Accordions Worldwide "The Squeeze"
14th May 1999
- Weekly news from around the world-
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Professor Walter Maurer, Secretary General of the Confederation Internationale des Accordeonistes (CIA) has announced that the Coupe Mondiale solo competitions will not be held in Yugoslavia this year due to the war situation.

We sympathize with the Yugoslav organiser Milan Tomic and his sponsoring associations and hope that in a future year, the event will be held in Yugoslavia. Most of all, we sympathize for those accordionists in the region suffering the horrors of war.

For 1999, the Coupe Mondiale will be held in Trossingen, Germany, the exact date yet to be confirmed. Professor Maurer hopes to announce the exact dates in a few days.

Wayne Knights Webmaster

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Väyrynen at Sell Out Concert - Japan

Finnish accordionist Mika Väyrynen is currently touring Japan until May 20th. He performed on May 14th in the Musashino Hall in Tokyo. This concert has been sold out since January this year. Other performances include the Studio Runde in Nagoya on the 16th and the Phoenix Hall in Osaka on the 18th. These venues are famous and respected halls where many famous musicians have performed.


TV Presentation Masterclass - France

On April 18th a rather unusual masterclass took place in the Conservatory of the Paris 9 University, entitled "TV Presentation". Didier Ouvrard co-ordinated the accordion part of the popular French light music show "La Chance Aux Chansons", hosted by Pascal Sevran. During this masterclass, Didier revealed the tricks of the trade such as how to dress, move, smile, choice of repertoire etc.

He also managed to do some "headhunting"! From the young accordionists who took part, Didier chose five young musicians to participate in an upcoming episode of this show, which has very high viewer numbers in France and International TV. Due to the success of this wonderful experience which was organized by Frédéric Deschamps, another meeting will be scheduled in the near future.


International Accordion Show - Hungary

Contributed by Balazs Benko

On May 15th an International Accordion Show will be held at 5pm at the IBS Buda Stage in Budapest. Performers include the "Budapest Accordion Trio" (Zoltan Orosz, Gabor Weber and Laszlo Kreisz), Gabor Eredics (Hungary), Laszlo Halasz (Hungary), Peter Kovacs (Hungary), Anna Nagy (Hungary), Zoltan Orosz (Hungary), Maritta and Ari-Matti Saira (Finland), Erno Weszely (Hungary) and David Yengibarjan (Armenia).

The program will include many musical styles such as klezmer, jazz, Southslavian folk, French musette, Hungarian folk, swing, serious and modern music as well as works by Piazzolla, Gershwin, Cole Porter, Duke Ellington, Mozart and Rimsky-Korsakov. The show finale will include eleven accordionists performing "Hungarian Fantasy" by Franz Liszt.

For further information email:


Jazz Festival Attracts Thousands - USA

Contributed by Reuters News Service

The New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, held from April 23rd to May 2nd attracted over 177,000 people at the Fair Grounds racetrack opening celebrations and thousands more at local concerts and clubs. Famous stars such as Fats Domino, Santana, Willie Nelson, Ray Charles and other Hollywood celebrities performed at the event, which included a variety of musical styles.

Accordionist Buckwheat Zydeco had thousands of people on their feet dancing to his high-powered music. C.J. Chenier (son of Clifton Chenier) kept the tradition alive fronting a "smoking" band that included five percussionists. "Geno Delafose and French Rockin' Boogie" wielded his piano accordion like a matchbook as he flew through a high-powered mix of zydeco and adapted R&B tunes. Arthur Conley's "Sweet Soul Music" became a zydeco anthem for Delafose, powered by four washboard players.

One of the weekend's most extraordinary performances came from the south Louisiana swamp-pop group "Lil' Band of Gold" (including accordionist Steve Riley) who have had many local chart hits. Lil' Band of Gold delivered a "red-hot" set of vintage rock and R&B.


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Premiere of New Work - Spain

Contributed by Raquel Ruiz

A new Spanish piece was premiered by Angel Luis Castaño last week in the new Conservatory of Langreo, Asturias, Spain. After a successful Piazzolla concert in February with the Ensemble Ciudad de Segovia, Castaño was invited back to perform a solo concert in the conservatory.

His program included works by Ligeti, Zolotarew, Lecuona and Rossini as well as the new piece "5 piezas para el Ritual de difuntos" by Josep Soler (Spain).


"Burach" at Scruffy Murphy's - Norway

Scottish accordionist Sandy Brechin will tour Norway from May 16th to 22nd with his group "Burach", performing at "Scruffy Murphy's" in Bergen on the 16th and 17th. They will also perform at the Stord Hotel, Stord; Diks'len, Haugesund and the Bommeloy Hotel, Bomlo. The group includes Alison Cherry (vocals, whistles and percussion), Doug Anderson (guitar and vocals), Sandy Brechin (accordion and vocals), Eoghain Anderson (drums), Roy Waterson (bass guitar and vocals) and Gregor Borland (violin, mandolin, bass and vocals).

"Burach" recently played at the 25th Girvan Folk Festival in Scotland and have appeared on numerous TV and radio shows in the UK and overseas.

For further information email:


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Pitocco Plays with Capossela - Italy

Contributed by Holda Paoletti-Kampl

On April 9th Massimiliano Pitocco played the bandoneon in a show featuring well-known singer and songwriter Vinicio Capossela at the Barfly in Ancona. During this show, entitled "Reading", Capossela delivered a series of "poems, fragments, derailments and grudges". Music played an important part in the show. An entire section was devoted to the presentation of pieces by Aníbal Troilo (Argentinean bandoneon player and composer whose orchestra included a young Astor Piazzolla) performed by Pitocco and featuring lyrics especially written by Capossela.

The show was part of a series of concerts organized and directed by Giovanni Seneca which included performances by Stefano Benni with the Paolo Damiani Quartet, the Chimenti-Maraghini Duo and "Quintorigo" who also played at this year's Sanremo Festival.


Sharov to make London Appearance - UK

Contributed by Kevin Friedrich

Oleg Sharov, head of accordion studies at the Rimsky-Korsakov Conservatory of Music in St. Petersburg, Russia will perform at St. John's Church, W Ealing, London, on Monday May 17 at 7.45pm. This rare appearance in the United Kingdom will feature "Music From Russia". For tickets and further information, please phone David Rutter: + 44 181 579-3500


Benefit Concert - Japan

Contributed by Toru Katou

On May 22nd the annual "Noboru Emori's Accordion Class Presentation" will be held at the Kagaku-Gijutsu Hall, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo at 4pm. For further information phone Mr Emori: + 81 3-3930-5568

The following day an annual benefit concert "Accordion and Music in Hiroshima" will be held at the Hiroshima City East Ward Culture Center Hall, Higashi-Ward, Hiroshima at 1.30pm. This is one of the biggest accordion events in the Chugoku-Shikoku-Area. Admission is free with voluntary contributions to the relief fund of Hiroshima City accepted. Accordion bands including "Hiroshima Tango Ensemble", "Hideo Katahara" and "Ensemble Musette" will perform with singers and dancers.

For further information phone Mr Katahara (Accordion Masters Association): + 81 82-842-0285


"Celebrity Interviews"

Questions for the Celebrity Interview with Tom Collins, Montana, USA must be sent to Moderator Wallace Liggett by May 19th. The interview will be published on May 25th. The Celebrity Interview with Jérôme Richard will be published on May 22nd.


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Double Winners - New Zealand

Contributed by Christine Adams

The 45th Annual North Shore Performing Arts Competitions were held on May 9th in Auckland. The day included a variety of soloists plus a festival performance by the North Shore Accordion Orchestra conducted by Heather Masefield and Lionel Reekie. Three successful competitors were each double winners - Jessica Chen (Under 10 years, Music of the Masters and Own Selection), Alex Selman (Under 12 years, Music of the Masters and Folk and Entertainment music) and Paula Harris (16 years and over, Music of the Masters and Own Selection). Paula is the current New Zealand Solo Champion.


New Accordion Course - China

Contributed by Li Cong

The China Central Music Academy, Beijing is now offering an accordion course for the first time. In China, most Music Academies currently offer accordion courses including the Tianjing, Sichuan, Shengyang, Sian and Wuhan Music Academies. In the past, some great accordionists have graduated from these academies including artists and teachers.

Beijing accordionists have worked for some time to assist and encourage the China Central Music Academy to offer these courses, as the academy is held in high regard. Ten new accordion students will be admitted for the 3 year study program starting in September.


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"Poozies" Tour Great Britain

Contributed by Jan Lucas

UK group the "Poozies" (with accordionist Karen Tweed) will tour Great Britain from June 5th to 19th. They will play at the "Clitheroe Great Days of Folk" festival on June 5th, the Beverley Folk Festival on the 18th and at the Middlewich Folk and Boat Festival on the 19th.

Their latest CD "Come Raise Your Head" includes "The Widow", "Mr Grapes" and "Lonesome Road".

For further information email:


Accordion Beatles in "Fast Forward" - Canada

Contributed by Domenic "the Accordion Beatles guy" Amatucci

Accordion Beatles was featured in the Toronto Star daily newspaper "Fast Forward" section on May 6th. The article titled "Mama's got a Squeezebox" included details of Domenic's Toronto subway performances of Beatles' music with John Lennon's "Imagine" proving one of the most popular tunes.

Domenic has also been contacted by CBC Radio to appear on their "Metro Morning" show during the week of May 10th to 14th.


Accordion and the Theatre - Italy

Contributed by Paolo Picchio

Accordionist Monica D'Emidio recently took part (as the only musician on stage) in a play by Dacia Maraini which was an adaptation of the well-known film "Nella città l'inferno" (Hell in the City). Set in a women's prison in 1958, the play brings on stage a mixture of strong and well-defined characters of different ethnic backgrounds and ages, who are forced to live together and go through various stages of joy, pain, hate, love and friendship all taken to the extreme. .

Fourteen actresses including well-known TV personalities such as Simona Cavallari and Mariangela D'Abbraccio, four actors, two cells, a corridor and an accordion contribute to bring to life and emphasize the most difficult moments of life in a women's prison. Composer, G. Zumpano wrote the music for the accordion after having studied its technical, expressive and dynamic capabilities and was amazed at its harmonic and tonal richness. These characteristics contributed to create intense emotions and evocative moods.

The show travelled extensively and was staged during Borgo Verezzi and Taormina Festivals, as well as in Palermo and Milan. This kind of experience gives the accordion a chance to be promoted in other artistic circles, creating new professional opportunities for accordionists.


Rita Davidson Performs Daverne Chamber work - USA

Contributed by Kevin Friedrich

On May 16th at 3 pm accordionist Rita Weinbuch Davidson will perform "Waltz for Accordion and Strings" by Gary Daverne with the NJIO (New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra) at Cranford High School, Cranford, New Jersey.

Rita, a former student of Eugene Ettore, has won numerous first place Virtuoso awards in both National and Accordion Teachers Association of New Jersey (of which she now serves as a Board member) competitions. A teacher in the West Orange Public School system for 25 years, Rita uses the accordion every day in the teaching of her classes. The students are very responsive to the instrument and it has also been most helpful in years when a music room was not available.

An honors graduate of the University of Connecticut with a degree in music education, Rita also plays the piano and viola, and has recorded many virtuoso solo works by Eugene Ettore.

Gary Daverne is well known in television, radio, and the recording industry as a composer, arranger, and musical conductor. He is New Zealand's most prolific writer of music for the accordion. As a record producer he has one Platinum and two Gold records to his credit, and has held the position of Musical Director of the Auckland Symphony Orchestra since its foundation in 1975.

For further information on the concert or available recordings, please email:


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Accordion and Organ Duo - France

Accordionist Bruno Maurice will give a duo concert on June 13th at 3 pm, with François-Henri Houbart, who holds the post of organist in the Eglise de la Madeleine Church in Paris. The accordion and organ duo impressed the Vendôme audience last November with their originality. Their program includes works by Bach, Boëlmann, Vivaldi, Franck and Albeniz.

Bruno has just returned to Paris after a concert accompanying French army choirs on May 8th.


Leyland Club on TV - UK

Contributed by David Batty

On May 12th the BBC filmed the Leyland Accordion Club concert for their "Webwise" National television series. The Webwise campaign is aimed to get the country on the Internet. The filming included their presenter being "wooed" by an accordionist and information on Walter Perrie's concert which was broadcast on the Leyland Club website.

When the program goes to air, they will announce details of the Leyland Club and their website address. They will also have a listing on the BBC website. The program is expected to be shown within the next two weeks on BBC 2.


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DHV Club Competition - Germany

Contributed by Uli Ebner

An accordion competition was organised recently to celebrate the Rheinfelden Accordion Orchestra birthday in the DHV area where Germany, France and Switzerland meet. Over 300 accordionists aged between 6 and 76 years participated in the event. A cheerful atmosphere was present at this well organised meeting.

The jury decided that the "Youth Ensemble" from Grenzach Whylen (conducted by Tanja Rauschenberg) was the winner. The chairman of the DHV in this area, Dietmar Fink, honored participating clubs with certificates and cups.


Accordion Misnaming "Accordéon" on the Radio! - Italy

Contributed by Paolo Picchio

The April episode of the show "Radio 3 Suite" featured the "Accordéon". Unfortunately, the opportunity to treat accordionists as normal people was missed by singer and songwriter Gianluigi Cavaliere, author of the well-known song "Bramo ma non t'amo". While introducing the musicians who had taken part in the recording of the song, he came up with "Fabio Rossato: accordéon World Champion". The disappointment was partly mitigated by the fact that the show's excellent host replied by saying "you can tell he is really very good".

A double humiliation (for the Italian audience) was the use of the French word "accordéon" instead of the Italian word "fisarmonica". Is this an indicator of the low status of the word fisarmonica and of the instrument by the public of Italy? During a radio presentation of the piece "Outis" by Luciano Berio from a recent performance at the Scala theatre Claudio Jacomucci was listed as a "bayan" player!


ATG Festival "Welk-Comes" you to Branson! - USA

Contributed by Kevin Friedrich

On July 18th, at 2pm the ATG will feature their Festival Orchestra plus numerous other "accordion delights" on stage at the Welk Theatre during an "All Accordion" grand finale concert honoring Myron Floren. The ATG Festival, to be held from July 16th to 18th at the Lodge of the Ozarks Resort and Convention Center in Branson, Missouri will feature competitions, workshops, an Accordion Cabaret as well as the popular Festival Orchestra, and is open to all interested accordionists.

To receive the 'Polka Medley' music for the Festival Orchestra or request further information, please email ATG President Amy Jo Sawyer at:

Updates will be posted on the ATG web site. Interested people are all invited to come and help make this the biggest Festival Orchestra yet to honor ATG member, Myron Floren.


Six year Old Accordionists - Germany

Contributed by Günther Zeilinger

On May 9th the accordionists from the "Hofer Symphoniker" Music school gave their annual concert in front of a full house in the "Freiheitshalle" in Hof. Many accordion students participated in the event, from beginners (aged 6 years) to experienced concert soloists. Beginner ensembles to accordion orchestras also performed. The highlight of the event was the performance by the Accordion Orchestra Hof, who played the overture from "Die Fledermaus", Werziade No. 4 and Starlight Express.

The program also included a performance by the accordion quintet "Concertino" from Lithuania who captured the audience's hearts with their music. The concert was a delightful experience and a great success.


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"Città Di Anagni" Advanced Course - Italy

Contributed by Holda Paoletti-Kampl

The 3rd Advanced Accordion Course of Musical Interpretation "Città Di Anagni" will be held from June 28th to July 3rd at the Convitto Nazionale "Regina Margherita" in Anagni, near Frosinone. The event, organised by the French Accordion School directed by Jacques Mornet and the A.P.M. Music Centre directed by Gianluca Pica is based on the most up-to-date developments in accordion pedagogy. Tutors include Franck Angelis, Nathalie Boucheix, Jacques Mornet and Gianluca Pica.

The course is open to accordionists of all levels and will cover a wide range of styles such as variety, jazz, classical and contemporary. There will be two sections for "Practising" and "Listening" participants. Course materials will be discussed in three languages, Italian, French and English. Participants will receive a certificate of attendance. Closing date for enrolments is June 12th, 1999

For further information email:

Accordion Article

This week's article is “Review of: Give Yourself A Raise” by Jean Oelrich. The article was submitted by Kevin Friedrich, Accordion Pedagogy Class, University of Missouri of Kansas City, Conservatory of Music.


Antique Accordion Information

Bruce Thomas would like to determine the type and relative rarity of his "Maggimi" 120 bass accordion. It has a Mother of Pearl finish.

If you can help please email:


New Sites updated site for French accordionist Jérôme Richard.



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