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  19 November 2004This weeks news | Past News  | Send news

This Weeks News

  • Golden Jubilee of HVÖ, Vienna - Austria
  • 4th European Festival of Accordion Orchestras 2006, Prague - Czech Republic
  • A New Premiere from Dr William Schimmel, New York - USA
  • Music of Piazzolla Concert, Paris - France
  • Stockport Accordion Club Concerts, England - UK
  • Music China - International Exhibition for Musical Instruments and Services, Shanghai - China
  • Veteran Jazz Musician Pete Jolly Dead at 72, Los Angeles - USA
  • Renzo Ruggieri, Teramo Jazz Festival - Italy
  • Sir Jimmy Shand Recordings Digitally Remastered, Scotland - UK
  • Mauro Carra Performance, London - UK
  • Accordion Festival, Torres Vedras - Portugal
  • Question
  • Quote of the Week
  • CD Review
  • New and Updated Sites
  • Nicemelody

    Golden Jubilee of HVÖ, Vienna - Austria
    Contributed by Dr. Herbert Scheibenreif of Friedrich Lips Productions

    To commemorate its 50th anniversary, Austria's Accordion Association HVÖ recently organised a jubilee concert with many of Austria's best accordion soloists, ensembles and orchestras in Vienna's 'Odeon' to show the enormous development of the instrument from its very beginning until nowadays. The accordion orchestra Accordeana Graz, Duo ConTact, Stefan Scherr (Styrian harmonica), The Viennese Accordion Club, Isabella Krapf (harmonica), Alexander Shevchenko, Georg Schulz - Ulli Stadler Fromme (accordion and percussion), folk music ensemble Johann Murg, and the Viennese Accordion Chamber Ensemble were the artistes on this most memorable evening. Many of Austria's best accordionists of the past decades have also been prize winners in the competitions organized by HVÖ and have represented Austria at successive international competitions.
    Gary Dahl

    4th European Festival of Accordion Orchestras 2006, Prague - Czech Republic

    The Czech Accordion Association and the Concert and travel agency Club Tours Agentur Prague are organizing an International competition for accordion orchestras as a part of the 4th European Accordion Festival in Prague. This will take place from April 20th to 23rd 2006, and applications to compete must be received by January 15th 2006.

    For further information email CTA@IOL.CZ

    The festival will be held in the impressive hall of the Vinohrady National House and in other representative city halls. All registered non-professional accordion orchestras may participate. Accordion orchestras and friends from all over the world are welcome to this great international music show.

    Categories include:-

    I. Junior Accordion Orchestras
    Orchestras of 12 and more musicians - at least 70% of the members must be under the age 16 years. These bands may also include other instruments with at least 10 accordions. Free choice of program without any limitations.

    II. Classical Music
    Orchestras of 12 and more musicians, no age limit. Bands may also include other instruments in addition to at least 10 accordions. One test piece must be played.
    Level: 5

    III. Light Music
    Orchestras of 12 or more members with no age limit, either consisting mainly of accordions or of other instruments (where the accordion predominates). Free choice of program - no test piece.


    A to Z of the Accordion

    A New Premiere from Dr William Schimmel, New York - USA

    Dr William Schimmel will present his new work, Capriccio Brasilia - for accordion, vocals and melodica - in a world premiere performance on November 19th at Christ and St Stephen's Church in the Lincoln Center area of New York City. The concert is presented by Composers' Conference, and Dr Schimmel will be interviewed before the performance as part of a 'Meet the Composer' grant that he received for this piece. Joining him in the performance will be Allyssa Lamb on vocals and melodica.

    Here is what Dr Schimmel says about the piece: "Capriccio Brasilia celebrates the architecture of Oscar Niemeyer, who designed Brasilia, and the various cultural influences it embraces. Through the process of compositional reality, various Brazilian musics mesh - whether it be the ¾ - 6/8 Chamame (accordion), the kinship between North African and Flamenco influences (vocals), or the slightly out of tune renderings of Tom Jobim (melodica). The irony is, however, that the city of Brasilia sets up an eerie distance between the buildings and its culture, yet the curved structures have an unmistakeable sense of musicality. Capriccio Brasilia examines this very paradox".


    Music of Piazzolla Concert, Paris - France
    Contributed supplied by Marie Séité

    On November the 22nd, the Caliente Quartet, a quintet of young musicians featuring Guillaume Hodeau on bandoneon, will perform a concert at l'Europeen, 5 rue Biot, 75017 Paris, at 8:30 p.m.

    The Caliente Quartet is a French group that specialises in Tango Nuevo (concert tango), particularly in the music of Argentinian composer Astor Piazzolla. Last June the Caliente Quartet won the international competition 'Piazzolla Music Award', and on November 2nd they released a CD titled 'Piazzolla: Libertango'.

    For further information email Marie Séité at

    Stockport Accordion Club Concerts, England - UK
    Contributed by Rob Howard

    On November 23rd Stockport Accordion Club's bi-monthly concert, known as a Club Night, features Romano Viazzani as guest artiste. The Stockport AC Band (MD Peter Whiteley) and SAC Orchestra (MD Brian Jenkins) will each perform supporting spots. The concert begins at 8pm, and the venue is the St John Ambulance Brigade HQ, Edgeley Road, Cheadle Heath, Stockport.

    The Stockport AC Band and Orchestra perform in concert on November 26th, from 8pm, at Henbury and Broken Cross Institute, Macclesfield, Cheshire. This annual concert is in aid of the East Cheshire Hospice, and offers the opportunity to see and hear two accordion orchestras perform extended repertoires.

    For further information email

    Music China - International Exhibition for Musical Instruments and Services, Shanghai - China
    Contributed by Holda Paoletti-Kampl

    Virtually every type of musical instrument and MI accessory was on display at the show, whether from the east or west, electric or acoustic, or for classical musicians or rock artists - with the accordion industries from several countries represented. Music China has certainly carved a permanent space for itself in the international trade fair calendar. The show statistics speak for themselves: over 619 exhibitors from 19 countries, 34,000sqm of floor space, and a record 25,156 visitors from 61 countries - 17% more than last year.

    Foreign exhibitors at the event generally stated three major reasons for being at Music China: firstly, to gain exposure for their brands & products, secondly to make direct sales to the market or find a local distributor, and thirdly to get a first-hand look at what is going on in the Chinese market.
    "Music China is gaining momentum," said Betty Heywood (pictured), Director of Trade Fairs for Messe Frankfurt in Shanghai.

    "We have already starting receiving bookings for the 2005 show, and will need to add another half-hall at least to accommodate the demand. It is a very exciting time for the MI industry in China".
    Music China is organized jointly by Messe Frankfurt, INTEX Shanghai Co, and the China Music Instrument Association. The next show is scheduled for 19th to 22nd October 2005, again at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre.

    For more information, email


    Veteran Jazz Musician Pete Jolly Dead at 72, Los Angeles - USA
    Contributed by Peter Soave

    Veteran jazz keyboardist Pete Jolly, who performed on some of television's most popular theme songs and was a regular on the Southern California jazz scene for 40 years, has died at the age of 72. Jolly died Saturday at Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena of complications of bone marrow cancer and irregular heartbeat. The musician, whose composition 'Little Bird' was nominated for a Grammy in 1963, formed the Pete Jolly Trio in 1964 with drummer Nick Martinis and bassist Chuck Berghofer. The group continued to play South California clubs until Jolly was hospitalised in August.

    Jolly, who played piano, organ and accordion, can be heard on such television theme songs as `Get Smart', 'The Love Boat,' `I Spy', 'Mannix', `Dallas' and `MASH,' as well as hundreds of movie soundtracks, including `The Man With the Golden Arm' and `Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid'. His recordings included 1963's `The Sensational Pete Jolly Gasses Everybody', `Strike Up the Band' in 1980 and `Yeah' in 1995. His last album, `Collaboration', was recorded with Swedish pianist Jan Lundgren and released in 2001.

    Born Peter Ceragioli Jr in New Haven, Connecticut, Jolly began playing the accordion at three years of age. At the age of seven, he appeared on the coast-to-coast radio broadcast `Hobby Lobby,' where the announcer mispronounced his name as Pete Jolly. The name stuck! Jolly, whose father was also a musician, began playing in bands in junior high school. Over the years he worked with such jazz fixtures as Buddy DeFranco, Red Norvo, Art Pepper and others.

    Renzo Ruggieri, Teramo Jazz Festival - Italy

    In October 2004 the Renzo Ruggieri jazz group (Paulo Sabatino - piano, Massimo Manzi - drums, Massimo Moriconi - bass) performed during the prestigious jazz festival Interamnia Jazz in Teramo (Italy). Special guest star of the concert was the famous Italian jazz trumpet player Henry Rava.

    Rava and Ruggieri played magnificently in duet together, and also with the rest of the group. A very much-appreciated concert concluded with a standing ovation and many requests for encores.

    Sir Jimmy Shand Recordings Digitally Remastered, Scotland - UK
    Contributed by Jimmy Shand Junior

    Sir Jimmy Shand (1908-2000) had one of the longest and most commercially successful recording careers of any accordionist worldwide, beginning in 1933 and lasting until the turn of the century. He also has the distinction of being the first accordionist to be knighted, by HM Queen Elizabeth in 2000. The Shand family now owns the copyright on most of these recordings, and has had a series of digitally remastered CDs produced - all offering high quality sound reproduction.

    The titles issued to date include: 'Jimmy Shand and His Music', 'Vintage Classics Volume 1', 'Waltzing Through the Years', 'Old Tyme Classics Vol 1', 'Old Tyme Classics Vol 2', and 'Jimmy Shand Plays His Favourite Hymns'. The next CD to be released - in early December - is titled 'Music Wi' a Dunt'. This will be an anthology of Scottish country-dance music recorded by Jimmy Shand in the 1930s, 40s and 50s.

    For further information email Jimmy Shand Junior:

    Mauro Carra Performance, London - UK
    Contributed by Romano Viazzani

    Mauro Carra, who played so brilliantly at the London Accordion Festival in December 2001, was back in London on October 16th 2004 for the Associazione Parmigiani Valceno annual dinner and dance at the London Marriot Hotel, Grosvenor Square. The association is a charitable organisation and was formed many years ago by British-based Italians from the Parma area of northern Italy, and were also one of the main sponsors of the London Accordion Festival. Mauro played a scintillating cabaret set of about 20 minutes which left the 400-strong audience flabbergasted by his technique and included pieces such as 'Florette' (Astier), 'Shocking Valse' (Thomain), 'Acrobatic Mazurka' (Carra), 'Cynthia' (Marocco) and 'Itto' (Gurioli).

    Mauro Carra was brilliantly accompanied on guitar by Marco Tonelli also from Parma. The dance music provided by the wonderful accordionist Claudio Allodi and his ensemble was interspersed with sets by Mauro and Marco. Many accordionists and accordion devotees attended the dinner and dance. Pictured above from left to right are fans Luigi Capella and Claudio Rigoli, (front row) guitarist Marco Tonelli, Star accordionist Mauro Carra, Prof.

    Owen Murray, accordionists Jan Viazzani, Vito Fulgoni, (Back Row) accordionists Armando Guselli, Romano Viazzani and Eddy Jay. Not pictured but present were of course accordionists Claudio and Emilio Allodi and Peter Ronchetti. Romano Viazzani is hoping to tempt Mauro Carra to do a mini UK tour in 2005 so if there are any clubs/festivals interested please email

    Accordion Festival, Torres Vedras - Portugal
    Contributed by Domi Emorine and Roman Jbanov

    Portugal's foremost International Accordion Festival, held in the town of Torres Vedras (about 60 kilometres from Lisbon), took place from November 5th to 12th. The opening ceremony featured the young students from the local accordion school plus diatonic accordionist Kepa Junkera, who performed a program of traditional Portuguese folk music.

    On the 11th November Portuguese classical accordionist Gonçarlo Pescada gave a solo performance of 'Prelude and Fugue', by JS Bach,'Sonata', by D. Scarlatti, 'Adagio', by Albinoni, 'Song for Joss', A. Musichini, 'Oblivion', by A. Piazzolla' and 'Divertimento', by A. Astier. After Pescada, a large audience very well appreciated the Paris-Moscow Duo's performance of French and Russian music.

    The festival closed on November 12th with a concert featuring Portuguese accordionist Joao Frade and his trio, performing jazz from Brazil and Portugal, and French accordionist Jean Louis Noton, whose midi instrument played music from around the world.

    The Paris-Moscow Duo return to Portugal on November 28th to appear at a festival in Besancon, to be held in the Micropolis Park. Also appearing at this festival is Joao Frade.
    A to Z of the Accordion


    "The Carelli accordion has the number 291 on the back, and it is reddish burgundy with a pearl inlay key. Do you have any information on this instrument?'. Email Kelly Hoyle


    Quote of the Week

    Edited Willoughby Walshe

    '' In performing pieces by different composers, choose techniques that suit the composition's specific musical content and style. "

    Find out More… The Art of Bayan Playing or Playing the Accordion Artistically by Friedrich Lips

    CD Review

    A new CD Review of Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International
    Review by Prof. Joan Cochran Sommers


    New & Updated Sites - The 2005 Texas Accordion Association details are now on-line, contributed by Norman Seaton. The progressively minded TAA is constantly looking for new ideas and suggestions. - Details are available of the 2005 ATG (Accordionists and Teachers' Guild Int.) Convention.

    Ángel Luis Castaño - A full list of all the results from the Citta di Castelfidardo International Accordion Competition (October 2004) is now on line.



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