Accordions Worldwide "The Squeeze"
24th December 1999
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The staff of Accordions Worldwide would like to wish our readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. We hope you have enjoyed the news over the last three years. We plan to bring you a great variety of new and exciting items in the year 2000. Our first news for next year is on January 14th, so if you have a New Year concert or performance please send us details and a photo if possible.

I would like to thank the News Manager Christine Adams who does a great job compiling and editing the news each week, and also our translators Maria Lukanow (German), Lucja Kot (French), Giovanni Tiso (Italian), Luis Perez-Albela (Spanish), Vitaly Ushakov (Russian) and Li Cong (Chinese).

Merry Christmas!
Wayne Knights Webmaster

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New Year Concert - France

French accordionist Jean-Robert Chappelet and his band (accordion, guitar, keyboard, vocals and saxophone) will play at a New Year event in Courchevel. Their program will include jazz pieces to begin the evening's entertainment, followed by dance music. Jean-Robert and his wife Carole Montmayeur (accordion and piano) will also perform "Bossa Club", "Valse for Cyndie" and "La Bavaroise" among others. For further information email:

Sell-out Concert - Brazil

Contributed by Claudio Valerio

Brazilian accordionists gathered at the "Culture House" in Ilha Solteira (Sing Island), in the State of São Paulo (San Paul) recently for their 3rd annual concert. A capacity crowd of over 600 people enjoyed performances by Vera Regina Weissmann, Edinho Lima, Carlos Galizzia, Egno Veschi and Lauro Valerio (President of the Brazilian Accordionist's Association). Their program included a variety of musical styles from popular and regional music to classical pieces.

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10th International Moscow "Bayan and Bayanists" Festival - Russia

Contributed by Dr Herbert Scheibenreif Manager of Friedrich Lips Productions

The 10th International "Bayan and Bayanists" Festival was held in Moscow from December 15th to 19th. The first half of the opening concert was dedicated to two premier performances of works by Aleksandr Cholminov: Festival overture and Symphony for Bayan. Friedrich Lips performed with the Gnessin's Russian Academy of Music Symphony Orchestra directed by T. Munbaev. The second half was dedicated to Russian prizewinners of international competitions this year. I. Puriz, S. Osokin, A. Gainullin and P. Dranga, performed Tchaikovsky's Orchestra Suite No 2 for Symphony Orchestra and 4 accordions.

The second evening was an 80th birthday celebration for N. Risol (Professor in Kiev and Ukraine's People's Artist). Performers included E. Gabnys and A. Savkov (accordion duo from Lithuania), S. Grinchenko and the Philharmonic Quartet of Ukraine.

On December 17th, Professor Aleksandr Skljarov (Voronesh) celebrated his 50th anniversary and 30 years of performing. The following two days concerts were given by Y. Medjanik and Mika Väyrynen (Finland) and a Conference about the Art of Folk Instruments in the beginning of the 21st century was held.

The final concert was a "Slav evening" which included performances by Bayan Duo E. Derbenko and A. Kotchergin, G. Kalmikov (harmonica), L. Pavkovitch, Slav-Duet S. Fjodorov (domra) and B. Iovanovitch (accordion) and the Russian Folk Instruments Orchestra (directed by B. Voron).

Bulgarian Folklore Masterclass - Bulgaria

Contributed by Peter Stanchev, Accordion Magic

On December 4th and 5th a Bulgarian Folklore master class was held by Neno Koichev in the High Music School, Plovdiv. A large number of accordionists attended the event, organized by Zdravka Andreeva, accordion teacher at the school. Neno Koichev spoke about the Coupe Mondiale `99 (Trossingen), where he was a member of jury, gave demonstrations on the MIDI accordion and presented specific musical techniques regarding authentic Bulgarian folklore.

The next workshop will be held on January 21st and 22nd in the northern Bulgarian town of Pleven. For further details email:

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Christmas Mass Concert - Italy

Accordionist Vladimir Zubitsky will play at a Christmas Mass concert on December 24th in the "Santa Maria della Grazia" Church (one of the largest churches in Pesaro) for over 1,000 people.

Vladimir will perform Christmas songs as well as pieces with a string quartet such as "Valzer lirico" and "Rossiniana". He will also perform the premiere of "Music for the end of the Millennium" which includes pieces from his repertoire dedicated to the accordion, flute, cello and piano. For further concert details email:

Pancake Christmas Concert - Japan

Contributed by Toru Katou

On December 24th, accordionist Yuichi Ohtsuka will perform with his band "Pancake" at "Otoya Kintoki", Nishi-Ogikubo, Tokyo. The following day (Christmas Day) Yuichi will perform a concert at the "Garally Zouei", Setagaya Ward, Tokyo. For further information email:

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Burach at Edinburgh Hogmanay - Scotland

"Burach" (featuring accordionist Sandy Brechin) will perform at an open-air concert on December 31st as part of "Edinburgh's Hogmanay '99", which will take place on the Celtic Stage, Parliament Square, Edinburgh. Several thousand people are expected to attend the "Hogmanay Street Party".

Burach will play tracks off their forthcoming album (to be released in Spring 2000). For details email:

Tibetan Musician Performs with Accordionist - USA

Sherap Wangmo & Dee LangleyInternational vocalist and musician Sherap Wangmo, performed with accordionist Dee Langley and the Ethnic Dance Theatre for their production, "The Fabled Silk Road" in Minneapolis recently. Ms. Wangmo is a member of the prestigious Tibetan Institute for the Performing Arts, a leading actress in the film, "Kundun" and a prominent musician in the film, "Seven Years in Tibet". The audience was captivated as Wangmo and Langley performed "A Pilgrimage in Tibet".

Dee Langley recently completed a run of the musical, "She Loves Me" based on Hungarian playwright Miklos Laszlo's 1937 comedy, "Parfumerie" with the North Star Opera Company. The story also was modernized for the movie "You've Got Mail!" Dee's performance was met with excitement by cast, crew, media, and the audience.

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International Winter Seminar - France

A winter seminar and workshop began in Saint-Etienne, France on December 18th with tutors Frédéric Deschamps and Eric Pisani. This international event includes students from Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Japan and England, who will study new ways of solving technical problems related to the compression of the air column, different bellows techniques (bellow shake, retriplet, 3, 4, and 5-ricochet, etc.) and the concept of Baroque and Classical styles, as well as contemporary, jazz, musette, light music etc. Twenty five students each week (until December 30th) will practice for 6 to 12 hours each day.

The principal goals of workshop participants include preparation for national and international competitions and teachers wanting to discover the latest pedagogical methods and new repertoire, performed by winners of the latest international competitions such as Jérôme Richard, Frédéric Baldo, Xavier Rollet, Arnaud Guimard, Vincent Carenzi, Greg Frenard and Benoit Chabod.

Russian Accordionist Performs in American Style Restaurant - Denmark

Vladimir UshakovDuring his current tour of Denmark, Russian accordionist Vladimir Ushakov (soloist with the St. Petersburg Musette Ensemble) has been taking part in Christmas musical events. A popular performance venue is "Jack's Restaurant" in Saeby (North Denmark). The restaurant was originally used as a stables in 1880, followed by an "eggwrappery", general storage and wire manufacturing.

Now a newly refurbished and attractive restaurant with an American image has became a popular place for visitors from all over Denmark. Vladimir Ushakov has performed solo pieces as well as with local group "Sweet Dreams" (playing music from country to blues and cajun). On December 17th Vladimir played at a "Saeby-by-night" celebration to a full house. This event was so popular that people were queuing outside the restaurant hoping to gain entry!

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"The Best is Yet To Come" - England

Contributed by John Wild, International Concertina Association

A group of teenage performers known as "The Pack" (including several concertina players) will perform at the Calver Village Hall, Calver, Derbyshire at an event called "The Best is Yet To Come" on December 30th. The group includes several members of the International Concertina Association who recently won the BBC Radio 2 young musician award. For further information email Dave Ball:

"A Night in Italy" - USA

Accordionist Mario Tacca and Mary Mancini have just finished a ten show tour in Florida, performing in Fort Lauderdale, BocaRaton, Kings Point, Deerfield Beach and West Palm Beach. Their final concert was "A Night in Italy" show at the North Miami Beach Performing Arts Center to an audience of 2500.

From December 6th to 15th the duo performed their "Christmas Show" in Hunts Landing, Matamoras, Pennsylvania to daily audiences of over 450. Their program included "Alleluia", "O Holy Night", "Sleigh Ride", "Fisa di Tivo" combined with Jingle Bells and Mario's arrangement of "How Great Thou Art".

On New Years' Eve they will perform at the Magnanini Winery in Walkill, New York. For details email:

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Traditional Christmas Concert - Germany

The Hof Accordion QuintetContributed by Günther Zeilinger

Accordion classes from the Hof Symphonic Orchestra Music School held their traditional Christmas concert recently in Rehau, Hof. Over 70 accordionists in both orchestras played a varied program to a capacity crowd, including "Ave Maria" and Air from Bach as well as original music like Fritz Dobler's Werziade No 4. Performances were also given by The Hof Quintet playing "Asturias" (Isaac Albeniz) and Stefanie Jeremias who played a Domenico Scarlatti Sonata.

"Millennium Tango" Festival - Italy

"Tango e altre storie"Popular quartet "Tango e altre storie" (including accordionist Beppe Turletti) will perform on December 27th at "Avotango" for the opening of a "Millennium Tango" Festival in Turin from December 27th to 31st. Their repertoire will include tangos of Turkish, Greek and Slavonic origin. As part of the festival they will also hold a concert on December 30th in the atrium of the Porta Nuova train station, Turin. The festival will be hosted by many venues in Turin in which the tango is played and danced. For further details email:

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Academy of Music and Dance - Bulgaria

Contributed by Peter Stanchev, Accordion Magic

On December 1st at the Academy of Music and Dance Art (AMDA) in Plovdiv, Georgi Mitev presented "Theoretical and Methodical principles" to a large audience. Georgi Mitev teaches the accordion in AMDA and is also the Artistic Director of the "Chamber Accordion Ensembles". This presentation was dedicated to transcriptions for the accordion and contains theory, notes and an audio cassette.

The method is illustrated by its application in Bach's cycle "Eight Little Preludes and Fugues" performed by Mitev. It was a pleasant surprise that this attracted over 100 accordionists, who took part in the lively discussion. Mitev will publish the scientific study in English if there is enough interest. For further details email:

Wardlaw Scottish Dance Band Concert - Scotland

The Wardlaw Scottish Dance BandThe Wardlaw Scottish Dance Band (including accordionists Stuart and Kenny Thomson) will play at a Scottish Dance fundraising event for the Mental Health Foundation on December 30th December in Troon, Ayrshire, SW Scotland. Over 150 people are expected to attend including many who fly up from London, England especially for this dance.

The following night, the group will play at a private "Hogmanay" (New Year's Eve) party which will take the form of a traditional Scottish Ceilidh. Guests also include local piper Drew Dalgleish, Linton McMillan (compere and vocalist), Elidh McMillan (Champion Highland Dancer) and violinists Ellis and Grant Thomson.

For further information email:

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Memorial Concert Evening - Russia

On December 10th a memorial concert was held in Voronezh, devoted to Alexander Timoshenko, composer and teacher who passed away six months ago. The concert was opened by Viacheslav Semionov followed by the "Lipetsk Bayan Trio" and Timoshenko's students. Other performers included E. Kochetov, Y. Prokhorov and A. Roldugin. The concert finished with the premiere performance of Timoshenko's last accordion composition by Alexander Sklyarov.

Christmas Entertaining - Sweden

Sune OlssonSwedish accordionist Sune Olsson has been entertaining regularly at nursing homes in Sweden, with a last concert on December 16th. His repertoire included popular Christmas melodies with the audience singing along. Sune was accompanied by two guitars and a violin.

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Music from the 20th Century - Germany

Contributed by Constanze Krause

The Akkordeonclub Hirschau e.V. performed a variety of 20th century music in Tübingen on December 11th . Their program was "a time trip through this century" beginning with a piece from the movie "Star trek", followed by music from every decade such as 1910 (The Entertainer), 1920 (Charlston), 1930 (American Patrol), 1950 (Perfidia), 1960 (The Twist) and 1970 (Songs from Bert Kämpfert, Spanish eyes, Swinging Safari and California Dreaming). Their finale was a 1980 Disco-Medley with "YMCA", "D-I-S-C-O" and "I will survive".

New Sites - Information on accordion music supplier Jetelina Information on concert accordionist Joseph Petric Updated information including the second Preissler Catalog "Akkordeon-Bande" with shopping basket is online in German Information on the Las Vegas International Accordion Convention which is dedicated to promoting and preserving the heritage of the stradella accordion and to providing a forum for accordion clubs. Information on the United States National News Publication "Accordion USA".

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Antique Accordion Information

James Lucatamo would like some information on a Cantulia make or model of accordion. If you can help please email:

Jeanne Whalen would like some details on Tonevari accordions. Please email:

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