This Week in Accordion: Coupe Mondiale

This week, Washington, D.C. becomes the accordion capital of the world as the 60th annual Coupe Mondiale (World Cup) competition rolls into town. It’s like the World Series and Super Bowl rolled (or squeezed) into one as the best accordionists from around the globe compete in the world’s most prestigious accordion championships.

Sponsored by the Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA), the Coupe Mondiale hasn’t been held in the United States since 1981 (Kansas City), so this is a rare chance to see such an incredible collection of accordion talent.

  • Coupe Mondiale Competition
    The thrill of victory, the agony of defeat… you can catch the actual competition proceedings all week long at the Holiday Inn in Alexandria. There are categories for junior accordionists, as well.
  • Kennedy Center Concerts
    The Coupe Mondiale isn’t all about competition, though. All week long, the Kennedy Center’s Millennium Stage will host free concerts with renowned international accordion ensembles like Akkordeonorchester Hof and Accordeonova. There’s also a champions concert featuring the Coupe’s first-place winners on Saturday evening.
  • Coupe Mondiale Grand Finale Concert
    What better way to end the week than with the first-ever performance of the World Accordion Orchestra? The orchestra consists of 150 accordion players from around the world, many of whom are CIA officers or delegates.

If 150 accordionists isn’t enough for you, there may be even more at Friday’s “Massed Accordion Band” performance on the steps of the Capitol building. All accordionists within shouting distance are invited to participate in this once-in-a-lifetime performance of John Philip Sousa’s “Stars and Stripes Forever.” (Aren’t you glad they didn’t choose “Lady of Spain”?)

If you’re attending any of the Coupe Mondiale events this week, we’d love to hear from you. Drop us a line and we’ll post a recap early next week.

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