Over 10,000 visitors to the Marche city, cradle of the bellows instrument. The International Accordion Prize closes with record numbers. Prestigious presences from all over the world.

The Chinese Hang Ding is the winner of the International Accordion Prize 2022. The young musician, 20 years old, managed to register his name in the Golden Register of the PIF of Castelfidardo, conquering the jury composed of some of the most important accordion teachers in the world and chaired by the chair holder of the Cherubini Conservatory of Florence, Ivano Battiston. It is the outcome of yesterday’s final, Sunday 2 October, of the Award Category, the most prestigious recognition of the PIF.

“I started playing at the age of five – commented Hang Ding, visibly excited at the end of the award ceremony – I wanted to participate in this competition, the most authoritative in the panorama of the bellows instrument, to make myself known and I am very happy with the victory because represents an extraordinary opportunity for artistic growth and visibility”.

Hang Ding took first place, beating Belgian Loris Douyez and Italian Michele Bianco. All three finalists, accompanied by the Calabria Philharmonic, played at very high levels, performing in the interpretation of an unpublished piece composed for the occasion by the Ukrainian musician and conductor Volodymyr Runchak.

Awarded by the winner of the last edition, the French Julien Bautemps, as well as a cash scholarship, Ding obtained an engagement for the next concert season of the Royal Belgian Academy of Mons and the opportunity to record a disc with the Nugo label , which is based in Castelfidardo.

“A successful challenge” for the artistic director Antonio Spaccarotella, who recalls that he wanted to further raise the bar of the review by building a program full of experiments, precious synergies and moments of encounter between different musical genres and cultures. “The presence of acclaimed musicians on the international scene, teachers and students from all over the world, appreciated by an increasingly transversal public – added Spaccarotella – fills me with pride”.

Thus the curtain fell on the 47th edition of the PIF, the festival & competition with which every year Castelfidardo celebrates its musical instrument, the accordion. Over 10,000 visitors over the five days of the event, about 220 competitors from every corner of the planet and more than 80 events, including awards ceremonies, seminars, exhibitions and concerts by artists of various backgrounds and of international caliber and prestige, who have been able to enchant the public exploring the unlimited sound potential of the bellows instrument. These are the record numbers of the event, promoted by the Municipality and Pro Loco of Castelfidardo, with the patronage of the Marche Region and the Ancona Chamber of Commerce and the support of Amma (Marche Association of Accordion Entrepreneurs and Artisans) and numerous other partners. The success of the Kermesse was marked by great teamwork, which saw councilor Ruben Cittadini at the helm of the organizational machine, and a proposal of the highest quality.

“This year – commented the mayor of Castelfidardo Roberto Ascani – we doubled attendance compared to the last edition, which took place in presence but with the limitations related to the health emergency. We are very happy to have succeeded in fully promoting our universally recognized artisan excellence in the accordion world, but above all the talent of the new generations of accordionists. And to be told by the jury and by the insiders that we have brought sensational musicians to the stage, who have distinguished themselves for their technique and skill, is truly a great satisfaction”.