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NE Minneapolis artist shares Rroma (Gypsy) immersion experience and takes you on a music mining expedition to Northeastern states.
NE Minneapolis artist shares Rroma (Gypsy) immersion experience and takes you on a music mining expedition to Northeastern states.
33 backers pledged $2,520 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

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NE 2 NE Accordion Expedition

My name is Dee Langley. I live in NE Minneapolis and want to take you on a musical expedition to the Northeastern United States where I will share something valuable and unforgettable in music while creating an exciting and innovative new piece of original music to bring home.

Who am I?

I have traveled the world performing, teaching and learning about the music of other cultures. I have taken part in International accordion competitions behind the Iron Curtain, toured as a musician with dance troupes to France, Poland, and the Czech Republic and attended and adjudicated world level accordion competitions in North America, Europe and New Zealand. I've studied with Russian masters in East Germany and France and most recently Rroma (more commonly known as Gypsy) musicians in Serbia.; it was total Rroma immersion.

Teachers at Amala School
Teachers at Amala School

 Where am I going?

I’ve been invited by the Mid-Atlantic Music Teachers Guild and the American Accordion Musicological Society to present a workshop on my Serbian Rroma immersion at their festival March 28-30, 2014.

What am I doing there?

During the workshop students see a PowerPoint presentation and will learn about Rroma culture. Then they will experience a small part of Rromani life by learning a Rroma tune in the oral tradition (by ear) and playing it along with me. It will be an unforgettable look into the music and a culture that is often misunderstood and either feared or romanticized. In addition to the workshop I have also been asked to perform on one of the festival’s many concerts.

Performance with The EDT Folk Orchestra, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Performance with The EDT Folk Orchestra, Minneapolis, Minnesota

What else will I be doing?

Before and after the convention I will have an opportunity to continue my musical quest by collaborations with leading local national artists on Bulgarian rhythms (Ivan Milev, CT), Serbian ornamentation (Nickolay Mirkovich, CT), American Jazz improvisation and Gypsy Jazz groove (Corey Pesaturo, RI).

What will I bring back to Minneapolis/St. Paul?

When I return to Minneapolis I will perform my concert repertoire from the festival, selected tunes featuring the new styles of music I learned, and best of all I will premiere the new original work written by me, inspired by the expedition. The evening’s festivities will also include highlights from the Rroma Immersion workshop.

How am I going to get my accordion half way across America in one piece?

Traveling long distances with an accordion has become increasingly more difficult. Although an airplane is the fastest and cheapest way to get most places, I no longer can trust the airlines to get my instrument to its destination in one piece; they have already damaged it twice. Driving a car would be more expensive and add many hours of travel and much wear and tear on me and the person who would have to come along to help drive 1,200 miles each way. Well, if you do not fly or drive, the best option left (besides teleporting) is travel by rail. The Empire Builder and Cardinal lines of Amtrak connect St. Paul/Minneapolis and Philadelphia. It is more expensive than an airplane but more economical and faster than a car. The most important thing is that I can have my instrument with me at all times so I know it is safe and also that I will arrive at my destination ready to go instead of ready to rest.

Amtrak Empire Builder
Amtrak Empire Builder

What specifically am I raising funds for?

This is what my Kickstarter project is all about; it makes this cultural exchange possible. The funding will be used for round-trip transportation from Minneapolis to Philadelphia, lodging, and car rental and other expenses (such as gas and tolls) as I travel to work with other musicians.

What happens if the project over funds?

If the project is over funded I will record the new original composition written in honor of this trek and include the EP (mp3) as part of the $50 & $100 level pledges.

photo by Colleen Bertsch
photo by Colleen Bertsch

What are the rewards for pledging?

The rewards for a pledge include:
• exclusive downloads of music
• access to mobile updates within private groups on Facebook, Twitter or through email
• a personalized copy of the Rroma Immersion presentation in PowerPoint format (including sheet music and other handouts)
• private hour lesson or interview with me via Skype or in person if you can get to Minneapolis.

Who will be affected if I do not fully fund?

If the NE 2 NE Accordion Expedition is not fully funded it will be a big disappointment for those in the northeastern states who have waited so long for me to return with my accordion to share my Rroma adventures, and it will be disappointing for all of us at home who eagerly await the new music about to be created by my imagination as a result of this journey.

Acme Accordion School with Stan and Joanna Darrow, founders of AAMS
Acme Accordion School with Stan and Joanna Darrow, founders of AAMS

From me personally...

Thank you so much for your support of the NE 2 NE Accordion Expedition. This will be an excursion to remember and I am glad you will be taking it with me!

Risks and challenges

If one of my collaborators is ill, there are alternates available.

If for some reason the festival is cancelled another concert in Westmont, New Jersey will be held.

If the PowerPoint presentation is not possible for technical reasons I'll give a lecture and pass around pictures to the attendees of the workshop.

If something happens and I can't make the train trip, I'll buy plane ticket to shorten the time.

If I can't go by train and have to go by air I'll ship my accordion by insured carrier (very expensive).

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Six selected downloads of printed or recorded music from the expedition.

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    3 backers
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  2. Select this reward

    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Access to all mobile uploads and downloads, including printed, recorded music and blogging during the expedition. Private group on Facebook, Twitter or email.

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    7 backers
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    All of the above plus...a personalized copy of the Rroma (Gypsy) Immersion PowerPoint presentation given at the Mid-Atlantic Music Teachers Guild for the American Accordion Musicological Society, March 28-30, 2014 in Whippany, New Jersey.

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    4 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    All of the above plus...a private one hour interview, concert or accordion lesson via Skype or in person (Minneapolis, Minnesota). Lesson may be on any type of free-reed instrument at any level.

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    8 backers
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Funding period

- (36 days)