Skip to main content

Big Squeeze 2018 Showcase – Ennis

TEXAS FOLKLIFE PRESENTS The Big Squeeze Talent Showcase & Auditions – Ennis 

Texas Folklife is pleased to announce that our first Big Squeeze Talent Showcase of 2018 will take place in Ennis at the Ennis Czech Music Festival at Sokol Hall on Saturday, February 10, 2018. 

The Big Squeeze Talent Showcase & Audition at the Ennis Czech Music Festival is one of many Big Squeeze events across Texas in 2018. Texas Folklife's Big Squeeze Accordion Program searches for the top youth accordionist talent in Texas. All genres of accordion music are welcome including Conjunto, Zydeco, Cajun, Polka and more. 

The Polka Category has been extended include ages 25 and under.

Accordionists who cannot attend this showcase to audition can submit an audition video by going to: by March 23 at 11:59pm. 

Finalists will be announced in early-to-mid April and will perform at the Big Squeeze Finals at the Bullock Texas State History Museum in Austin on April 21. 

The Big Squeeze Talent Showcase & Auditions – Ennis
Saturday, February 10, 2018 (Registration: 1pm until showtime at the Texas Folklife booth, Show: 430pm)
Sokol Hall
2622 E. Hwy. 34, Ennis, TX 75119

-Charlie Lockwood, Director of Texas Folklife and Emcee and Master of Ceremony
-Young accordionists will be accompanied by members of Czech & Then Some. Music to follow by David Slovak on the piano accordion, Charlie Patak on the chromatic accordion, and Jerry Petter on the button accordion. All three aficionados will play two songs together featuring the three different accordions.

Show Timeline: 

1pm: Doors & Registration Opens
430pm: Show Start w/ Opening Remarks by Charlie Lockwood & Danny Zapletal
435pm: Big Squeeze Auditions Begin
After Auditions: Music by above listed musicians

Complete Festival Line-up:

9:30-11:00 PM: CZECH & THEN SOME

We are excited to find and showcase accordion talent! The emphasis for this showcase is POLKA. The Polka genre will include German, Czech, and Polish traditions. Cajun / Zydeco will include Creole, Cajun and Zydeco musical traditions. Conjunto will include Norteño and Tejano. Please contact Texas Folklife if you are unsure under which category your music falls. 

All young accordionists in any of the above styles are encouraged to show up an hour before start time to register for our contest. 

Registration to audition begins at 2pm, Auditions are at 3pm and music by Los Morales Boyz & Luis Gonzalez, 2017 Big Squeeze Grand Prize Winner to follow. 

Festival cost is $8 per person. Ages 12 and under are free.

For details, entry rules and entry form, GO TO:

The Big Squeeze is supported by the board and members of Texas Folklife, Hohner, Inc., El Norteño Foods, Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival, and by grants from H-E-B, The Texas Music Office, Texas Commission on the Arts, the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin’s Economic Development Department, and the City of Houston through the Miller Theatre Advisory Board. Regional community and venue partners include Hacienda Records, Cajun Sounds Internet Radio,, Conjunto Heritage Taller, McDonald Public Library in Corpus Christi, Dallas Public Library Pleasant Grove Branch, Café 4212, Multicultural Education & Counseling through the Arts, Larry’s French Market & Cajun Restaurant, Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, Los Fresnos High School, La Joya Independent School District, and the Bullock Texas State History Museum.

RSVP on our Facebook or Eventbrite pages. 

About the Categories

The Conjunto Category has been split into TWO age categories:

• Conjunto Grand Prize, Ages 17 and under
• Anthony Ortiz, Jr. Conjunto Grand Prize, Ages 18-21. The Conjunto grand prize category for ages 18-21 is named in loving memory of Anthony Ortiz, Jr., a former Big Squeeze finalist, virtuosic young professional accordionist, and member of the Texas Folklife family who passed away in 2017.

The Polka Category has been extended include ages 25 and under.

There are no changes in the Cajun and Zydeco Category and all accordionists under 21 as of the date listed on the application should apply. 

For details, entry rules and entry form, GO TO:


Interested in Sponsoring the Big Squeeze? 

The Big Squeeze program and showcase events are partnerships with local businesses, art galleries, record labels, non-profit arts organizations, local public school districts, and universities. We will work with your organization's budget. But, we are also accepting major sponsorships beginning at $5,000+ levels. 

Can we count on your support to make the Big Squeeze program a continued success? Want to see learn more about the Big Squeeze? To see our sponsorship packet, 2017 Finals flyer and photos from our 2017 program, as well as a contestant map from 2007 - 2015, GO TO: