Karen Majewicz and Andy McCormick have been playing and writing music together as Dreamland Faces since 2002. They have composed scores for over 50 silent films, and released many original recordings. They perform regularly throughout Minnesota and the Midwest. Their repertoire includes modern classical pieces, original instrumental music, and the occasional art song or popular song.
Karen Majewicz is an accordionist with an interest in original, classical, and new music. She holds an ethnomusicology degree from the University of Washington and has studied with accordionists all over the country, including Stas Venglevski, Eva Ybarra, Dale Wise, Larry Malmberg, Helmi Harrington, and Jon Persson. In 2014, Karen received a Metropolitan Regional Arts Council Grant to obtain a converter accordion in order to specialize in art music. In addition to composing for and performing with Dreamland Faces, Karen has appeared with the Minnesota Opera and Mixed Precipitation’s Picnic Operettas. She also plays regularly with new music chamber ensembles.
Karen plays two types of piano accordions: a stradella model and a free bass model. Both instruments feature a piano keyboard for the right hand, but differ in the left hand. The stradella has chord buttons for the left hand, which allow the player to produce the familiar accompaniment style of alternating bass and chord pattern. The left hand on a free bass consists solely of single notes rather than pre-set chords, and can be used to play a much broader style of music, including classical or atonal works. It is capable of producing inversions, clusters, and melodies across a large range of pitches.
Andy McCormick is a multi-instrumentalist and singer. He sang in choirs directed by Harriet Simons, who introduced him to Morton Feldmann and other modern composers. He enjoys performing & studying the music of Hanns Eisler. His compositions are featured in films, the theater, on many albums, and on TV shows and commercials. Andy regularly sets music to poetry and writes for chamber ensembles. He is a dedicated reed organ enthusiast, but saves most of his reed talk for the accordion. When Garrison Keillor created the "Andy McCormick Academy Of The Saw" in 2011, many of Andy's regular saw gigs suddenly disappeared.