The American Accordionists' Association (AAA) is excited to announce its 86th anniversary festival will be held in West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, in the Philadelphia area. The event will kick off midday on July 12 and conclude midday on July 14.
The festival will include performances and workshops from guest artists, competitions for students of all ages and proficiency levels, performance opportunities, three festival orchestras, vendors, exhibits, and several food functions.
Some exciting enhancements at this year’s festival will include extended exhibit room hours, festival orchestra repertoire suitable for a wider array of performance levels, consolidated schedule to reduce the total number of hotel nights needed, performance slots for solo and ensemble enthusiasts, and more food functions to promote camaraderie among festival attendees.
Keep your eyes on our AAA website (www.ameraccord.com) for hotel discount code, guest artist releases, and other festival announcements.
Frank Busso Jnr. AAA President
Join us live to help celebrate the 85th anniversary of the American Accordionists' Association which will be held at the Marriott Philadelphia West in Conshohocken, PA, July 12-16, 2023.
Visit https://www.marriott.com/events/start.mi?id=1678315148565&key=GRP to book your hotel room today! The discounted room block deadline is June 26, 2023. The rate and room type can sell out prior to the deadline, so book your room early to secure the lowest rate.
The importance of reserving a hotel room at the AAA’s official conference hotel, the Marriott Philadelphia West: The AAA makes every effort to keep your expenses at the conference as low as possible. We work hard to negotiate the best hotel rates and to keep conference registration fees as low as possible, even as expenses rise annually. The AAA is able to offer high-quality conferences in desirable locations because we reserve a significant number of hotel rooms. If you choose to stay at another property, the official hotel room block is smaller, making it more difficult for the AAA to gain favorable hotel space at reasonable prices for future meetings.
View the most current version of the festival schedule here: 2023AAASchedule.pdf
Use the following form to register for the festival and to purchase tickets: 2023AAARegistration.pdf
Payments can be made by check or online through the AAA’s secure checkout page: AAA Store
One of the festival’s flagship events is the Gala Banquet on Saturday night. This year’s banquet will feature the 2023 AAA Festival Orchestra conducted by Joan Cochran Sommers, The United States Air Force Strolling Strings, and the Lifetime Achievement Award presentation to Frank Busso Sr.
To advertise in the Gala Banquet journal, including special messages to Lifetime Achievement Award recipient Frank Busso Sr, please use the following link: 2023 Banquet Journal Advertisement
We also have some ticket/hotel packages available that may be of interest to you: 2023 AAA Banquet Package.
Would you like to send a personal message to the AAA? Do you have a business that might be of interest to accordion enthusiasts? We invite you to advertise in the Festival Program Journal: 2023AAA-Advertiser.pdf
If you would like to sell or exhibit merchandise during the festival, please complete an exhibitor registration form here: 2023AAA-Exhibitor.pdf
After two years of virtual competition, we are excited to return to live competitions for students of all ages and abilities! Solos, duets, ensembles, and bands. Competition rules can be found online at 2023AAARules.pdf. Entry forms must be submitted by June 12, 2023 and can be found here: 2023AAAEntry.pdf
June 12 - Competition entry form submission deadline
June 16 - Advertisements in Festival Program Journal due date
June 16 - Exhibitor/Vendor registration due date
June 23 - Registrations and ticket purchases deadline
June 23 - Advertisements in Gala Banquet/Lifetime Achievement Award Journal due date
June 26 - Deadline to book your hotel room at the official festival hotel at discounted rate
We are sure we speak for all when we say accordionists cannot wait to get back together - in person! - to celebrate our beloved instrument. And speaking of accordions, make sure you bring yours along to play in the 2023 Festival Orchestra led by world-renowned conductor, Joan Cochran Sommers!
Grayson Masefield (New Zealand) will will join us for performances and workshops. Very personable and well-spoken, Grayson has won and been laureate at over a dozen international accordion competitions around the world in classical, entertainment, and digital categories. He is currently the instrumental music teacher for accordion at the University of Auckland, New Zealand.
Another special guest performer will be accordion legend Joey Miskulin (USA). Inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 2018 for his extraordinary accomplishments with the piano accordion, and a recent recipient of the AAA's Lifetime Achievement Award, Joey continues to delight listeners with his "flying fingers" and ability to engage audiences.
Looking for even more entertainment? Look no further than Mario Tacca, past AAA champion and AAA Artist in Residence, who will perform as a soloist at Friday night's gala concert, and with famed vocalist Mary Mancini at our Thursday night dinner.
Several accordion orchestras are already slated to perform, including the Accordion Pops Orchestra conducted by Al Terzo, the Westmont Philharmonia Accordion Orchestra conducted by Joanna Darrow, and the Busso Festival Orchestra conducted by Frank Busso Jr.
Conducting this year's Youth Orchestra will be Joanna Darrow who has dedicated her entire life to performing, teaching and promoting the accordion. She has performed several times with the Philadelphia Orchestra, and performed all over Europe, for over 30 years, with her accordion teacher/husband, the late Stanley Darrow.
The United States Air Force Strolling Strings, with AAA President Frank Busso Jr. on accordion, will perform at our Saturday night banquet. Also at the banquet, we will present our coveted Lifetime Achievement Award to longtime AAA Board member Frank Busso Sr. Frank has been an educator, performer, conductor, and all-around ambassador of the accordion for decades.
Keep checking www.ameraccord.com for announcements of additional performers, workshop presenters, events, and registration information!
To read more about Joan Cochran Sommers, Frank Busso Sr., Joey Miskulin, and to learn more about the events that led to the formation of the AAA, please see the articles listed below. Click here for many other articles about AAA History.
I am sure I speak for all when I say that accordionists cannot wait to get back together, in person, again SOON!! The members of the AAA Governing Board are no exception.
As we are enthusiastically planning the 2023 AAA Festival, we are very excited to announce that the AAA will be honoring long-time AAA Board member, Frank Busso, Sr., at this event with the 2023 AAA Lifetime Achievement Award.
Frank has faithfully served the AAA as Treasurer, Vice-President, President (1981, 1992-94), and has also chaired many committees including the annual national festivals, and the Young Artists Concert Series. He held the position of the Comptroller of the AAA for many years. For decades, Frank has been an educator, performer, conductor and all-around ambassador of the accordion.
View the feature article from the 2017 AAA Festival Journal now online at: “Spotlight on Frank Busso”. It is an enjoyable, heartwarming and enlightening biography of a man whose life revolved around his love of the accordion, the national accordion community, and his family.
You might ask, “What has happened since 2017?” One delightful bit of news: Frank’s twin granddaughters, Julianna and Francesca, are now studying the accordion with their father, Frank Busso, Jr. All of the Busso grandchildren are now accordionists! Let’s hope we can hear the “Busso Octet” perform for us at the 2023 AAA Festival!
L to R: Christina Busso Lammers, Alexander Lammers, Frank Busso, Sr., TV reporter from Washington, DC, Caroline Lammers, Frank Busso, Jr., and Nicholas Busso at the 2018 AAA Festival, Alexandria, VA.
2024 AAA 86th Festival, July 12-14, 2024 West Conshohocken, PA in the Philadelphia Area
2024 Elsie M. Bennett Accordion Composition Competition. Information and entry: Entry closing date, April 12, 2024.
2023 AAA 85th Anniversary Festival Daily Reports
July 12-16, 2023
AAA History Articles
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