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Mariano Dallapè, The Pioneer

 

Mariano Dallapè was born on May 12, 1846 in Brusino Cavedine, in the Trento province, which was at that time an Austrian territory. His life resembles a romantic fairy tale, full of painful events but also of fame and success. He realized very quickly that the simple peasant life of his homeland did not suit him. He was thinking about something important. His idea stook shape when he understood that the sound of his inseparable Austrian Accordion, which he had learned to play, could be improved: this is how the story goes. We have more reliable information about his life since after he left his village in search of better living conditions, and, in 1866, he settled in Stradella. Once in this town, which at that time had just been proclaimed City, he started attending the local workshops where he crafted a much better diatonic accordion than the one he already had. The Bellows Accordion he had created earned immediate success, and soon later the reputation of Mariano Dallapè trespassed the territorial boundaries. It is well known that, since 1976 and with the help of about 20 co-workers, Mariano established the production of his new"sound box" in some simple rooms next to the field Church of Versa.
In the chronicle of the Milanese newspaper L'Italia industriale, dated April 24, 1900, Mariano Dallapè is depicted as the owner a large accordion factory providing job to about forty craftsmen and which, built just five years earlier, had been already honored with prestigious awards at world expositions. The industrial success earned him the title of Knightof the Crown Order of Italy, conferred by King Umberto I in April 2, 1898.
At this point, in his factory in Stradella, Mariano had already brought about the final transformation of the semi-diatonic organ into the modern Accordion with chromatic musical scale. He had also realized the bass coding still called the Stradella Bass system, characterized by pre-established chords suiting all tones.Successively, the factory was expanded, arriving to employ about 300 workers.The brand Dallapè had become synonymous with "excellence", thanks to the extraordinary sound quality of its products. In acknowledgement of the world wide fame acquired by his accordions, Mariano Dallapè washonouredwith the title of Officerof the Crown Order of Italy, the highest honor of the state, just four years before dying in 1928.