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“From Classic to Folk - The World of the Accordion”
2020 Workshop and Presenter Information

2020 Convention Presenters and Workshops (scroll down the page or link to the information):

Accordion Orchestra and/or Group Training Sessions

Dick Albreski
NAA Convention Band Director: Dick Albreski
NAA Famous Fun Band
Attention Starting Accordionists!


Sam Falcetti
Sam Falcetti: Springfield, MA.

Sam Falcetti will conduct a 100% digital Orchestra. Conventioneers must sign up before the convention on a first come first serve bases. The sheet music (and sounds) are now available on the music page. Sam is requesting a minimum of 14 digital players.

NAA Digital Orchestra Directions

Digital Orchestra Selections:


Shelia Lee
Shelia Lee: The Whole World of Accordion, including Texas!


NAA Dance Band 2020 (1939 to 1992 songs!)
2020 NAA Dance Band Music (blue words link to Youtube)


Matthias Matzke
2020 Symphonic Orchestra director: Matthias Matzke

Matzke is sending his favorite musical arrangements. After the initial read-through, Matthias and the orchestra participants will select the actual arrangements to be preformed on the evening concert.

Symphonic Orchestra Musical Selections:

NAA Orchestra 2020 Matthias Matzke
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Individual/Team Workshop Information

Dick Albreski
Dick Albreski: Oklahoma City Accordion Club    www.OklahomaAccordionClub

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Gary Blair from Scottland
Gary Blair: Scotland



    Workshop Session 1: Tricks and tips on Accordion techniques
      1. Gary will show how to achieve a better technique, playing style, and proper bellows control.
      2. How to make any style, more authentic.
      3. The do’s and don’ts of playing the accordion.

    Workshop Session 2: How to play authentic Scottish and Irish music.
      1. Gary will show the various techniques required, to play Celtic music properly.
      2. How to articulate and add Ornaments to enhance any tune.

Gary Blair
    Gary plays a wide variety of music from many different cultures and countries. His styles include dance, popular, classical, Celtic and traditional accordion. Gary began playing accordion at age 8, learning from his father Jimmy — a renowned musician, teacher and band leader, and has competed in and won scores of accordion competitions, and is highly sought after as an adjudicator at competitions.

    He has appeared on TV and radio, and often performs at accordion gatherings and festivals around the world. Gary teaches in private as well as by Skype with pupils around the world. He performs solo, as a performer and director of the Jimmy Blair Orchestra, as the leader of the Gary Blair Ceilidh Band and with other accordionists.

    He has been honored with the title "Honored friend of the Accordion " by the CIA and title " Veterani della fisarmonica " by the Rossini institute in Italy. He is in great demand around the world.
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Gail Campanella
Gail Campanella, California.

Your performance: It's Not About YOU.

Solo Performance. Before......During........After

Gail Campanella:
    Gail opens her workshop session with a 15-minute model performance then covers the A, B, C, concepts related to delivering a professional performance.
      A - BEFORE: Seven important steps to complete before taking the stage.
      B - DURING: Six ways to relate to your audience, including the "Gift."
      C - AFTER: Six steps that lead to future engagements.

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Eli Davidshon
Eli Davidsohn

Workshop Session: How to Make a Party Fun!
How to get audience participation at a Jewish wedding, bar or Bat Mitzvah with Israeli, and Jewish Music and at a Spanish party or program. Sample of Israeli music appropriate for different Jewish occasions, and some Spanish party music.

Eli Davidsohn, Dallas, Texas:
    Born in La Paz, Bolivia from Jewish parents, at the age of nine I started playing the Accordion by ear, learned how to read music, but continued playing by ear and learning songs in many different languages. Came to the US at the age of 18, continued playing the Accordion, learned how to play Guitar in the army after being drafted during the Vietnam war, and other instruments such as Piano, Recorder and any other instrument that I had in front of me.
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Gary Dahl the Legacy          Gary Dahl Logo

Gary Dahl, the Legacy Continues . . .

2020 Festival Favorites
2020 National Accordion Convention Music Book:

Gary Dahl Advertisement:

    Tris Gour is now managing the Gary Dahl: The Legend Continues web publishing company that is publishing accordion-related music books. As an introductory offer to accordionist attending the 2020 Convention, they will be publishing a special copy for the NAA that will be sold during the convention.

    Go to their website and select one or more arrangements that you would like to see published and sold during the convention.

    Complete this form to tell us your musical selections that you want to see in this special music book.

Dahl Tote Bags
Gary Dahl, the Legacy Continues is furnishing the tote bags for the 2020 Convention

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Bob Donovan
Bob Donovan, Nashville, TN:


Workshop Session 1: Getting started with configuring the FR8x
    This workshop session will focus on getting beginners of the Roland FR-8x familiar with the basic operation of the accordion using the menus of the 8x, how to backup and restore, how to set bellow curves, and audio settings. We will also cover Sets and user programs. The class will cover how to create a user program to recall favorite voices.
      1. Review basic settings
      2. Backup and restore
      3. Sets and User programs
      4. Saving a favorite voice into a user program
    Some of the principals apply also to the Bugari Evo or the Roland FR-4x.

Workshop Session 2: Advanced Programming of the Roland FR8x and FR4x:
    This workshop session will focus on advanced editing of the FR-8x and FR-4x using the program editor. The class will focus on editing voices, reverb, chorus, delay, and multi-effects to get the desired sound for your performances.
      1. Connecting the editor to the 8x
      2. Editing a User Program, changing the voice, and other sound characteristics
      3. Copy a User Program
Bob Donovan - Tennessee:
    Bob has been playing accordion for more than 10 years and lives in Nashville, TN. Bob has performed at various Oktoberfest events as well as beer houses in Cincinnati and Nashville. Also, Bob has performed with various bands that play Classic Rock, Country, TexMex, Zydeco, and Celtic music. He has always focused on the Digital Accordion and had shown excellent presentation and teaching skills at the Gr8Ideas Symposium in Ohio.
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Elena Fainstein
Elena Fainshtein, Richardson, Texas



Workshop Session: Russian folk music for intermediate level
    Don’t miss this particular workshop with Elena. She will present several famous Russian tunes for attendees to learn during this session and then play with her! Elena, a native of Belarus, will share secrets of her style, improvisation, and her firsthand knowledge of the cultural aspects of songs chosen from the rich depth of Russian folk music. This participation-rich session is guaranteed to be not only informative but a lot of fun and surprises! Come play, come learn, come enjoy! Elena will provide music of Russian Tunes for beginning and intermediate level Interactive Workshop with conventioneers participating.

Elena is a professional accordion performer, teacher and conductor.
    Elena was born and grew up in Belarus. She studied at the music college in Minsk and studied further at the State Academy of music. She works as a teacher of accordion more than 30 years, last 16 years in her own Musical Expression Accordion School here in Texas. She teaches in private as well as by Skype and have students all over the world. Several of her students won championships in the “Big Squeeze” contest in recent years. Last Elena established an Accordion Orchestra. She is playing in a duo with her husband Gregory and has toured through Europe, North America and Israel.
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Sam Falcetti
Sam Falcetti: Springfield, MA.


Workshop Session 1. How to learn more about styles and patterns in the left hand:
    This is the number one question asked by those playing an accordion. They want to play more than just alternating bass & chords. This workshop has a handout with examples and suggested songs with 20 patterns & styles. If you attend you will be able to learn how to walk the basses like the “pro’s”.

    Guaranteed! Back in the 60’s and 70’s I wrote 7 “Popular Music Ideas” books and used them exclusively at Falcetti Music. Recently I have upgraded these books and now make them available to my fellow accordionists.

Workshop Session 2. MP3 Files: Using your USB port to play along with an MP3 file:
    Some of you might remember the “Music Minus One” and other systems that followed but none were as good as what Roland created in 2009 on the Roland 7X model with the use of the Thumb Drive. We will talk about playing along with original recordings by the artists both instrumental and vocal. Some questions that are often asked are what sounds do I use? When do I play melody or chords? fill in patterns? and how about the transposition to accommodate different keys? The complete package that I use in teaching my Roland students is now available.

Workshop Session 3. Two for one:
    Memorize a short song in 5 minutes & how to fake a song in 5 minutes After over 50 years of teaching I have heard from many students that he or she cannot play anything by memory. Many years ago, I developed a system in teaching to help people overcome this stumbling block. This workshop has a handout that will give you the ability to be able to memorize quickly. The second part is a little more involved, but the results are the same. It works! What a thrill it is to play a song for which you’ve never played or seen the music. The handout takes you step by step on how to accomplish this. We start with very simple folk songs and move on from there.

Anselmo (Sam) Falcetti, Westfield, Ma.,
    Sam started on the accordion at the age of 10 and began home teaching at the age of 16. Before graduating from the University of Hartford with a bachelor’s degree in Theory & Composition, he opened his first accordion teaching studio in Westfield, Ma. As the years progressed Sam became President and CEO of Falcetti Music, a 50-year, eight store music chain in both Massachusetts and Connecticut.

    In the 70’s and 80’s he was an adjunct professor at both Holyoke Community College and Westfield State University where over 20 of his students graduated with a major on the accordion. During this period his accordion college ensemble performed twice at Carnegie Hall in New York City. Sam has adjudicated and presented his workshops all over the USA. Throughout his career many of his students became professional educators and performers and in 2011 he was selected to represent the USA as a judge at the 5th Roland International Festival in Rome, Italy.

    Mr. Falcetti was the founder and conductor of the Springfield Accordion Orchestra, a group who performed at the 1970 World’s Fair in Osaka, Japan and appeared in 1971 on National TV’s David Frost show along with the vocalist Roberta Flack. The Orchestra also toured Italy in 1973, performed at Disney World in 1975 and performed at the 1980 Coupe Mondiale in New Zealand

    Since his retirement Sam returned to his 1st love of teaching students on the Roland Digital Accordion. As New England’s Roland Digital Accordion distributor he provides sales and service throughout the USA.

    He also formed the only Digital Accordion Orchestra in the USA who have performed many concerts throughout New England. In October of 2019, Sam was chosen as the very first “IDEAS FACULTY SCHOLAR”. This position is a Lifetime honorary appointment to the Symposium Faculty. He is on the Board of Directors of the AAA, ATAM, and a member of the MAAA.

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Tris Gour
Tris Gour: Indiana


Workshop Session 1: You CAN Play from Lead Sheets - Part 1:
    This course will provide attendees with a basic understanding of how to play using lead sheets (i.e. Fakebook). For this course, a lead sheet will be provided to all attendees with notated descriptions and other important tips at least 60 days prior to the convention date.

    This class will introduce or review for the attendees, using both instructor lead and additional descriptive materials, the basic concepts of:
      1. Chord Symbols - The defining characteristic component of a lead sheet
      2. Tempo, Styles, Clef, Key and Time Signatures - These provide a basic orientation of the lead sheet
      3. Melody - An explanation of the single-line melody and how to effectively incorporate it into your performance
      4. Roadmaps, Repeats, and Arrangement Direction - An explanation of why lead sheets are kept concise using multiple passes through a section, multiple ending systems, codas, and even segnos
      5. Lyrics - How to incorporate this common addition to clarify communication between the performer and additional performers and/or a vocalist

    The instructor will assist the participants in understanding the most common information contained in a lead sheet and using it to maximize their performance. A demonstration will be provided showing participants how to achieve an improved level of creative freedom with lead sheets.

Workshop Session 2: It's YOUR Turn - You CAN Play from Lead Sheets - Part 2:
    Part 2 of this workshop will provide interested participants the opportunity to demonstrate to others what they've learned as they interpret a lead sheet. Once the first attendee has demonstrated what they've learned and accomplished, it's likely that others will do the same. The goal of Part 2 is to show that any person can become a good accordion player without necessarily being the greatest music notation reader. It's important to understand that becoming a good notation reader does not equal, nor is it a requirement for, becoming a good accordion player.

Workshop Session 3: Accordion for Singers - Quickly Learn to Accompany Yourself and Others:
    This workshop will enhance the attendees' ability to accompany themselves or other vocalists with confidence. Most attendees also notice an improvement in their singing due to an increased knowledge of harmonics and timing. This course is focused on learning to be able quickly to perform live, record videos for YouTube or Facebook, and find engagements that are suitable for the performer’s level of experience.

    This course will cover:
      1. Music theory introducing harmonics and rhythm
      2. Creating a 'bed’ for your vocal
      3. Selecting the appropriate key to enhance your vocal ability
      4. Playing to a level that will entertain your audience
      5. Choosing and adapting repertoire
      6. Obtaining appropriate lead sheets
      7. Equipment needed
      8. Reading an audience and playing what they want
Workshop Session 4: Secrets to Begin Improvising with Success:
    This workshop will introduce a collection of five notes that will sound good regardless of when or how they are played. Many accordion players have struggled to learn to play a simple solo only to become frustrated and give up. This workshop will present the pentatonic scale which is one of the great secrets of improvisation. Creative musicians around the world, playing in many different styles, rely on these notes as a basis for their improvisations. The reason is simple: with no half steps to create dissonance, the pentatonic scale sounds good over any chord progression that stays in one key!
    Highlights of this workshop include:
      1. Variations in rhythms using combinations of half, quarter, and eighth notes
      2. Learning that it is not necessary to fill all the empty space in an improvisation as sometimes less is more
      3. How to include articulations and dynamics that add sophistication to your improvisations
      4. Learning to not always stop and judge your performance
      5. How to continue to explore until you discover creative solo's you like
Tris Gour makes his home in Northern Indiana with his wife Gloria.
    He has been a musician, performer, and accordionist from a very young age. Tris began his studies at the age of 8 with the prestigious Gene Van Accordion Conservatory of Northern Indiana. Tris won numerous state accordion championships in several divisions and went on to receive the first runner-up in the AAA US Open Pop Solo division and winning the US Open Jazz Combo division.

    Tris started playing professionally at the age of 13 and by age 15 was playing 50 weeks per year. During his later teen years, Tris lead a top tier band that performed throughout the Midwest at popular hotel chains, night clubs, and private and corporate events in addition to being featured as a guest act for famous entertainers. More recently, Tris performed with a prominent R&B Tribute Band that included musicians who toured with Marvin Gaye, The Temptations, Curtis Mayfield, Junior Walker, George Michael, and Aretha Franklin.

    Tris currently owns and operates August Dream Studios LLC, through which he has provided music for commercial and film scoring projects, music equipment manufacturers, and has aided in the development of software sample libraries. After the unexpected passing of his last teacher Gary Dahl, Tris began managing Gary Dahl - The Legacy www.facebook.com/cordovox/ and continues and teaches accordion to students located all over the globe.

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Gordon Kohl
Gordon Kohl: California


Workshop Session 1:Playing the Beautiful Music of Austria
    This music workshop will present a variety of songs to be played on the accordion while visiting the towns sand cities in Austria. Music examples will include Strauss, a Viennese folk song, a Tyrolian tune, a landler from a small town named Karlstadt and of course a Mozart favorite. The purpose of these workshop is to bring the accordionist and the music styles loved by the Austrian culture together.

Workshop Session 2: Playing Dance Standards With Musical Flair
    Success for a dance band is not left to chance, the music must have energy, drive and bring dancers to the dance floor. A jumping dance arrangement needs a good dance tempo and exiting rhythm that does not drag. Expression enhances a melody, voicing a song with high and low reeds gives color and excitement to a song. Accordion arrangements with harmonic chords add depth and fullness to songs. That big sound help put an audience in a dancing mood. Wild and fancy intros and ending drive a band’s music style. All good music arrangements need personality. Gordon will give you a list of tools he uses from his “musical tool box”. They work for listening music and great songs played on stage for dances and public events. First and foremost, have an extensive library of music to build great accordion arrangements too. Song arrangements will be demonstrated and given out in workshops. Songs include: My Melody of Love, Love, You are the sunshine of my life, Return to me, and Rhinestone Cowboy.

Gordon Kohl
    Gordon has been teaching music since high school. He has been teaching accordion, piano, keyboard, music theory, music arranging and workshops on a variety of music study topics. He especially enjoys teaching in the topics of chord usage and electronic voicing for the digital accordion. He also has a passion for being a musician.

    At the age of thirteen, he began playing the accordion professionally. From his high school years to the present he enjoys gigging in a combo. Teaching music and being a musician has been his passion and journey. Gordon continues to write music arrangements, new compositions and educational materials for individual and group instruction.

    He chose as a teen to develop his sounds using both the acoustic and digital musical instruments along with the accordion. He really has a passion for expression and dynamics on the reed accordion.
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Shelia Lee image
Shelia Lee: Blog-based accordionist living in the piny woods of East Texas:

Shelia Lee's Accordion Blog - Accordion Playing Made Fun!

Play the Accordion from any Written Music (Piano, Vocal, Hymnal, etc.):
    Shelia addresses questions such as:
      1. Want to play your favorite song but can’t find an Accordion Arrangement?
      2. Want to understand all the ‘silly’ symbols you see on Vocal music?
      3. Want to figure out which note to play on a full published piano or Church Hymnal version?
      4. Want to know which basses to play?

    Answer: Well – this is the workshop for you!!!!!!

    Workshop Take Away:
      Interested 2020 conventioneers will leave this workshop with over 15 Beatles tunes and full knowledge to be able to read at any published level of sheet music that is not arranged for an accordion!

Shelia Lee
    Shelia Lee is a classically trained accordion under Willard Palmer and Bill Hughes. She opened her 1st music studio at the age of 21 in Dayton Ohio (Shelia’s Accordion Conservatory) and her 2nd one at the age 60! In Houston Texas (Houston Accordion Performers/Heritage Arts Productions). In addition to her years of teaching, she also had her own combo for 22 years and multiple years as a recording studio musician. Shelia is currently semi-retired and teaches Piano accordion, Chromatic, & Diatonic accordion via the Internet to students all over the world (Australia, Dubai, Alaska, Canada, Peru, & USA). She also maintains an Accordion Blog (www.shelialee.wordpress.com) where she has over 850,000 hits, over 500 FREE down-loadable custom arranged accordion solos, duets, & ensembles, and extensive technique building posts.

    In her “retirement” she finds time for her elevated garden, flock of chickens, quilting, and of course still performing solo and duet shows with Bill Palmer (III).
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Matthias Matzke

Matthias Matzke: Germany


Workshop Session 1. Reading Music vs. Understanding Music.
    Matthias demonstrates his approach to prepare songs:
      1. Efficiently and to expand your memorized repertoire.
      2. Connecting music theory with accordion methodology.
      3. Sustain musical creativity from the first moment of sight-reading until the final stage of performance.
      4. Improvisation and/or composition.

Workshop Session 2. Transcribe Pop Hits to "Cool" Accordion Music:
    Learn to transcribe pop hits from the radio and learn patterns and arrangement tricks to bring them to a “cool” sound on the accordion and digital accordion.

Matthias Matzke. Gingen an der Fils, Germany:
    Matthias was one of the first Jazz Accordion Bachelors in Hans-Günther Kölz’s class at the Hohner Conservatory Trossingen and the Institute of Music at the University Osnabrück. Versed in many musical styles his repertoire reaches from classical music and original works to jazz, pop and rock. Besides solo projects on classical and digital accordion Matthias works as an arranger, composer and songwriter; amongst others for his Crossover Band „Synthonic Rock“ and different duo projects with Leonie Kratz featuring classical soprano and movement.

    Milestones of his career are first prizes of numerous national and international contests such as „Deutscher Akkordeon Musikpreis“, „Jugend musiziert“, „Roland V-Accordion Festival“ and „Coupe Mondiale“. His musical activity also includes journalism, education and lectureships. As a soloist, Matthias played works for accordion and symphony orchestra and is a member of Germany’s federal accordion orchestra. He gained experience in radio and TV shows and played concerts all over the world (Shanghai, Peking, Seoul, Tokyo, Ankara, St. Petersburg, Costa Rica, the USA and Europe).

    Matthias Matzke is known as pioneer for the digital accordion and also studied electronic music at the Hohner Conservatory. Finding modern ways to express music on his instrument has always been his vision. The accordion may sometimes be underestimated - this, however, makes the instrument the more promising in his eyes.
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Funky Ginnie
Ginny Mac ( Cowtown USA aka Fort Worth, Texas)



Workshop Session: Accordions & Western Swing:
    This session will focus on several renowned Western Swing accordionists and their playing styles. We will also cover improvisation and some quintessential Western Swing tunes to expand the repertoire!

Ginny Mac: Hailing from Fort Worth, TX.
    Ginny Mac fronts a dynamic group that brings a fresh and exciting twist to vocal and instrumental stylings in the Country & Western Swing, Americana, and Hot Jazz music genres. Ginny is a former member of the two-time Grammy Award winning group Brave Combo based in Denton, TX. She has shared the stage with Ray Benson (Asleep At The Wheel), Joey Miskulin (Riders In The Sky), Tanya Tucker, Drew Carey, members of Bob Wills & The Texas Playboys, and many others. She endorses Menghini s.r.l. Scandalli Accordions based in Castelfidardo, Italy.
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Randy McPeck
Randy McPeck: Minnesota



Randy is the Room Coordinator for Longhorn II that includes the responsibility for scheduling activities in that area.

    Workshop - Accordion bellows in’s and outs
    Accordion bellow repairs, bellow tape repair, bellow corner service, repair bellow leaks, and bellow gasket repair

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Mike Middleton
Mike Middleton, Temple, TX


Enhance your acoustic accordion with MIDI Mike will showcase how to enhance your acoustic accordion using MIDI sounds. He will include in his presentation examples like the Texas Folk Medley, his popular Amazing Grace accordion variations and others.

Mike Middleton: Temple, Texas
    Dr. Mike Middleton, an award-winning Texan accordionist, and will be interacting in various convention activities that includes Midi enhanced Accordion music and other accordion favorites from his recent albums and from his participation at the World Accordion Museum, where he serves as a Board Member. He also leads a popular band, “Mike & The Middletones”.

    Dr. Mike's music is unique in that he utilizes Midi to enhance and modify his acoustic accordion sound. Selections could include: various Texas folk music pieces such as Ghost Riders in The Sky, Red River Valley, Yellow Rose of Texas, Waltz Across Texas, San Antonio Rose, and others featured with the 2017 Temple Symphony (Temple, Texas), as well as his unique Amazing Grace Accordion Variations. Mike is always ready to provide 30 minute or 1 hour of polka/waltzes and Texas folk music suitable for dancing.

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Richard Noel
Richard Noel (Bakersville, CA):


Work Session I: From Acoustic to Digital - A Transformative Journey:
    The purpose of this session is to create an awareness of how a digital accordion can transform your music and even your life. For those who embrace all that the v-accordion has to offer, you can expect changes in your musical repertoire, your arrangements, your playing techniques, your technology understanding, in your overall knowledge of music from around the world, and changes in the reactions of audiences. The world-wide network of digital accordionists is enthusiastic and supportive. Through my own experiences and examples, I will review how the digital accordion has impacted my musical life in each of these areas.

Work Session II: Preparing and Playing Your Digital Accordion for All Occasions:
    The Roland V-Accordions come with factory sets and user programs, but these are frequently not adequate for each performer's needs and preferences. To be able to play a wide variety of music without taking extensive time to search, it is essential to create and organize your programs so that you can get to the desired sounds quickly and accurately. Those sounds should be appropriate to the type or genre of music you are playing, which may involve significant research and programming. Additionally, you may need to adjust your playing style to present different instruments in an authentic and effective way. This session will focus on ways of organizing and playing the v-accordion, with an emphasis on my "Styles" system, so that you can quickly and effectively play a wide variety of music for any occasion.

Richard Noel, Bakersfield, California:
    Richard has been in the forefront of promoting and programming the Roland digital accordions. His Youtube channel, Bakersfieldaccordion, is devoted entirely to demonstrating the digital accordions, and he has acquired more than 11,000 subscribers and over 7 million views. Richard plays a wide variety of music while demonstrating the amazing versatility of the digital accordion.

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Cory Pesaturo

Cory Pesaturo, Rhode Island:



Workshop Session 1. Italian / French
    Looking into the high level of flamboyance in French Musette Music, both in constant tempo changes, thumb slides and how to add notes / fills. We will also go over Tarantella rhythm, and the strange forms and phrasing of Italian music. Plus, the Neapolitan b2. Musical examples will be played from recordings for each.

    This is an interactive work session with a maximum of 10 conventioneer participating and playing the accordion. Additional conventioneers are welcome in “listening only” mode that is also a learning tool.

Workshop Session 2: Tango and Brazilian:
    How to play Not on the beat but a constant flow of being ahead & behind it; that is Tango.  Also, various aspects of Brazilian music, including 3/3/2 & 3/4/4/3/2+ grooves.  Musical examples will be played from recordings for each. Interactive, Conventioneer Participating

    This is an interactive work session with a maximum of 10 conventioneer participating and playing the accordion. Additional conventioneers are welcome in “listening only” mode that is also a learning tool.  

Workshop 3. Klezmer and Balkan
    The scale is both these genres are very different than most music accordionists play. We’ll go over the intricacies of Klezmer, with the many different grooves it offers, and try to get Odd Meters into people’s playing for Balkan! 7/8, 11/8, 13/8, etc..

    This is an interactive work session with a maximum of 10 conventioneer participating and playing the accordion. Additional conventioneers are welcome in “listening only” mode that is also a learning tool.
Cory Pesaturo (“C Pez”)
    Cory is on the forefront of the accordion world, pushing the boundaries on multiple fronts of what is possible with the accordion. The only person to ever win a World Championship on all 3 of Acoustic, Digital, and Jazz Accordion, and the only accordion graduate of the prestigious New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, MA. In 2017, Pesaturo became a Guinness World Record Holder, as RedBull® flew him to Austria to break the Marathon Accordion Record, in which Cory played for over 32 hours. Cory’s main contribution is his visionary thinking of how the accordion should be used, played, taught, and presented in modern music. He has given a TED Talk about this, which is currently the only talk in the world about the accordion. Pesaturo is also developing his own electric accordion, and already has made the first ever skinned accordion which includes a symmetric lighting system attached to the keys.

    Pesaturo's extensive resumé includes appearances at the White House for President and Mrs. Clinton on 4 different occasions, starting at age 12, and 8 other appearances for the Clintons since 2000, along with 14 letters from the first family. Some TV appearances include the Late Show, performing with Johnny Depp, and nationally televised programs in New Zealand, Canada, Italy, Tunisia, France, and Finland. On an NYC broadcast, CNBC/FOX host Maria Bartiromo once said, “No one is currently doing more for the Accordion than Cory”.

    On his Classical side which is lesser known, a win in a concerto competition at 16 years old gave Pesaturo the rare opportunity to perform with the Brockton Symphony Orchestra as a featured soloist, where he became the youngest accordionist to ever solo with a symphony orchestra in the US back in 2003.

    Cory says: I feel these workshops should Be Interactive, “Masterclass” style. I will be able to teach much better using examples as people try and figure out the details of which I am giving for each genre.

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Logo for Private Lessons Sabine Baggio image
Private Lessons with the Professionals:
The 2020 conventions offers conventioneers the unique opportunity taking private lessons with convention leader. The non-negotiable price is $50 for a 50-minute session. The private sessions will be conducted in the Bluebonnet room located on the second floor away from other convention activities.

If you are interested, contact Sabine Baggio, Convention Coordinator either prior to the convention Sabine.Baggio@gmail.com, or during the convention.

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Sharon Seaton Sharon
Sharon Seaton: North Texas


Workshop: Sharon Seaton's "Circle of Confidence":
    Sharon will be conducting this activity in Arlyn's 15-minutes of Fame area.
      Accordionists will come prepared to play one or two short musical selections for a small group of peer players. Dr. Sharon Seaton is encouraging each performer to play pieces needing some type of improvement. Prior to playing the music, the performer is to state the reason this music was selected. Then the other participants will be invited to comment on the performance, offering positive encouragement and possible suggestions for improvement as related to the performer's opening statements.

      Participation in this workshop will be limited to 8-10 musicians but will be repeated as desired by the conventioneers. Skill level? The ability to hold an accordion and to play a minimum of one musical selection.

Panel Discussion: 2020-2029 USA/Canadian "World of the Accordions":
    What will our "Accordion World" look like during this decade?

    Survey Link: Send Sharon your opinions and questions that you want the "panel of experts" to discuss

    . Our Panel of Experts will answer that question during the 2020 Convention!
      The panel will consist of representatives from:
        • Teaching-related career positions.
        • Organizational leaders.
        • Vendors and manufacturing representatives.

      Every decade, the Accordion World conducts a self-study designed to keep accordion lovers as excited about this musical instrument during the next decade as we were during the last decade (2010-2019). Of course, this self-study occurs at the 2020 National Accordion Convention because we are the first accordion convention of the decade starting in 2020.

    Moderator: Sharon Seaton, Ed. D.
      As an NAA board member, professor of music, and a professional musician, Dr. Sharon Seaton was selected to moderate the panel of experts who will express their opinions concerning the future of the accordion. She will also collect questions and recommendations from the conventioneers.

    Panel Procedures:
      March 1, 2020, Sharon will launch a questionnaire to registered conventioneers, designed to:
        • Collect the names of members for the Panel of Experts.
        • Recommendations for the current decade.
        • Related questions that need to be asked.

      The information will be organized and presented during the convention. The results of this meeting will be summarized in the post-convention survey and eventually be available for all accordion-related media services.
Dr. Sharon Seaton is a professional accordionist in the Dallas area.
    She teaches music at El Centro College, including private piano lessons. When working with private students, she incorporates technical skills, memorization, preparing for performance, and sight reading into student lessons.

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Duet: Tutto a Dio      Agustinas Rakauskas     Greta     Neringa   

Tutto a Dio (Lithuania):


Workshop Session 1: The art of musical improvisation“ (Tutto a Dio)
    The majority of classical musicians learn most pieces from written sheet of music. Nevertheless, we know a lot of jazz musicians that are able to create various melodies autonomously by following the harmonic chord line and become instant composers at once. This phenomenon we call musical improvisation.

    The following questions will be answered:
      1. Is everyone able to improvise?
      2. What are the secrets of improvising?
      3. How can we reveal our own personalities through the improvisation?
    We will discuss improvising and experiments during Workshop 1.

Workshop Session 2: Improve your playing technique (Augustinas Rakauskas)
    There are lots of approaches to improve your accordion technique.
    In this session, we will discuss a number of aspects such as:
      1. The role of both left and right hands
      2. Chord technique
      3. The development of velocity
      4. Control of the bellows
      5. And more in in order to improve your playing skills and discover your individual relationship with the instrument.

    I will present certain series of exercises that I have studied myself as well as the exercises of the renowned French professor Frédéric Deschamps that contributed a lot while building my own technique. I will be happy to share my suggestions in practice during this workshop.

Duo „Tutto a Dio“ Greta Staponkutė-Rakau (viola) & Augustinas Rakauskas (accordion)
    “Tutto a Dio” – it is a duet of two exceptional Lithuanian musicians: Greta Staponkutė (viola) and Augustinas Rakauskas (accordion). The duet is appreciated for their exquisite performances colored by professional and creative musicality. “Tutto a Dio” won the first prize at the prestigious “Trophée Mondial - 2017” in France. In addition this, the duo is the 1st prize winner of the most prominent international competitions as “Coupe Mondiale – 2018” (Lithuania), “Premio Internazionale di Castelfidardo 2017” (Italy), Grand Prix „Sion-2014” (Switzerland). “Tutto a Dio” performances enchanted the audience in California, Maine, Colorado, Florida, Denver, New York, New Hampshire, Massachusetts (USA), Switzerland, Latvia, Finland, Germany, Luxembourg, Italy, France, Bulgaria, Greece, Turkey, etc. The duo is invited to participate in various international events in Europe and North America, as well as in Lithuanian embassies abroad. Both duet members have set up their international careers individually. Augustinas Rakauskas became a vice champion of the “Trophée Mondial” in Victoria B.C., Canada in 2018, the 3rd Prize winner of the “Coupe Mondiale” in Lithuania as well as the 1st Prize winner of the Kiefer Hablizel | Göhner Foundation Music Competition in Switzerland in two consecutive years. Over the recent years he has performed a lot in Europe, USA, Canada, China, featuring in major music festivals. After finishing her internship in Lausanne Chamber Orchestra (Switzerland) Greta Staponkutė-Rakau has been touring with the prestigious chamber orchestras such as Kremerata Baltica and Lausanne Soloists. As the first solo viola of this orchestras, she has performed with major conductors and soloists such as Martha Argerich, Gidon Kremer, Chick Corea, Renaud Capuçon, Mirga Gražinytė-Tyla, etc. Curiosity and constant aspiration for improvement are another prominent features of the members of „Tutto a Dio”: Greta and Augustinas are the Master graduates at the Lausanne Academy of Music in Switzerland.

    Neringa Neringa Radėnaitė (soprano) The soprano Neringa Radėnaitė has graduated from the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre possessing two bachelors in choir-conducting and vocal performance. She later received her Master’s in Opera Singing at the Conservatorio di Santa Cecilia in Rome. Neringa has performed worldwide together with duo “Tutto a Dio” touring in Europe and USA as well as the production cast opera singer in luxury cruise line “Silversea” where she won an artistic audition in 2017 to go on the music tours in Europe, Africa & Asia. She has received several international scholarships such as Ministero degli Affari Esteri scholarship for music education, Fondaziione Alimondo Ciampi scholarship as well as the scholarship of Associazione Maria Cristina di Savoia. Neringa has been awarded with the Special Maria Malibran prize in Maria Malibran International lyric singing competition in Milano, in 2018.

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Walk-in sign
"Walk-in Clinic" for Roland V-Accordion and/or Bugaria Evo Accordions:
    You have a specific problem with your Roland V-Accordion or Bugaria Evo? Just come to the walk-in clinic and we try to help you out with your specific problem. This is on a first-come, first serve bases and we try to keep the individual questions to 10 minutes.

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Arlyn Visentin

Arlyn Visentin - Houston, Texas area

Claim Your 15 Minutes of Fame in 2020

    Did you bring your accordion to the convention but left it hidden in your hotel room? Well, go get it and claim your 15 Minutes of Fame! Come and show us your treasured instrument. Play your favorite music to a nonjudgmental group of enthusiasts. Perform solo or with your friends and make new friends. Musicians playing other instruments and vocalists are also welcome to accompany the accordionists, if desired. The possibilities for fun are endless! All participants receive a chance to win the door prize of the day. Hang out here and socialize between workshops. This is one of the most popular events at the NAA Convention and you make it happen.

    Arlyn was honored to receive the 2019 Achievement Award at last year’s convention, “For Promoting Others to Advance Their Talents.” Arlyn wants to say, “Thank you”, to NAA and all of the music enthusiasts and accordionists who have participated and helped to make 15 Minutes of Fame a success!

    Arlyn says: Music enthusiasts and other instruments are welcome too.

    We love accordions. We love having fun with music and you’re invited! Let us hear your accordion and let’s become famous at the Convention! Don’t miss it!

    Arlyn is the master in managing the "fame" event and taking pictures for the NAA web-based photo gallery.

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Invitation to become a 2020 Vendor (link)

2020 Business-Partners

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