The Accordion Club of Tucson was recently honored with the prestigious
Frosini Award at the Las Vegas International Accordion Convention in
June 2005. The award, named for famous accordion performer and instructor
Pietro Frosini, is given to the club that has contributed the most to the
accordion, its music and culture during the preceding year. The competition
was adjudicated by an independent international committee.
ACT was chosen from an impressive list of clubs worldwide for our active
involvement in the community, energetic members and leaders, and overall
commitment to promoting the accordion in our community. Congratulations
to everyone in the Club for an outstanding achievement!
Backstage Tucson Meet Yourself
This award honors the memory of one of the America's great accordionists. Pietro
Frosini was born Pietro Giuffrida in 1885. His father, Michael Angelo Giuffrida
was a poor farmer with a hobby, playing the accordion, which greatly
influenced young Pietro, who began playing at age four. He was a natural,
playing parts of operas, overtures, waltzes and folkdances...always from
memory. When he was older, he received a scholarship to a music
conservatory. But he was unable to study accordion there, so he played
cornet, piano and organ.
In his 20’s, Pietro joined the English seaway as a cornet player in their orchestra. One day in 1905, they arrived in San Francisco, and Pietro decided to stay. It was then that he changed his last name. Why Frosini? Nobody is certain. We only know that Rossini was his favorite composer and that an admired teacher at the music conservatory was named Frontini.
He quickly met Guido Deiro, who convinced Pietro to change his approach from classical to more popular styles. Then in 1913, he moved to New York, where he lived until his death in 1951 entertaining, composing, playing, teaching and raising a family.
Frosini composed approximately 200 original pieces for the accordion, mostly light and entertaining. Pietro Frosini, along with Pietro Deiro and Anthony Galla-Rini, dominated the accordion scene in the United States throughout most of the Twentieth Century.