Hohner GmbH has released a 150 Years Jubilee DVD where they collected "a lot of impressions and pictures of that eventful year".
The largest number of participants was at the 150th Anniversary Weekend Celebration in Trossingen, Germany, where the Guinness World Records on September 9th 2007 for the "largest harmonica ensemble" involving over 3,898 participants was the culmination of a weekend of celebration. Full Report. Guinness World Record Certificate
The DVD (cover left) also includes a number of music artistes and is available from Hohner GmbH or their representatives for 10 Euro. Hohner sent copies to many who supported their Jubilee events saying "we hope that you will enjoy the DVD and that the motto ‘Enjoy Music - Play Hohner’ will continue to inspire you to support making music...”
This three day festival of music and competitions included competitors from China, Australia and New Zealand. The top category solo winner was Grayson Masefield freshly back from his full time studies in France with Frederic Deschamps.
A full report of the event in English plus all results is online.
ATG Festival features Alexander Shirunov, Nashville - USA
This year's festival will feature an outstanding array of virtuoso accordionists including those from the US as well as Russia. In addition to the much anticipated performance of Alexander Shirunov, the ATG festival will provide other highlights including the performance of the complete ‘Concerto No. 1 in g minor’ composed by the late Anthony Galla-Rini, performed by ATG Board Member and recent winner of the AAA Maddalena Belfiore International Competition for female accordionists, Betty Jo Simon (soloist) accompanied by members of the ATG Board of Directors. Additional guests include Jeff Lisenby, Murl Allen Sanders, Amy Jo Sawyer, Mary Tokarski, Donna Ray and Karen Yatuzis and Die Musik Meisters.
For complete information such as advertising pricing, tourist information for Nashville, Festival Orchestra and competition information, guest artistes, workshop presenters and ticket order forms please visit www.accordions.com/atg
Festival Internazionale Fisarmonica, Castelfidardo - Italy
The 33rd Festival Internazionale Fisarmonica takes place in Castelfidardo from October 13th to 19th. This festival includes solo, duet, ensemble and orchestra competitions that attract entries from different parts of Europe and beyond. Each evening there are concerts, a highlight of which will be Frank Marocco and Simone Zanchini performing together on the evening of June 11th.
The organisers promise that this year’s festival will feature more public events than ever before, with a range of entertainment and activities for people of all ages.
Following the highly successful NAO UK Championships 2008 in April, the biggest accordion event ever held in Blackpool, attracting a record number of entries (over 450), plus huge attendance at the competition, television and radio coverage, the NAO are delighted to announce that next year the event will return and again be held at the Metropole Hotel and on the North Pier. The event will take place from April 24th to 26th 2009.
With nearly 400 people staying at the Metropole this year, with the hotel already nearly fully booked for 2009, a similar package has already been agreed with its sister hotel - The Savoy. International guests from Germany and France have already confirmed attendance. A number of new events will also be included in the championship weekend.
As a result of the event this year several of our UK Champions will be featured on the UK TV Channel 4, the Paul O’ Grady Show, later this month.
The NAO is also hosting the prestigious CIA Coupe Mondiale in Glasgow Scotland in October 2008. Full details are on the website www.coupemondiale.org
This year’s ‘Tag der Harmonika’ (Harmonica Day) was held from May 23rd to 25th in Salzburg, which also will host the Coupe Mondiale in 2014. The competition included categories for accordion soloists, duos, ensembles and orchestras, for harmonica as well as for the “Steirische Harmonika” (Styrian Harmonica), which has become very popular.
Compared to former competitions it can be said that the interest in the instrument is constantly growing and the level of performance improving strongy too.
The possibility to study the accordion at all major conservatories and universities of music as well as the work of the newly formed executive committee of the Austrian Confederation of Accordionists HVÖ is showing very positive results.
The festival started with two come together-events with performances of ‘MagArt Trio’ (jazz standards on the accordion) and ‘Die Resonanz’ (cross over of Balkan, Tzigani and Klezmer styles on the Styrian harmonica).
Additionally, the organisers of the festival had the idea to make an attempt on a world record: ‘Most reeds ever played together’ for the Guinness World Records.
On the occasion of the arrival of the famous Russian duo ‘Bayan Mix’, led by Sergei Voitenko and Dimitri Khramkov, in France, Claude Cavagnolo and his wife gave a wonderful reception on their property near Paris.
Present were two of the greatest stars of the French accordion scene, Yvette Horner and Marcel Azzola.
Participating were many artistes from the Paris region as Jean-Marc Torchy, Isabelle Durand, Ludovic Beier, Philippe Servain, Sergio Tomassi, Marc Berthoumieux, joined by Jean-Louis Noton and Samuel Garcia on a visit to Paris, and Roman Jbanov - indispensable as French/ Russian translator - also fundamental for a significant penetration of Cavagnolo into the Russian market.
A successful party with the participation of Fred Méla, the leader of ‘Compagnons de la Chanson’ having become a neighbour, and Michel Geiss, who has participated in all major concerts by Jean-Michel Jarre. All accordionists were also pleased to meet accordion tuner Thiérry Duchène.
The Russian television was also present to capture this great moment of conviviality.
Of course many other artistes were unable to be present for various reasons (valid) including the celebration of Mothers’ Day!
‘Accordion Festival 2008’ took place at the Espace culturel du parc, Place Maurice Nilès, Drancy, near Paris, from May 23rd to 25th, directed by Sergio Tomassi. The theme this year was the contribution of Russian Bayan players and composers to the development of the accordion, the first time that an event focusing on the history of 100 years of the Bayan has taken place in France.
For the opening of the festival, the accordion orchestra of the music school of Drancy played some pieces for the first part. In the second, Ukrainian Bogdan Nesterenko, a winner of the Grand-Prix of Roubaix in 2007 (www.sur3notes.fr), from Kharkov, interpreted ‘Winter’ from Vivaldi’s ‘4 Seasons’, as well as music by Kukuzenko, Derbenko, Vlasov, and arrangements of Russian folk songs. Roman Jbanov, one of the festival organisers, was next, performing music by Russian composers such as: Na Un Kin, Semionov, Novikov, Derbenko, Sourkov, Panitski, as well as the French composer, with whom he has worked, Franck Angelis.
Russian bayan maestro Friedrich Lips, performing the compositions of Gubaidulina, Beulman, Sourkov, Rossini, and Schubert, closed the first day of the festival.
The program of the second day was very eclectic. The well-known composer Yevgenii Derbienko played solo and in duet with his talented pupil Pavel Ukhanov some of his numerous compositions on the Russian traditional instrument Garmoshka. Their performance was very theatrical, and from the beginning, the atmosphere in the hall was very joyful.
The concert continued with Russian composer and accordionist Viacheslav Semionov in duet with his wife Natalia, who made magnificent sounds playing the Domra. They played very emotionally, musically and brilliantly arrangements of traditional Russian pieces.
The duo Paris-Moscow closed the first part with the waltz ‘Boutade’, by Joss Baseli and Joe Rossi, who were students of Medard Ferrero (who lived in Drancy), the famous accordionist and teacher of the 1930s, who also wrote the first accordion tutor book in France, still indeed studied by numerous French accordionists. Then, Roman and Domi have interpreted the Russian music of Koniaev, Shalaiev, and the composition written for them by Franck Angelis, ‘Paris-Moscow’.
The 2nd part was more varied with the quintet of Romanian accordionist Emy Dragoï, playing in the gypsy-jazz style. The day was closed by the duet Bayan-Mix, with Sergeï Voitenko and Dmitri Khramkov with their modern Cavagnolo instruments to play techno music.
The public greatly enjoyed this extraordinary festival! The Russian national TV programme ‘Cultura’ were present to make a historic film about the centenary of the Bayan.
We hope, that the other countries are going to celebrate this jubilee also.
Great success for "MuseiinMusica”, a two-day event in the teatre Astra dedicated to the Museums of Recanati and Castelfidardo that keep in memory many unique pieces of musical instruments, which are intimately bound to the tradition of these 2 cities: guitar and accordion.
The evening of Thursday May 29th was devoted to the accordion: on stage the Philharmonic Orchestra Marche, under the direction of maestro Roberto Molinelli who has specially composed an as yet unpublished work for classical accordion and bandoneon, performed by the soloists Mirco Patarini (classical) www.strumentiemusica.com and Mario Stefano Pietrodarchi (bandoneon). There was a world premiere also for the composition of the Master Scarpone: ‘Concertpiece for bandoneon and string orchestra’. During the evening all volunteer employees of the museum www.accordions.com/museum of Castelfdardo received honouring by the city Mayor Mirco Soprani and Museum director Vincenzo Canali (pictured).
The 47th Annual Spring Concert of the University of Missouri - Kansas City (UMKC) Community Accordion Orchestra under the direction of Joan C. Sommers will take place on Sunday, June 8th. This free concert will be held at 2.30pm at White Recital Hall at the UMKC Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City.
The program this year features works including the ‘Concerto No. 1 in g minor’, by Anthony Galla-Rini (Betty Jo Simon, soloist), ‘Metropolitan Suite’, by Hans-Günther Kölz, ‘Polonaise in Bb’, by Schubert, ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’, by John Williams (arr. Eddie Blasco), a Richard Rogers Portrait, arranged by Joan Sommers, ‘Ombo’, by Willard Palmer, ‘The Syncopated Clock’, by Leroy Anderson, ‘Route 66’, arranged by Hans-Günther Kölz, and more.
In addition to its regular concerts at the University, the orchestra has made guest appearances at national festivals and other important engagements throughout the United States and abroad, including the recent appearance at the Alexandria, VA based CIA 61st Coupe Mondiale World Accordion Championships (below) and at the famed Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington DC.
Russian accordionist Alexander Korbakov was born in 1962 in Kamyshin on the river Volga. He studied at the conservatory in St Petersburg, where he still lives and works, and plays with the Russian State Concert Orchestra, with small ensembles, and as an accompanist.
He has made regular tours of the UK, Ireland and Germany, and performs a varied repertoire that includes favourite accordion pieces from around the World, Russian Folk melodies, and classical works written for the accordion by Russian composers, and transcriptions of music by Bach, Beethoven, etc. Some items are played on a Saratov concertina.
Alexander Korbakov’s tour dates include:
June 7th, 7.30pm – All Saints Church, Okehampton, Devon
8th, 2pm – White Horse Accordion Club, Westbury, Wiltshire
10th, 7.30pm – North Staffs AC, Audley Theatre, Staffordshire; email firstname.lastname@example.org
11th, 8pm – Stockport Accordion Club, Woodley Methodist Church, Stockport; email email@example.com
13th, 7.30pm – St Giles Church, Hartington, Derbyshire
14th, 8pm – Soar Valley Accordion Club, Rothley Village Hall, Leicestershire
18th, 7.30pm – Horningsea Church, Cambridge
19th, 7.30pm – Harlow Accordion Club, Links Social Club, Essex; email firstname.lastname@example.org
20th, 7pm – Guildford Accordion Club, Village Hall, Ripley, Surrey; email email@example.com
Finnish accordionist Mika Väyrynen will present a series of concerts in Portugal from June 2nd to 9th. During this tour, Mika will perform concerts in Lisbon and Castelo Branco, where he will also give a two day Master Class.
From June 11th to 15th, Mika will perform at the famed Loviisa Sibelius-Festival in his native Finland. A regular guest artiste at this festival, Mika will perform on both accordion and bandoneon in a concert with Norwegian violinist Atle Sponberg (on a concert called Paris-Buenos Aires), and in another concert performing ‘Bagatelles’, by Anton Dvorak.
The long established accordion festival held at Haven Holiday Park, Caister, Norfolk, moves 3 miles down to road to Seacroft Holiday Village, November 14th to 17th. The new venue offers excellent facilities, full board, full table service, and a choice of accommodation. The chief guest artistes will be the Lars Ek Hot Trio, from Sweden, with many more guests to be announced.
‘Accordions International 2008’ continues a popular tradition of pre-Christmas festivals in the East Anglia region founded in 1986 by the late Malcolm Gee. The present organiser is Heather Smith.
The 2008 Las Vegas International Accordion Convention will be held September 29 - October 2, 2008 at the Gold Coast Hotel, in Las Vegas, NV.
The 2008 Honorary Conductor will be Carl Fortina with featured guest artists including Alexander Sevastian, Dick Contino, Art Van Damme. Alexander Sevasitan is appearing as a special guest as a prize donated by the Las Vegas International Accordion Convention to the winner of the 60th Anniversary CIA Coupe Mondiale World Accordion Championships held in Alexandria, VA in 2007.
Bulgarian accordionist Veronika Todorova and her band will give a guest performance, performing Tango, jazz and Balkan music, in the music pavilion of the Palm Tree Garden (Palmengarten) in Frankfurt, Siesmayerstraße 61, on Friday June 13th, 7.30pm. Todorova will play pieces from her current CD ‘Rosso’ as well as compositions by Renzo Ruggieri, Chic Corea and Riccardo Galimi.