PERFORMED AT 2017 CAF
Amy Jo Sawyer
Amy Jo Sawyer has devoted much of her musical career to the accordion. Her concertizing, composing, arranging, and administrative activities (currently President of The Accordionists and Teachers Guild, International) have enhanced recognition of the accordion as a concert and popular/jazz instrument. Her Jazz CD “According to Amy” and her Classical CD “Classically Amy” demonstrate her virtuosity and the versatility of the accordion. She began piano at age five and accordion by age ten. She represented the Western US in the Coupe Mondiale (World Accordion Championship) in Biel, Switzerland and is a Nationally Certified Piano Instructor (Music Teacher’s Nat’l Assoc.) with award winning students. She earned BA Degrees in Composition and Keyboard Performance, and a MA in Jazz Keyboard Performance. She has composed and arranged for Stage Band, Vocals, Choir, Piano; plus Accordion solos, duets and ensembles.
Amy Jo has written music for, and performed with, the University of Missouri at Kansas City Accordion Orchestra, under the direction of Joan Sommers, on four international tours. She has performed with the Sacramento and St. Louis Symphonies, including accompanying tenor Luciano Pavarotti. Her orchestra compositions have been performed at many notable accordion events, including Frank Marocco’s Accordion Orchestra Event in Mesa, Arizona. Her original Tango, “Juntos” (Together), was performed in Castelfidardo, Italy in 2011 by the Frank Marocco Orchestra. She has performed as a guest artist for the Chicago Accordion Club, National Accordion Association (Texas), Las Vegas International Accordion Convention, Wasatch Accordion Club (Utah), and the Silicone Valley Accordion Club (CA). In 2014 she received the Composer Commissioning Program Award sponsored by the Illinois State Music Teachers Association, for her original Piano solos. In 2016 she was the accordionist with the St. Louis Municipal Opera Theater Orchestra (outdoor theater seating 11,000) in their production of “Fiddler On The Roof”. She also played the accordion with the St. Louis Symphony in performances of the movies “The Godfather”, “Ratatouille”, and “Lord of the Rings” (Fellowship of the Rings). She is Music Chair and principal organist for her church. Amy Jo performs on the Giulietti Super Continental Bassetti accordion.