Welcome to the last week of news for 1997. I would like to thank all those who have generously sent in items from all corners of the world. I would also like to thank both Christine Adams (who collects and collates the news every week) and Tatiana Lanchtchikova for organising everything else to do with it.
To everyone else, I sincerely hope you have enjoyed the news pages as much as we have enjoyed bringing them to you. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a safe New Year. We'll see you again on January 9th 1998! On a personal note I am off to China for about 3 weeks holiday, and hope to catch up on the accordion activity there!
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Contributed by Peter Soave
Peter Soave will be performing in Vladivostok, Far East Russia on December 19th in conjunction with the 1st "Chendryov-Zolotaryov Festival which runs for one week from December 14th to 21st.
This festival and First International Competition has been organised by the Far East Accordion Association. There will competitions for solo accordionists and ensembles which is devoted to Vladislav Zolotariev, a famous accordion composer who committed suicide in 1975 and was one of the first to compose concert music for free bass and show the immense capabilities of the concert accordion.
There will also be a competition for folk string instruments, mixed ensembles and folk orchestras. This competition is devoted to Georgiy Shenderiov, who was a composer of music for accordion and orchestra with various instruments.
For further information contact Alexandr Shpak: Fax +7 4232-412747, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The "Stars of the Lawrence Welk Show" featuring Myron Floren and his orchestra received a big write-up in the Los Angeles Times under the by-line of critic John Roos. The highly complimentary article relates that of the many great memories with the Welk Orchestra, one remains vivid in accordionist Myron Floren's memories. "We played to a crowd of 21,000 people at Madison Square Garden in the late '70s and you could feel the electricity in the air. Lawrence and I were looking out at this crowd from the stage, and he leans over to me and says, 'Isn't it wonderful what could happen in this country to a couple of farmers from the Dakotas?'
The Opera Company of Philadelphia, conducted by Klaus Arp, recently gave four performances of Verdi's "La Traviata" featuring accordionist Joseph Soprani in the La Banda segment of the opera. This part, a parlour scene, is usually performed by a 50-piece orchestra, but the conductor felt that number of musicians was excessive and substituted an ensemble consisting of accordion, piano, piccolo, violin and cello. The audience was very pleased with the results and Arp considered the change quite effective.
Contributed by Arnold Kutzli
The 8th International Accordion Festival will be held from May 21st to 24th, 1988 in Innsbruck, Tyrol, Austria. The festival will include competitions, gala concerts, a city street festival and a huge open air festival as a finale and is being organised by the 'Akkordeon-Orchester-Verband' in conjunction with the 'Deutschen Harmonika Verband', the Austrian 'Harmonika Verband', the 'Eidgenössischen Harmonika, Akkordeon-Musikverband and NOVAM (Netherlands). The winner will receive a valuable accordion, courtesy of Hohner.
This big music and social event aims to attract accordionists from many countries. In 1995 almost 300 orchestras and ensembles from 14 countries took part and this year the program is full of new ideas. There will be competitions in many categories such as adult orchestras (high, senior and main level), youth orchestras (senior, main and elementary level) and ensembles of the highest professional level, highest amateur and senior levels. There will also be special categories for the 'Steirische Harmonika', folk music ensembles, and for solo and duo.
Guest festival performers include the "Hohner-Konservatoriums Trossingen" Orchestra (conducted by Fritz Dobler), Dietmar Walther Orchestra (conducted by Jörg Mehren) Vincent Petrani (France), duo Viviane Arnoux (accordion) and Francois Michaud (violin), and quintet 'Accento' (Austria) which includes Helmut Muchwitsch on accordion.
On the Saturday night, the 'Abend der Begegnung' will be organised in Cupertino with the Innsbruck Tourism Association. On different stages music groups and orchestras will give non-stop entertainment such as the Carlo-Brunner-Band (Switzerland), the orchestra 'Hohnerklang', the accordion orchestra 'Köln' and many more.
The finale and awards will be held on Sunday May 24th. This will include a special highlight - a piece by Hans-Günther Kötz called 'Countdown' which has been especially composed for this event and will be performed by the many thousands of accordionists present at the festival, accompanied by the orchestra 'Hohnerklang'. Music and maxi-CD are being produced right now and are available for a small fee, to orchestras and ensembles that are willing to form the world's biggest accordion orchestra under the baton of conductor Fritz Dobler.
Contributed by Kevin Friedrich
On December 7th, the University of Missouri-Kansas City Accordion Orchestra performed on the American Family Christmas Concert series.
The twenty five member orchestra, under the direction of Joan C. Sommers, performed several pieces including the German Carol Festival Overture, by James Christensen, A Holly Jazzy Christmas, O Holy Night, Silent Night, Rudolf, Santa Claus is Coming to Town and A Soulful Hallelujah.
Some of the works were performed solo while others were in conjunction with hundreds of choir members that make up the various UMKC vocal ensembles.
The 600 seat White Recital Hall on the beautiful UMKC campus was sold out weeks in advance for each of the two shows. Not only does it get everyone into a joyful holiday spirit, it provides excellent exposure to the audiences and other musicians who partake in the show.
Contributed by Milan Tomic and Tania Lukic-Marx
In mid October, the first private Musical Academy in Yugoslavia (university level) with an accordion department was officially opened. The accordion teacher there is Radomir Tomic (leading accordion teacher in Yugoslavia and graduate of the Russian Academy of Music, Moscow). The Academy is open to applicants from all countries and an entrance audition is required. The annual cost is 4.000 DM
Applications should be sent by May 1st 1998 to:
Contributed by Frederic Deschamps
On September 23rd 1970, one of the greats of French comedy passed away - André Raimbourg, also known as Bourvil.
A quarter of a century later, we decided to bring back the memory of this famous comic from Normandy. Zig'Zinzin plays a surprising version of the song "Bourvilienne", with pieces from scores by composers such as Michel Rivgauche, Henrî Contet, Bernard Dimey and Michel Berger thrown in at random. As Bourvil loved the accordion, they have chosen several unpublished works including Le ptit bistro de papa, Ma fête à moi and Mamzelle Bigoudi whose melodies complement the instrument beautifully. Accordionist Frédéric Deschamps uses his talent to underline this musical colour. Zig'Zinzin is touring throughout France in December 1997.
The Jakarta Post, Southeast Asia recently featured an article on Richard Galliano's 13-city, eight-country tour of Southeast Asia that has already taken him to Malaysia, Brunei, Bandung, Yogyakarta and Surabaya. The performances were co-ordinated by the region's network of French cultural centres.
Jakarta's jazz music lovers have developed a craving following a three-day JakJazz festival with Galliano performing his own brand of jazz: new musette. "New musette is jazz with historical Parisian content," Galliano said last year on the release of his last album, New York Tango. "Fusion means you can go into blues, the tango, musette but to be authentic, it's always important to keep whatever sticks to your own skin."
For his performance at Neo Fabrice, Galliano was accompanied by Manu Roche on drums and Furio di Castri on bass.
Contributed by Wu Jie
From December 20th to 25th, the 2nd Middle School Students' Festival will be held in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China.
At this festival, there will be a variety of cultural and art activities including a musical instrument competition. Over 200 middle school accordion students, are going to participate in the competition including an accordion orchestra comprising of 15 students from the Hongzhou Art School. Their average age is 14 years old and they will play two Chinese pieces - Speeding Train and When I Play My Favourite Pipa.
"We will be winners, because we are the best accordion players in our school," said Miss Wang Hong, a confident thirteen year old girl and one of the members of the accordion orchestra.
A large catalogue of accordion music from leading publishers as well as the extensive Deffner library is being offered by Ernest Deffner Publications, P.O.Box 608, Mineola, NY 11501 USA. The catalogue may be requested by mail, phone. or e-mail: email@example.com and orders placed during January, 1998 and mentioning Accordions Worldwide will receive a special discount.
United Kingdom newspaper the "Mirror" recently included an article on Padraig Morgan who has won lotto. Padraig is a music fanatic from Castlerea, Roscommon and plans to go straight out and buy himself an accordion. "I can't believe my luck," he said. "I'm going to buy an accordion and treat my mother to a new house." His mammoth UK£530,897 was a half share of the lotto prize pool.
Contributed by Wu Jie
"Qian-Jiang" Song & Dance Hall is one of the biggest song & dance halls in Qianjiang, Hubei province, China. On Christmas Eve, a big evening party will be held in the hall to celebrate Christmas Day.
At the party, Ms Ye Dan (accordion teacher), and seven of her accordion students will perform in a band accompanied by two electronic organs. They will play popular music and Christmas music. It is estimated that there will be over 6,000 people watching their performance.
The United Kingdom Financial Times featured an article recently on the advantages of providing music for shoppers. According to a study, French accordion tunes will send bottles of Beaujolais swaying out of the door. Adrian North of Leicester University's music psychology group (which conducted the survey) said, "By investigating the purchasing of German and French wines, we have found that musical 'fit' has a profound effect on product choice." On alternate days over a two-week period, shoppers heard French accordion and German bierkeller music. When the French music was playing, shoppers bought 40 bottles of French and just eight of German wine. When German music was playing, they bought 12 bottles of French and 22 of German wine.
Contributed by Christine Adams
Grant "Yogi" Martin has recently been strolling through Auckland's Milford Shopping Centre entertaining the Christmas shoppers with carols and popular accordion pieces. A few hours later, he can be seen at Auckland's famous fun park "Rainbow's End" where he enjoyed entertaining tourists and holiday makers.
Yogi also recently performed at Le Grand Hotel in Hamilton (2½ hours south of Auckland) to a large crowd before returning to entertain Auckland's Christmas shoppers once more.
Contributed by Andrea Rautenberg
The national daily newspaper "Die Welt" included a huge article on page 3 on Monday, December 15th by Peter Schmalz, about the home of the Bandoneon. He wrote: Carlsfeld, a little village in the Erzgebirge (Ore Mountains). Here the brothers Carl Moritz and Wilhelm Rolando Zimmerman started the manufacture of bellows around the middle of the century. They improved the claviature, expanded the tonal scale and called the new instruments Concertinas. The instruments were sold to the merchant Band from Krefeld, who resold them under his name - the Bandoneon was born.
In the 17th Century bohemian instrument manufacturers moved into the region, that was soon called "Musikwinkel" (Music Nooc). Here the world centre of the manufacture of musical instruments developed. More than 3 Million mouth organs were produced in 1860, with most of them being sold abroad. When the Bandoneon finally came to Buenos Aires and Montevideo with the seamen, it had found its true designation: the Tango. The popularity of the Tango caused a boom for the Erzgebirge, as 9 out of 10 Bandoneons from Carlsfeld were sold abroad.
The Zimmerman Brothers then sold their business to the Arnold Brothers, whose name in South America is still a sign of outstanding quality. "An Arnold-Bandoneon is like a Rolls-Royce", says Professor Nestor Vaz, one of the most popular bandoneon players in Uruguay. His instrument was build in Carlsfeld in 1932, his fathers instrument came 1920 from Carlsfeld to Montevideo. "They are still unequalled. It is a pity that they are not built any more." The manufacture was closed in 1964, in times of the GDR (German Democratic Republic).
Now the people from Carlsfeld try to revive the tradition of the bandoneon manufacture. The "1. Tango & Bandoneon Festival" was organised, and soon a little Tango-Museum will open its doors. Quite difficult will be the revival of the old craftsman's skills, because there are no documents about it, the knowledge was verbally given from master to journeyman. Two pensioners, who once worked in the Arnold Manufacture, have now reconstructed two bandoneons - and this hopefully is the beginning of the revival of the old manufacturing tradition.
Contributed by Martin Frey
An accordion festival for soloists and duos will be held on Saturday, June 27th 1998, in Todtmoos, Germany. Organisers of the festival are the Akkordeon-Orchester Todtmoos and the Deutsche Harmonika-Verband Bezirk Dreiländerecke. The competition will be held in different age groups and for the first time a "Seniors" section (40+ years) will be included. The youngest group are "Pfiffikusgruppen" (7 years and older). Guest performers from Switzerland and France are welcome, but can not take part in the competition. The ceremonial awarding of prizes and trophies will be held at the Wehratalhalle on the same evening.
For further information please contact: Thomas Lüthy (president of the Akkordeon-Orchester Todtmoos), Schwarzenbachstr.1, D-79862 Todtmoos. Phone: +49 7674 909120.
Contributed by Danielle Pauly
Danielle Pauly is preparing to record her new CD, which should be available from the beginning of 1998. A professional accordionist since 1981, Danielle Pauly likes to present an elegant image of the accordion and French culture, while managing to adapt her programme to today's public. She has travelled through 23 countries performing, including Germany, Switzerland, Spain, Hungary, Russia, Sweden, Great Britain, Norway, Denmark, Japan, India, Cambodia, China, Thailand and Korea.
Some comments on her performances:
"Nobody in Phnom Penh knew that it was possible to coax such diversity and perfection of sound from an instrument we thought we knew." (Gildas Le Lidec, French Ambassador to Cambodia)
"Her popularity is due to the high quality and diversity of her programme, together with her stage presence and warmth of communication with her audiences." (Malcolm N Gee, The Accordion News, GB)
"Danielle Pauly proves her superiority in the music world " (René Lachèze, director of Accordéons de France Maugein)
For further information contact: Danielle Pauly Ph: + 33 1 64049114 Fax: + 33 1 40404426 or email: Christine-et-Danielle.PAULY@wanado.fr
Subject: Accordion type?
Please tell me something about my accordion. I have had it since the early 50's. It was brand new at that time. It says on the back Made in Italy. Front it says Rollina. 2 bass switches and 5 treble switches. Gray pearlized.
I am interested in selling it but do not see where that name appears anywhere in your ads, so perhaps Rollina is the model, if so, who is the manufacturer.
I have never heard of such an accordion make. There have been a number of Italian accordion manufacturers in the past who are not making accordions any longer, and it appears as though this could possibly be one of them.
This does not mean that the value of such an accordion is higher or lower than another. Without seeing the accordion it is impossible for me to value it. I suggest you take it to your nearest accordion distributor or retailer, who will be able to appraise it in person so much easier.
For a list of these, please follow this link: