerts take place in the evenings in marquees, an open-air stage, the municipal theatre, and various restaurants, brasseries and bars in the centre of Tulle.
There are also usually numerous 'unofficial' bands and artistes performing. The festival takes place within easy travelling distance of the Maugein accordion factory.
The guest artistes include: AGGHIR, Amachao, Bad Blues Band, Blankass,
Chantier chorégraphique, Christian Pierron, Christiane Courvoisier,
Coopération Finlande, Délinquante, Duo Tras, Gérard Blanchard,
Aufray, Jaal, Jean Corti, Kimmo Pohjonen, La belle vie, La Mainada, Le
de Seilhac, Le Rancho, Les Becs Bien Zen, Les Maux de la Rue, Lés
Manif des lames diatoniques, Mardigrâve, Michel Jonasz, Nino and
Orchestre Jerome Richard, Orchestre National de Jazz, Pusse,
Scott Taylor, Targhi Nuschma, Tournée Générale, Trio Jacky
Vuelvo and Weepers Circus.
Russian accordionist Alexander Shirunov has just returned from a tour of Scandinavia, where he performed on two famous festivals, the annual Sata-Häme Soi Festival in Ikaalinen, Finland and the Ransater Accordion Festival in Sweden. Both events have been running for more than 20 years, and offer diverse and spectacular programs.
As the second prizewinner of the 1st Primus Ikaalinen Competition (2005), Alexander was invited as a guest artist to the 35th Sata-Häme Soi Accordion Festival this year. Playing several times on different stages, he also had the opportunity to enjoy the wonderful atmosphere of the event, and to listen and watch the very exciting 3rd Primus Ikaalinen Competition, which was, without any doubts, the highlight of the festival!
The Ransater Accordion Festival is billed as one of the biggest accordion events in the world and features performers mainly from Norway, Sweden and Denmark, as well as some international guests. Alexander performed twice on the main stage, a big open-air amphitheatre, which drew over 2,000 people to his second concert. Alexander's program included works by S. Hylen, C.
Jularbo, P. Frosini - P. Deiro, A. Astier and others. For more information on Alexander Shirunov and his latest CD, please visit
Half-Century Celebration at ‘Accordion Connection’, New Hampshire – USA
On July 21st there will be a ‘Ladies Day’ series of concerts featuring women accordionists at ‘Accordion Connection’, 136 NH Route 106, Unit 1, Gilmanton, New Hampshire. The program includes Scottish, French, Classical, and popular music. Concerts are at 10 am - Sylvia Miskoe, 12 noon - Mary Tokarski, 1 pm - Anita & Bob Siarkowski, and 2 pm - Donna Maria Regis.
Visitors may bring accordions for free appraisal or repair estimate, as professional technicians will be on hand to answer questions. The Accordion Connection showroom will also be open for visitors to see and try accordions that are available for sale. Brunch buffet will be served so visitors will not have to leave the premises and miss any of the performers.
The ‘Ladies Day’ concerts on July 21st celebrate 50 years of business at ‘Accordion Connection’, opened in 1957 by proprietor Arthur Welch.
The Portuguese accordionist, João Gentil, has more than 30 concerts for the months of July and August in Portugal and on the islands of the Azores. The duo João Gentil and Luís Formiga - drums, will play repertoire of Astor Piazzolla, Richard Galliano, Gotan Project, Yann Tiersen, Renzo Ruggieri, among others. The musical arrangements are by João Gentil and Luis Formiga, with electro-tango and jazz influences. The creativity and versatility of this duo has been growing steadily.
Concert dates include:
July 13th - Fórum de Coimbra, Portugal – an event of modern music organized by the Doctor Watch jewellery store.
15th - ‘Mistérios da Música’ – S. Caetano, Portugal
22nd to 25th – EXPOFACIC – Cantanhede, Portugal
23rd - Festas S. Tomé, Mira
24th – Semana Cultural de Ançã, Terreiro do Paço
28th – Escadas para o Céu – Sta Maria da Feira
August 1st to 3rd - Festival Internacional Andanças 2007 – S. Pedro do Sul
6th - Festas S. Miguel, Pena
9th - Festas Presa, Mira
10th - Festival Batata Assada N’Areia, Praia da Tocha
16th - II Festival Leitão, Covões
Ian Watson's Pigini Super-Sirius bayan button accordion was stolen from the locked boot of his car in South London on Sunday. The Pigini logo is covered up with tape to reduce its prominence for TV work. Serial number 760 is on the wood just under the grill and on the reed blocks. Any information, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please report to the Accordions Worldwide Stolen Accordions List and in that way, hopefully make it more difficult for thieves to sell stolen accordions.
Finnish accordionist Mika Väyrynen recently performed a concert with his quintet ‘La Camorra’, comprising Mika on bandoneon, Henrik Perello - violin, Ismo Eskelinen - guitar, Kirmo Lintinen – piano, and Tarja Nyberg - double bass. Performing the music of Piazzolla, the concert took place at the ‘Sonkajärvi Soi’ Festival under the artistic directorship of the famous guitarist Ismo Eskelinen.
Sultans Flooded Out - Parky Sails on Solo!, England - UK
Accordionist John Kirkpatrick became a victim of recent severe floods. He wrote: “On the way to Nettlebed Folk Club on June 25th for a gig with The Sultans of Squeeze, my car was overwhelmed by flood water near Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire.
I was one of many, and had to be towed back to a garage, a journey we only just managed even with the extra height of a huge breakdown vehicle. By then it was too late to get to Nettlebed and poor Chris Parkinson, who had had the good sense to go down to the vicinity the day before, ended up having to do the evening solo.
Congratulations to Parky on managing to complete his first solo gig for over ten years! and apologies to my fans.
My car's been written off, I had to hire a car the next day, that got a puncture - two hours delay. Cars, eh?”
Editor: Moral of the story - Accordions are definitely more reliable!!
Fisitalia, well-known company for the production of high standard and excellent service, have presented their ‘made in Italy’ instruments during the well-known Seul-Coex 2007 exposition in South Korea, which took place from June 14th to 16th 2007. 94 companies from 7 different countries were exhibiting, with approximately 28,000 visitors looking for news about musical instruments. Especially appreciated by the public were the accordions ‘made in Italy’ by Fisitalia.
A Bastille Day concert takes place on Saturday July 14th, at 8 pm. The free event takes place at the Universalist National Memorial Church, 1810 16th Street, NW (at S Street), Washington, DC 2009. On the program are French pieces by composers as varied as Ravel and Brel, performed by vocalists, a violinist, and accordionists Rick and Mara.
The Zero Sette Accordion Orchestra, from the Basque region of northern Spain, are in concert on July 14th, 9pm, at ‘La Torre’, Casa de Cultura, Guadarrama, Madrid, organised by the Chorale of Guadarrama. Entrance: 4 euros.
The Maine Celtic Celebration takes place from July 19th to 22nd in Belfast, Maine. This festival of Irish music, song and dance includes informal concerts, dances, displays of Irish dancing and informal music sessions. Performers include bohola – featuring accordionist Jimmy Keane, Ladies of the Lake – featuring button accordionist Maggie Ericson, the Napper Tandies – featuraccordionist Randy Billings, and the Stillson School of Irish Dancing.
Jimmy Keane - 5 times All Ireland Senior Piano Accordion Champion and member of the Irish American band bohola, will be holding a piano accordion workshop. The workshop will take place on Friday July 20th at 10.30am at the Fred Hutchinson Center in Belfast, Maine. The workshop is free, but the organisers are asking for a donation of $10to the Celtic Celebration Fund.
Jean-Marc Marroni is leading an accordion course from July 22nd to 28th at Serre Eyraud, close to Gap in Provence. Members of several accordion schools meet together to work on the interpretation of Baroque, classical and contemporary works, as well as more modern popular music.
The lively and colourful Romanian dance ensemble Doina, with their orchestra, from Bucharest, perform at the Peter Barkworth Theatre, Stockport College on Saturday July 28th, 7pm. Also appearing are the Fosbrooks, local performers of traditional dance, music and song. Both performers’ accompanists include various accordionists.