Our accordionists: front row – Alan, Todd, Elena; back row – Barbara, Rowan, Caroline, Carney, Richard – photo Deb Martin
It was the first time performance of the Vancouver Squeezebox Circle at the Word on the Street Book & Magazine Fair, and we wanted to make it literary! In between our solo and group songs, our co-MC’s Barbara Adler and Todd Wong read/described books that featured accordions – both adult fiction and children’s books.
We read 2 stanzas from the Robert Service poem “Accordion”, we showed pictures from Jamie Lee Curtis’ children’s book “Is There Really A Human Race”, as well as “Mendel’s Accordion”, and “When Cats Go Wrong.” We closed by briefly describing the Annie Proulx novel “Accordion Crimes”, in which an Italian-made accordion travels across the Atlantic, lands in New Orleans, and soon finds itself playing Zydeco music, then German folk music, as it exchanges hands and cultural groups.
Our repetoire opened with a Sousa March titled “The Liberty Bell” which is more known as “The Monty Python Song”. I performed the first solo, playing J.S. Bach’s Toccata in D Minor. Next we played the “Col. Bogey March” from the movie Bridge Over the River Kwai.
Alan Zisman played a Klezmer song, Barbara sang an original song she wrote, and we all played the Can Can from Orpheus in the Underworld to close.