Ninth Annual Dr. Willard A. Palmer Festival
May 6 AWAM events align with international celebrations of World Accordion Day and will be emceed by Kevin Friedrich, CIA Ambassador. AWAM presents Stas Venglevski in concert premiering his “Full Moon Suite” composed for Joan Cochran Sommers, UMKC Professor Emerita. Joan will perform in duet with Stas, and in trio with accordionists Betty Jo Simon and Jane Christison. Judy Campbell Contino will pay tribute to her legendary husband Dick Contino, whose estate displays are expected to open at AWAM by 2022. Accordion star, Dr. Michael Middleton, will perform a concert of Contino favorites. Because the pandemic prevents international travel, guest Japanese artists, Mihoko Goto and Chiharu Ebihara, will be live-streamed. Dr. Brett Jones, Chairman of the University of Wisconsin Music Department, Stas Venglevski (AWAM’s new Artistic Director) and Alex Sandor (UWS Piano Instructor) will perform William Susman’s original work “Three for Keyboard,” for bayan, marimba, and piano.