I’m happy to announce that on March 18, the Capitol City Symphony will be premiering a jaunty and nostalgic 12-minute piece of mine called My Own Personal Rocketship. Maestra Victoria Gau will conduct. There’s a second piece of mine on the program: one movement of my symphony, The Blue Chevrolet. It’s a family concert complete with pre-show instrument petting zoo, so if you’ve got kiddos in DC to entertain that day, I hope you’ll zoom by. It’s at the Atlas Performing Arts Center, with shows at 4 and 6 pm.
This sounds like the start of an accordion joke: My accordion seemed to be out of tune. But seriously, it did. So I searched the internet for help and came up with Busso’s Accordion Shop in Alexandria, Virginia. Now, I must admit that my accordion playing is limited. I play it like a piano with my right hand, and have never really mastered all the buttons on the lefthand side—or at least not so far. So I was somewhat nervous going into the bellows of the beast, but it turned out that the shop’s proprietor, Frank Busso, is a non-judgmental champ of a guy. He confirmed that my accordion was, indeed, out of tune and needed fixing. While I was at the shop, I got the chance to play a really good instrument: a top-of-the-line Titano. I also added a destination to my travel bucket list: Castelfidardo, Italy, the international capital of accordion builders. I hope that when I finally get there, they will welcome me as a brother.