The 45th International Accordion Competition took place this year from May 2nd – 8th. The competition is held for accordion and bandoneon soloists, and competitors perform a musical range that includes classics, original compositions, virtuosic standard modern and light music. After the conclusion of each event details and regulations are available for the next year’s event.
During the days of competition are also many events and concerts with
stars from the accordion and bandoneon world, including this year:
Rock, Pop & Soul with Coco, Bundespolizeiorchester Berlin, Caledonix,
Blaskapelle Starovarka. Kirchenkonzert with the Sächsisches
Klarinettenensemble of the Robert-Schumann-Konservatoriums Zwickau
and Jörg Bräunig Orgel/Organ, La Revancha del Tango and
Victor Villena, Bandoneonkonzert: Victor Hugo Villena (Argentinia)
Bandoneon, with Anna Villena (Argentina) Piano, the Akkordeonorchester
Klingenthal directect by Karl Lipsius, the Vogtland Philharmonic Greiz/Reichenbach
directed by Stefan Fraas, and the winners of each category of the
45th International Accordion Competition, Klingenthal.
The international Jury included: Jürgen Ganzer, Gudrun Wall, Stefan Fraas, Fritz Dobler, Tobias Morgenstern, Ulf Seifert – Germany; Jeanette Dyremose – Denmark; Anders Grøthe – Norway; Aleksandar Nikolic – Serbia; Tibor Racz – Slovakia; Yu Ping Wang – China; Claudio Jacomucci – Italy; Jacques Mornet – France; Dr. Lech Puchnowski – Poland; Iwan Koval – Czech Republic; Friedrich Lips – Russia; Victor Villena - Argentina.
The winner of the top category solo competition was Vitaliy Kositzkiy
(Ukraine), 2nd Semjon Schmelkov (Russland), 3rd Wolodymyr Oloynyk
Results Download (Acrobat pdf - 420KB).
name ‘Accordionsounds’ - The Sino-German Accordion Ensemble
stands for a music project, sponsored by the Hohner
Company. A reason for the project is the first ‘Deutschland
Promenade’, which is organized for the programme ‘Germany
and China - movement together’, which takes place from May 9th
to 18th in Chongqing, China.
Over this period, five students of the Hohner Conservatory, Trossingen,
and four students of the University of Education in Chongqing give
a few concerts. The leader of the ensemble is Ralf Brendle, a graduate
of the Hohner Conservatory. The Chinese players are Prof. Sun Wie,
Ding Xuelin, Shao Yuebing, Luo Xuan and Gong Lilin. The German
players are Mariya Leminskaya, Stephanie Mast, Matthias Bender and
The project wants to connect different countries in a cultural way.
Furthermore the students have the possibility for further experience
in their musical education. The Hohner
Company finances this project, and also involved are the Goethe-Institute,
Munich. Chongqing is the biggest industrial city in the Sichuan region
with more than 20 million people. The German project participants
will report on their experiences during their trip in China on the
websites of the Hohner
Company and the Hohner Conservatory.
introduce an interesting article on an important musician (who died
some months ago) having contributed considerably to the development
of the accordion internationally.
We are talking about GianFelice Fugazza, a versatile musician who
was a performer, composer, arranger, teacher, publicist, publishing
director, and technical advisor to companies that manufacture musical
His two main passions were the accordion and electronic music.
The article is about all about the activity and the work dedicated
to our instrument, where Fugazza has surely left a meaningful trace
– always to be remembered.
Accordionists of all ages took part in the annual concert of the accordion program at the Hofer Symphoniker Musikschule in Hof, Germany, where the program is under the direction of Günther Zeilinger.
Opening with Mozart's ‘Magic Flute Overture’, the Akkordeon Orchestra Hof began the concert that featured soloists, duos, ensembles and orchestras.
The youngest soloist was 5-year-old Silvan Amann, a participant in the mini accordion program, who delighted the audience with his memorized performance.
The accordion program features several accordion orchestras and ensembles including the Akkordeonorchester Hof (Günther Zeilinger, director), the Youth Accordion Orchestra (Florian Weichert, director), the Hobby Accordion Orchestra (Bernd Rosenberger, director) and the School Accordion Orchestra (Delia Zeilinger, director) and the Youth Quintet (Eva Walter, director).
Featuring a diverse range of repertoire from classics, transcriptions and pop arrangements, orchestra member Adrian Stieglitz's new arrangement of Michael Jackson works titled 'Number Ones' was a tremendous success, complete with a lighting display and power point visual presentation from the orchestra's recent tour to the United States for the 60th CIA Coupe Mondiale.
Adrian and fellow orchestra member Julian Feulner arranged 'You Dance' from the popular Polish accordion group, the Motion Trio for the
Quintet II, which gave its debut performance of the work during the
Part of the Hof Symphony Music School directed by Ingrid Schrader, the accordion program spans all generations and levels of accordion activities, ensuring that not only the top level of accordionists are inspired to strive for musical excellence, but, that even the most junior pre-school students in the Mini-Akkordeon program have the opportunity to embark on a musical adventure.
Pictured is the Accordion Orchestra Hof, who was joined by CIA President Kevin Friedrich for the performance of Fritz Dobler's
Accordions Worldwide has an exclusive interview with Federica Celesti President of the Italian Accordion Culture and co-organisor of the Strumenti&Musica Spring Festival which will be held from the 18-25 May in Spoleto/Italy.
‘Accordions International’ Festival, Blackpool – UK
‘Accordions International’, a new festival held at the Dunes Conference Complex, Pontins Holiday Centre, Blackpool, from May 9th to 13th, proved to be a great success. Organised by Heather Smith, this festival broke new ground by sharing the campus with an organ and keyboard festival, an arrangement that worked well for all concerned.
The evening concerts included many first class performances, with guest artistes Paris-Moscow Duo - Domi Emorine and Roman Jbanov – adding much humour to their virtuoso playing.
Italy’s Giancarlo Caporilli, whose repertoire seems endless, played flawlessly, and supplemented his stage appearances, which included a demonstration of the MusicTech Digital 50 accordion, with several impromptu sessions at the trade show.
The UK guest artistes Stefan Andrusyschyn, Gary Blair, Harry Hussey, Bert Santilly, and Romano Viazzani also turned in excellent performances.
Highlights included Stefan Andrusyschyn’s performance of ‘Winter’, from Vivaldi’s ‘Four Seasons’, and the duets in which he accompanied his wife, operatic soprano Denise Leigh.
Workshops led by Heather Smith, Romano Viazzani, Bert Santilly, Gary Blair, Brian Jenkins and Adrienne Sharpe, and a master class by the Paris-Moscow Duo were all well attended and successful.
The final concert featured sets by the workshop weekend orchestras and bands, a highlight of which was the elementary orchestra’s performance of ‘Moonlight Serenade’.
Directed by Romano Viazzani, who played a Roland FR7 using its clarinet voice to great effect, and also featuring Marj Howard on trumpet, the ensemble really captured the sound and style of Glenn Miller, complete with all musicians standing up, Miller-style, second time through.
People could visit the trade shows of both the accordion and organ/keyboard
festivals, which benefited all the retailers. A visitor to the organ/keyboard
event from Germany, who had travelled by car, was so delighted to
discover the presence of the accordion festival that he treated himself
to a brand new accordion from one of the trade displays.
second Amours d’Accordéons Festival was held from
May 2nd to 4th in Saint Quentin la Poterie, and was again
a great success. This was an occasion for all accordion
enthusiasts, amateurs or professionals, to meet and to discover the
multiple facets of the instrument: musette, jazz, folk, French traditional
and contemporary song... a wide range of music in various places in
Master classes conducted by Jérémie Buirette, François
Heim and Christophe Rohr, and music from artistes such
as François Heim and the Holy Family, Christophe Rohr, the
groups Gattaka, Portelli, les Mauvais Garconsthe (Anthony Doux, Frank
Gétreau), Crabr' can et enfin, and Tony Calvès and Jérémie
Buirette (godfather of the festival). An open air ball closed this
magnificent event for the great joy of the audience.
At various trade shows one could get acquainted with musical instruments and one could try out all different techniques and sounds of the accordion as well as meeting the various professionals (musicians, professors, specialists in the instrument). Jean-Louis Noton presented the range of Cavagnolo accordions in co-operation with Festival Music Dampierre of Avignon. An event rich with emotion, where one could hear constantly and anywhere accordion music from a wide range of players.
Nikolai Ryskov Performs at WW2 Arctic Convoys Commemoration, London – UK
Russian accordionist Nikolai
Ryskov performed at the Russia-Britain Victory Day Celebration
on the Thames, May 9th, to commemorate the Britain-Russia Alliance
in the Arctic Convoys 1941-1945.
The event took place at the warship HMS Belfast in the presence of
and participation from HRH Prince Michael of Kent and His Excellency
the Ambassador of Russia, Yury Fedotov.
Nikolai played some of the most famous Russian war songs of that time such as 'Katyusha’, 'A Dark Night', 'Smuglyanka', 'Lonely Accordion', 'The Glory Day', and many others during the event.
The duo Odeon Conexion - Joao Frade and Guy Giuliano - performed last week, May 2nd, with great success in the Big World Music Festival called ‘Rota dos Bons Ventos’ in the Azores (Portuguese islands), side by side with musicians like Stanley Jordan, Hiromi Uehara and Loyko Trio.
On Friday May 9th in Castelo Branco, the duo performed in a festival called Primavera Musical, and on Saturday May 10th in the Cafe Inlges, one of the most well-known cultural spaces in the south of Portugal.
In July another tour in Portugal and Spain is planned.
Veteran Norwegian accordionist Jan Knutsen has released two CDs, ‘Skip O'hoi’ and ‘Våre Minner’, featuring Scandinavian traditional dance music and some of Jan’s compositions.
Born in 1937, Jan Knutsen has entertained at venues in his part of Norway for over 60 years, including working with several vocalists. He has made recordings, and published four books of his own compositions.
A concert described as ‘le Mariage de Musette et Polka’ – a mixture of French and Polish music - takes place on May 18th, 1pm, at the Teatr KTO, Nord-Pas de Calais. The concert is part of the Wazemmes International Festival.
The annual National Polka Festival in Ennis, Texas, May 23rd to 25th, is the largest Czech heritage festival in the United States. Held annually on Memorial Day Weekend, the festival includes a huge parade through downtown Ennis, a horseshoe tournament, authentic Czech food, and plenty of polka dancing. Dances and concerts take place in various Czech halls throughout Ennis.
Bands scheduled to perform this year include: Brave Combo, Polka Freak Out, Dujka Bros, Czech and Then Some, Fritz Hodde & The Fabulous Six, Jak Se Do, Ennis Czech Boys, Jodie Mikula Orchestra, Red Ravens, Vrazel's Polka Band, and Czechaholics.
The ‘Erste Kölner Akkordeon-Orchester 1935’ will
undertake a concert tour to western Canada from the June 3oth to July
16th. This will be the 5th time that the orchestra goes on tour to
another continent, and the Cologners will give 7 concerts in the cities
to Calgary, Edmonton, Lethbridge, Kimberley, Kelowna and Vancouver.
these are planned two large Gala concerts for UNICEF Canada. The concerts
take place during the Kimberley International Old Time Accordion Championships,
as well as in German-Canadian clubs. In Calgary there
will be a combined concert with Jarosh Accordion Ensemble, the local
UNICEF ambassador Marie Luise Marjan, from Germany, will accompany
the touring party. Marie Luise Marjan, a UNICEF ambassador since 1990,
will be responsible for presentation of the concert program, which
has a ‘European Thoughts’ theme. She first met with the
Kölner Orchester in 1999 in Calgary, during their first Canadian
New York-based Spanish accordionist Victor Prieto is involved in many projects these days. He recently had the pleasure of recording with Yo-Yo Ma, for the Chinese-American cellist’s new CD, which will be out in December.
From May 20th to June 4th, Prieto will be in Barcelona, performing and recording with guitarist Joan Sanmarti. He has interviews scheduled in Spain, with interviews on the national and Galician radio and TV, talking about his music and work in New York. Whilst in Barcelona, Prieto will perform three times:
May 29th – to be announced
30th - Sunset Jazz Club
31st – 18th Festival Internacional de jazz de Granollers
Plans are also well advanced for a European tour in March 2009.
A Roland V Accordion Weekend and Accordion Teaching Week takes place at the St Audries Bay holiday centre, Somerset, from September 6th to 13th. The festival includes numerous concerts and a trade show, and the organisers are John and Jackie Romero. The teachers, demonstrators and performers include Gary Blair, Pearl-Fawcett Adriano, George Syrett, Harry Hussey, Gennaro Fiondella, Karen Street, Eddie Jay, Romano Viazzani, Angie Lukins, Trevani, Rosemary Wright and John Romero.
Peter Piccini - accordionist, composer, arranger,
performer, release 1 new work for accordion available
for purchase online. 'Dreamy Days'. Samples of these
music is available on the site. The music is in eSheet
format, able to be emailed to your computer. Purchase
with credit card.