Tabernash: Accordion brings life to Oktoberfest meal
September 19, 2008
Lace up your lederhosen for live accordion music and a traditional Oktoberfest celebration at the Tabernash Tavern next Wednesday.
Chef Al Sapien presents a festive menu for the day, which includes specialty items and authentic German fare. Three seatings are available during the evening ” at 5, 7 and 9 p.m.
Diners will have a choice of one Spaten beer or a glass of Gruner Veltliner white wine, choice of spinach salad or soup (roasted butternut squash bisque with shrimp), entree choices include braised veal shank with sauer braten, salmon rouladen on warm German potato salad, or jaeger schnitzel on spaetzle; and dessert choices are black forest creme brule or apple berry strudel.
Live music will be provided by nationally-known accordion artists Mike and Margie Aman playing polkas, waltzes, sambas, rumbas, the tango, and a variety of other music styles from Germany, Austria, France, Italy and Slovenia.
Their signature sound includes clean technique and exciting arrangements on the diatonic button box and electronic MIDI accordion.
The Aman accordion duo has extensive training and experience. Mike was one of the first professional accordionists hired to perform in public schools in the United States and his MIDI arrangements are said to “wow” audiences. He has directed several national championship accordion orchestras and even helped produce a national solo champion.
He said he was “fascinated and intrigued” with the instrument, falling in love with it as a child listening to his uncle play. Wanting their son to have fun with it, Aman’s parents got him the best training and he had the opportunity to learn from Charles Magnante, “dean of the concert accordion.”
Margie fell in love with the accordion after someone came to her school and presented a demonstration. Being German, she said the family was always around someone who played (her grandfather played a small button box). She majored in the instrument at the University of Denver and is now considered a master of the four-row Austrian “diatonic” accordion.
Playing with each other, Margie said, brings the two closer together.
“It’s always fun to share a common interest,” she said. The two have been named as a true “dynamic duo” by Dick Albreski, president of the Oklahoma Accordion Club, who also said the club was “mystified” in their ability “to sound like a full orchestra at one moment in time and then unite (the) duo into the sound of a single accordion.”
“The music veers from the classical (shades of ‘Flight of the Bumble Bee’) to country (‘Make the World Go Away’) to rockabilly,” said William Porter of The Denver Post.
“Aman’s hands are flying, and as he lurches his body to wrench a vibrato effect from the accordion, he looks like Jerry Lee Lewis minus the bourbon and child bride.”
The Amans are looking forward to the show.
“It’s great fun to play festivals in the mountains,” Margie said. “We enjoy playing for people, especially since so many people grew up with accordion music, it’s part of their heritage. The accordion can do much more than most people realize.”
The Aman accordionists have two CDs available, one with their duets and one with Mike playing some of his favorite solos, and the couple is currently working on a new Web site at http://www.accordionshow.com.