Accordions Worldwide "The Squeeze"
13th August 1999
- Weekly news from around the world-
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Taking the music to the people! In the last few months we have received a number of news reports of accordion concerts held in very unusual places such as trams, folk trains, on islands and even performances on aeroplanes. These very different exposures of the accordion can only increase the number of people who hear what a great versatile instrument the accordion is. How about letting us know if you have performed a concert in an unusual venue? Emails can be sent to:

Wayne Knights Webmaster

Click here to visit the Strasser Harmonikas site!


Click here to visit the Strasser Harmonikas site!
International Chamber Music Festival - Denmark

Norwegian/Danish classical accordionist Frode Andersen is a guest soloist at the International Chamber Music Festival which will take place in Esbjerg, Denmark from August 14th to 21st. Frode graduated from the Copenhagen Royal Academy accordion class in 1995, continuing his studies with Geir Draugsvoll and James Crabb. He regularly performs in Denmark and other Nordic countries as well as Germany and Holland. He recently recorded Norholms well known "Sonata" op. 41 on the Danish label "Kontrapunkt" which will be released soon.

Frode will perform several concerts during the festival. His program will include the premiere performance of "Butterfly" (for accordion and wind quintet) written by Danish composer Karsten Fundal, 4 tangos by Astor Piazzolla (with accordion, piano, violin, vibraphone and doublebass), and "Metal Work" (for accordion and percussion) by Finnish composer Magnus Lindberg).

Frode will also play the accordion and harmonium with the "The Esbjerg Ensemble". They will perform Arnold Schöenberg´s arrangement of Gustav Mahler´s "Lieder eines farenden Gesellen" with soprano and special guest soloist Dame Margaret Price.

For further information phone: + 45 7512 5599


Summer Concert Series - Spain

During August the Classical Accordion Duo formed by Angel Luis Castaño and Raquel Ruiz will perform a series of five concerts in the Segovia region, supported by the Diputación Cultural of Segovia. Performances will be given in Cuellar, Aguilafuente, Pedraza, Castillejo and Arcones. For further information email:


Calgary Folk Festival - Canada

The 1999 Calgary Folk Music Festival was held from July 22nd to 25th in Prince's island Park, Calgary, Alberta. The festival included jam sessions, celtic, blues, bluegrass, folk, roots and country music on six stages as well as workshops on a variety of subjects. Performers included "Cascabulho" (accordion based forro music group from Brazil), Joaquin Diaz (Dominican Republic), "Scatter the Mud" (group including accordion, highland pipes, whistle, vocals, mandolin and bodhran), "The Kamkars" and Simon Thoumire (concertina).


Tango Music - Switzerland

Contributed by Jean-Claude Pouly

"Trio Argentino de Tango" which includes Marcello Mercandante (bandoneon), Gustavo Battaglia (guitar) and Andres Serafini (bass) will perform tango music by Carlos Gardel and Astor Piazolla at Moods Jazz Restaurant in Zurich, on August 17th. For further information email:


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International Music Festival Concert Series - Austria

Stefan Hussong & Julius BergerContributed by Dr Herbert Scheibenreif

German accordionist Stefan Hussong performed a concert with cellist Julius Berger during the "Musikwochen" (musical weeks) held in the chapter of Millstatt (Carinthia, Austria). Their program included pieces by I. Yun, S. Gubaidulina, J.S. Bach, T. Hosokawa and A. Piazzolla.

Stefan studied in Trossingen, Toronto and Tokyo and has gained prizes at numerous international competitions. He has worked with such composers as S. Gubaidulina, K. Huber, T. Hosokawa and A. Hölszky and recorded 18 CD's. His concert appearances all over the world, have included solo performances and joint concerts with well known music ensembles including the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, Ensemble Modern, Klangforum Wien, Tokyo Harmonia Chamber Orchestra and others.


Footloose Festival - UK

Contributed by Dot & Dave Wheeler

The Footloose Festival will be held on October 9th at the Fishpond Hotel, Matlock Bath, UK. The festival will include "Cajun & Rock'n'Roll" workshops. Popular group M_C_Cajun (which includes accordionist Paul Asher) will perform on the Bandstand as part of the Venetian Nights celebrations.

For further information email:


Tango for Four Concert - Finland

Finnish quartet "Tango for Four" will perform a concert in Hämeenlinna (the town where Jean Sibelius was born) on August 23rd. The quartet consists of Mika Väyrynen (accordion), Jaakko Kuusisto (violin), Kalle Elkomaa (piano) and Janne Wessman (bass).

At the end of August a new CD by the quartet will be released by Finlandia Records (a division of Warner Chappel). For further information email:


Japanese Accordion Competitions - Japan

Contributed by Toru Katou

The Japan Accordion Association (JAA) will hold their 2nd "JAA Accordion Contest" on August 29th at the Yotsuya Ward Citizens' Hall, Tokyo from 10 am. Contestants range in age from 6 to 67 years old, with participants from overseas.

Competition judges include Stefan Hussong (Germany), Noboru Emori and Chikaie Yoshida. Guest accordionists include the Director of the JAA, Hideaki Yamaoka. For further information email:


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Celebrating 50 Years of Accordions in the Rockies - USA

Contributed by Kevin Friedrich

Last weekend the Rocky Mountain Accordion Society celebrated its 50th Anniversary during its annual competition and festival to a standing room only crowd in Denver. The event featured competitions for all ages (including adults), as well as concerts, an 80 piece mass band, a banquet and an open mike session. Entertainers included the YMA Denver Intermediate Show Band (which delighted the audience with a re-enactment of the Willy Wonker Chocolate Factory) and the YMA Springs Prep Band 'Aliens' who entertained the earthlings playing a "2001 Space Odysee!"

RMAS President, Alice Aman paid special tribute to teacher Harold Krieger, who had attended and provided students at all 50 annual festivals! Special thanks were then given to Alice for her many years of contribution to the accordion field and a Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Mike Aman (teacher and director of Monarch Accordions) for his contribution to the accordion field as a musician, artist and teacher and competition results were as follows:

Open Virtuoso Solo: Stacey Yamada
Camille ChristianOpen Virtuoso Orchestra: YMA Sprints Virtuoso Orchestra (Directed by Kim Christian and gained a perfect score of 100 marks)
RMAS King: Soum Panda
RMAS Queen: Amanda Kuderka
RAMS Peanut King (5/6 years old): Marlon Bennett
RMAS Peanut Queen (5/6 years old): Camille Christian


Former CIA President Passes Away - Germany

Contributed by Gerald Ryan

The recent death of Dr Karl Albrecht Majer, former President of the CIA and a leading European patent attorney came as a shock to many people. Dr Majer was an intellectual giant but a very unassuming person, who was legal advisor for the Hohner Corporation and President of the CIA for many years.

An interesting obituary about the life of this important man is listed on the new Accordions Worldwide "Memorials" site.


"Celebrity Interviews"

Questions for the "Celebrity Interview" with Vladimir Zubitsky, Russian composer, teacher and artist have now closed. The interview will be published on August 18th.

Please send your questions for our "Celebrity Interview" with famous accordion personality Faithe Deffner, director of Ernest Deffner Publications, Titano Accordion Company, PanCordion Inc., Deiro Publications and Pagani Publications to Moderator Wallace Liggett by August 18th. This interview will be published on August 24th.


"Accordonda" in Italy

Italian accordionist Beppe Turletti performed a solo concert recently in Isera (Trento Province) as part of a festival organized by Davide Paolini (journalist from the 'Il Sole - 24 ore' newspaper). This was followed on August 7th by a duo "Accordonda" concert (which includes hurdy-gurdy player Silvio Orlandi) in Roddino (Cuneo). Their next concert will be in Barbianello (Pavia) on August 15th.

For further information email:


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Successful White House Performance - USA

Emter Family button AccordionistsContributed by Roger Emter

The "Emter Family Button Accordionists" performed a successful concert on August 3rd on the East Lawn of the White House, Washington DC. The family of six accordionists represented the state of North Dakota, performing a varied program which included "Please Turn out the Light", traditional polkas and waltzes and some gospel pieces.

The same evening, they performed on the Millennium Stage at the prestigious John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. Both concerts were well received by the general audience. U.S. Senator Byron Dorgan was present at the concerts and spoke at each performance.


Open Air Concert - Denmark

Contributed by Arne Morsing

Danish group "Thisted Harmonikaorkester" performed at an open air concert in their hometown of Thisted on August 8th. The group have taken part in three accordion festivals in Denmark during the summer and are currently working on a new CD which is due for release in November. The CD (which will be their 3rd) will include a mix of original and popular songs

For further information email:


German Music Publisher at Festival - China

Urlich SchmullingContributed by Li Cong

Guest speaker Urlich Schmülling (Director, Intermusik Newspaper and Karthause-Schmülling Musikverlage of Germany) attended the 6th Beijing International Accordion Festival from July 28th to August 3rd.

On August 1st Mr Schmülling gave a lecture to Chinese accordionists and students on modern free bass accordion music. He also presented to the students the large range of accordion music and CD's available from his businesses.

On August 2nd Yan Guo Li (Vice President of the Beijing Accordion Association), Guo Yu Guang, Li Cong (President of the Shanghai Accordion Association) and Wang Cong Yu accompanied Mr Schmülling on a sightseeing tour to the 2,300 meter high Ling Mountain.

Over 300 accordionists from throughout China, Russia, Italy, Germany and France attended the festival. In addition to the competition and workshops, concerts featuring different musical styles were held. Russian accordionists Yuri Shishkin and Vladimir Zubitsky performed well received concerts and special concerts were held to celebrate the 70th birthdays of accordionists Zhang Zi Qiang and Li Yu Qiu.

Competition winners:

Children's Class A: Cui Hui Zhen
Children's Class B: Chen Qian
Teenager Class B: Fang Xuan
Adult Class: Roman Tourov (Russia)
Children's Ensemble: Zhou Si Yu, Wang Yu Teng, Guo Jia Xi, Cao Liang
Adult Ensemble: Vladivostok Music College Trio (Russia)
Orchestra: Beijing Wei Liang Accordion School Orchestra


Mid Winter Performance - New Zealand

Contributed by Christine Adams

While Europe is enjoying "mid summer" performances, it is the opposite season "down under" in New Zealand. Four young accordionists aged from 5 to 11 years entertained at a "mid winter" concert on August 9th in the seaside town of Orewa.


Click here to visit the Strasser Harmonikas site!
Café Concert - Japan

Contributed by Toru Katou

The "Revival of the Music Cafe Musica" concert series is currently underway until August 31st in "Aster Plaza", Naka Ward, Hiroshima. "Musica" is the name of a cafe that became the center of musical culture in Hiroshima from 1945 and throughout the 1950s when Hiroshima was under reconstruction.

On August 7th, 14th and 21st, accordionists will take part in "The Ring of Songs" musical event which will be held at this café. For further information phone the Municipal Office of Hiroshima City: + 81 82-504-2139


"Poozies" Tour UK

Contributed by Jan Lucas

Popular group the "Poozies" will tour Great Britain from September 10th to October 3rd. The group which includes Karen Tweed (accordion and vocals), Patsy Seddon & Mary MacMaster (harps and vocals) and Kate Rusby (guitar, violin and vocals) will play concerts at the Ashcroft Arts Centre in Fareham, Swanage Folk Festival, Bridgwater Arts Centre, Telford Oakengates Theatre, Cecil Sharpe House in London, Countess of Huntingdon Hall in Worcester and the Accrington Town Hall.

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

For further information email:


Polish Accordionist Visits USA

Polish accordionist Jaroslaw Grodowski will tour USA in late August. During his tour Jaroslaw will perform in the Button Box Shop, Amherst, Massachusetts.


Summer Camp - Japan

Contributed by Toru Katou

The Ongaku Center Accordion Branch in Tokyo will hold a summer camp school at "Ikoi no Mura Yatsugatake" in Mt. Yatsugatake, Yamanashi Prefecture from August 21st to 23rd. For further information phone: + 81 3 3208-8377


Click here to visit the Strasser Harmonikas site!
Accordion Demonstration - Australia

Elizabeth Jones, (Director of Music Education Maroubra School) was asked by the Liverpool Rotary Club, Sydney, to give a talk about the accordion and a demonstration on August 9th.

The club found the talk highly informative and asked Elizabeth to return on August 17th to play at their annual function to an expected audience of over 300 people.


German Orchestra Tours USA

Contributed by Hans-Cornelius Petersen

The Accordion Orchestra "Diemelspatzen" (Germany) traveled to USA from July 6th to 21st. The 39 member orchestra performed their first USA concert in Yorkville, New York (with the New York German consul in attendance).

This was followed by several concerts at a German Alps-Festival in temperatures of 40 degrees Celsius! This concert included a specially prepared program of German folk music.

Towards the end of their tour the orchestra gave a two hour open air concert in Cairo Park, performing music ranging from original pieces to songs from films, musicals as well as folk music. Because of this concert, the city of Cairo now plan to build a stage in the park for future events.


New Sites Information on the Caister Accordion Weekend held in November in the UK. Information about accordions manufactured by the O.R.A. Company in Italy.


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