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November 29, 2009


Meeting Notes

Jim Vandelly was the headliner at the November 15 meeting, and as usual he did not disappoint, performing some of our old favorites as well as some pieces we hadn’t heard before. Jim first took up the piano accordion 60 years ago, and the bayan 15 years ago, and he is more than at home on both. Lee Paulson and Vic Aijala provided the warm-up act, performing two pieces they had been practicing for the holiday concert. Unfortunately Vic’s plans suddenly changed, taking him to Florida during the holiday concert. Anyway, they were a delight as well.

The meeting took place at VFW Post 9274 in Falls Church because the church where we usually meet had another event that day. Everyone seemed to agree that the VFW worked out well; however, we had to pay rent there: $300. People were generous with the donations, so we defrayed that fee by about $60, but obviously the VFW is not an option we can use often. If anyone has other ideas – such as a church or school that will charge less than $300 (preferably a lot less) – please let us know.

After Jim’s mini-concert the WMAS Holiday Concert Orchestra and Potomac Ensemble rehearsed. PLEASE NOTE THAT ANOTHER REHEARSAL IS SCHEDULED FOR THIS SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 29, AT 6:45 PM AT SLEEPY HOLLOW UNITED METHODIST.

Holiday Concert

The Holiday Concert is coming up fast: 4 pm on Sunday, December 13. If you are playing in the orchestra, please attend all the rehearsals. Besides the one this Sunday we will be rehearsing the following Sunday, December 6, at 6:45 pm at Sleepy Hollow UMC, and at 2 pm December 13, just before the concert. Even if you are a sightreading whiz and virtuoso soloist, please do not plan to show up and play in the concert without participating in the rehearsals. Playing with a group involves different skills from playing solo, for example following (i.e., watching) the conductor and playing according to the plan (i.e. dynamics, roadmap) worked out with the group during the rehearsals.

If you would like to play a solo (or duet, etc.) in the concert, please let us know so we can include you on the written program. So far the following people have signed up: Nancy Leonard, Yimeng Huang, Silvia Eberly and students, Dick Dangel, Phil Fox, Mark Nejako, and Joan Grauman/JoAnn Pankow.

A potluck will follow the concert. Please sign up to bring a dish, and help with setup starting at 2 pm, and cleanup afterwards. It takes many hands to bring off an event like this, so please pitch in. Thanks!


Article on Dr. Carmelo Pino

An article on the life and work of Dr. Carmelo Pino, by Joan Grauman, will be posted on www.accordionusa.com on December 1. This was the feature article in the 2009 AAA Festival journal this past July. Dr. Pino has lived and performed in the Washington, DC area for most of his life and was on the stage of the Kennedy Center, as an accordion soloist, under the batons of 12 conductors, for more than 40 years.

Accordionist Needed in Lexington, VA

I'm Synthia Smout, the University-Shenandoah Symphony Orchestra Manager. Washington and Lee University (Lexington, VA) will be putting on the musical Chicago in March 2010. I'm trying to find a professional-quality accordion/keyboard player to perform in the show. We need someone who can play both keyboard and accordion. The musician would be involved in rehearsals/performances every evening March 4 to March 14 with only Sunday, March 7, off. The fee would be $750 plus $150 gas stipend. Do you know of anyone you can recommend who would be good for this position who doesn't live at too far a distance to come so many days in a row? If not, do you have any other ideas how I could find such a musician?

I appreciate any help you can give.

Thank you,

Synthia Smout, smouts@embarqmail.com
University-Shenandoah Symphony Orchestra Washington and Lee University