TEXAS FOLKLIFE’S 2011 BIG SQUEEZE ACCORDION CONTEST
Texas Folklife and the Latino Cultural Center announce that for a second consecutive year, the annual Big Squeeze accordion contest for up-and-coming Texas musicians is being presented in Dallas. The Big Squeeze will come to Dallas on Saturday, March 19, and will be hosted by the Latino Cultural Center.
The Big Squeeze contest is open to Texas accordionists 21 years of age and younger. Contestants will be judged by a panel of esteemed music professionals on song interpretation, technical skill, originality, execution and stage presence. Contestants may register on-site or in advance by calling Texas Folklife at (512) 441-9255 or by visiting www.texasfolklife.org. Contestants should arrive for the auditions at 5:30 p.m. The public auditions and special musical performance will take place at 7:00.
The auditions will be followed by a performance in the LCC’s Oak Farms Dairy Performance Hall by two powerhouse accordion-based Texas bands—Conteño from Brownsville and Czech and Then Some from Ennis. In the 19th and early 20th century Eastern European immigrants introduced their polka, schotisch, and redowa rhythms, along with the accordion, to the Texas-Mexicans. Both groups continued to evolve the music in their own styles, today you can still see many similarities. The evening’s program is designed to emphasize the connections between Czech-German-Polish polka and Texas-Mexican Conjunto.
“We’re very excited to be hosting the Big Squeeze in Texas once again. Last year I had the honor and pleasure of crisscrossing the state discovering talented young musicians. We doubled participation in the program, evidence that our rich musical heritage is alive and well,” said Program Director Cristina Balli. “We want to continue supporting the musical education of these young squeeze-boxers and at the same time share this cultural treasure with our audience. I’m looking forward to this year’s contest, meeting the contestants and their families, and crowning 2011’s Big Squeeze champion.”
The Big Squeeze is supported by the members and Board of Texas Folklife, the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, the City of Houston through the Miller Theatre Advisory Board, the Houston Endowment, the Still Water Foundation, the Austin Latino Music Association, the City of Austin through the Cultural Arts Division and by a grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts and an award from the National Endowment for the Arts, which believes that a great nation deserves great art. Additional support is provided by regional businesses including Hohner, Inc., SugarHill Recording Studios, Hacienda Records, Embassy Suites Hotel, Sign Effects and FlashBang Agency in Austin.
Conteño with Juan Longoria, Jr., Texas Folklife’s first Big Squeeze champion, plays a harmonious mix of regional Mexican music, including Conjunto, Tejano and Norteño. Longoria, Jr. plays the accordion and his brother, Federico Longoria, is on the bajo sexto. The brothers were influenced by their father’s love of music. Juan Longoria, Sr., along with his brothers, performed in the band Los Halcones Del Valle that emphasized the sounds of rural Mexico.
The Ennis-based band, Czech and Then Some are mostly of Czech descent and enjoy keeping their heritage alive. They have been performing together for almost 15 years and play a variety of musical genres, including polkas, waltzes, and Country Western. They have performed all over the nation, including the National Polka Festival, and have recorded six albums.
Texas Folklife is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to presenting and preserving the diverse cultures and living heritage of the Lone Star State. For more than 25 years, Texas Folklife has honored the authentic cultural traditions passed down within communities and explored their importance in contemporary society. Called “one of the state’s true cultural treasures” by the Austin American-Statesman, Texas Folklife provides accessible, joyful arts experiences.
Located in SoCo just south of downtown Austin, Texas Folklife can be found next door to the Continental Club, at 1317 South Congress Avenue. For more information contact (512) 441-9255, firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.texasfolklife.org.
ALLIANCE SKATE PARK D-TOWN THROWDOWN
Alliance Skate Park D-Town throw down skateboard contest takes place tomorrow right here at the American Airlines Center.
Qualifying starts at 5 pm with the finals at 6:15. Log onto www.D-TownThrowDown.com
ST BALDRICK’S EVENT
St. Baldrick's Event with Willie and Coote Salon
Sunday, March 20th @ 1pm at Jack's Backyard.
For more information go to www.WillieAndCoote.com .
5600 W Lovers Ln # 125
Dallas, TX 75209-4311
Dallas, TX 75209-4311
March 18 and 19th
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