Accordions at Heart of the City Festival

Accordions took over Carnegie Centre
for the Heart of the City Festival event
“Accordion To Immigrants”


Vancouver Squeezebox Circle performed Nov 5th at Carnegie Centre – l-r special guest Renee de la Prade of  “Accordion Babes” from California, Rowan Lipkowits, Ans, Glen, Todd Wong, Franz Gerber, Halke Kingma, (missing from photo is Alan Zisman) – photo Deb Martin

Fantastic accordion concert at Carnegie Centre…. with Vancouver Squeezebox Circle. We alternated solos and group songs. 

The inspiration for the event was to tell the story of 125 years of immigrants to Vancouver's Strathcona and Downtown East Side neighborhoods.

My solos were: St. Louis Blues and JS Bach's Tocatta in D Minor – +
Hungarian Dance #5 (turned into a duet with Halke Kingma whom I had never played
with before, and who hadn't played the song in 15 years.

Best unexpected moment was when Renee de la Prade joined us on stage to sit in – and I asked her if she would like a solo spot.  She stood up to play and sing an Irish whiskey song, then followed up with a Celtic Reel.

“How do you follow that?” I asked the audience, and performed JS Bach's Tocatta in D Minor, which the sound tech added some reverb through the microphone and sound systems to make the performance sound like we were in a big church.  Renee later complimented me on the performance, saying she really liked it.

2nd Best unexpected moment – was acknowledging that Jimi Hendrix had lived in Strathcona / Hogan's Alley at his grandmother Nona Hendrix's home, then having Rowan performing “Purple Haze” with a surprise bridge excerpt of “Star Spangled Banner”

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