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Beatles, Blues And Everything Between

Hicksville resident shares musical talent,

success and passion with community

Music has always been a part of Hicksville resident Ronnie D’Addario’s life. Born and raised in the Theater District of Manhattan, D’Addario grew up surrounded by music, as his father played the saxophone and horns for The Four Seasons and Frank Sinatra and his mother was a talented piano player and singer.

“But on Feb. 9, 1964, everything changed,” said D’Addario. “I saw the Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show and that was it. Music became my passion then.”

That summer, his mother bought him his first guitar – and he became obsessed. He started writing and recording songs immediately. He wrote his first song “Please Don’t Make Me Blue” at just 11. This marked the beginning of his long and successful musical career, one in which he crossed paths with many notable names in the entertainment industry.

“The first famous person that I knew pretty well was the director and actor Otto Preminger,” D’Addario reminisced. “My mom worked for him for 25 years and there were always celebrities in and out of the office.”

He met many musicians while playing with Clancy Brothers member Tommy Makem at Makem’s New York City club, Makem’s Irish Pavilion. Among these musicians were Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Bono and Eric Clapton. D’Addario also played with Tommy Makem on PBS Television specials and made an appearance with him on the Rosie O’Donnell Show.

About 10 years ago, D’Addario moved to Hicksville, where he now lives with his wife, Susan Hall, and their two children, Brian, 15, and Michael, 13. D’Addario’s success as a musician and Susan’s history as an actress sparked their son’s involvement in music and acting. Brian has been successful on Broadway, playing roles such as Gavroche in “Les Misérables” and Flounder in “The Little Mermaid.” Michael starred in the feature films “People Like Us” and “Sinister.”

In addition to acting, D’Addario’s sons are heavily passionate for music, showing talent both instrumentally and vocally.

“Their resumes are pretty impressive,” said D’Addario. “My wife and I are very supportive.”

D’Addario now works at Kellenberg Memorial High School in Uniondale, where he has applied his skills as a musician and recording artist for the past decade. The high school releases two musical albums each academic year, and it is D’Addario’s job to guide students musically and lyrically. He then produces recordings of the songs and puts them on the albums.

“[The students] are thrilled with the results,” said D’Addario. “They gain experience and confidence, and they enjoy their first time in a recording studio.”

Although he’s busy raising his family and working at Kellenberg, D’Addario continues to share his music with others. He is a member of a successful local Irish band called The Irish Mist, with which he plays many gigs at various local restaurants and pubs. D’Addario also has three albums that are for sale online and he is currently halfway through writing his fourth album.

And though the times may be a-changing, D’Addario doesn’t seem too fazed.

“I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing – raising my children, writing songs and playing gigs,” he said.

News

Levittown Hall in Hicksville comes alive every Thursday night with music, dance, fun and laughter as students are swept away into the world of Latin dance.

Under the instruction of professional teacher Mark James, dance hopefuls learn a trio of Latin dance, including salsa, meringue and what James describes as the biggest craze in Latin dancing today, bachata.

 book shops in Hicksville and around the country will hand out free comics on Oct. 25, to celebrate the second biggest free comic book event of the year—Halloween ComicFest. On Saturday, anyone who goes into a participating comic shop can choose from 19 free comics and participate in fun activities comic shops host for their customers to enjoy, while discovering new types of comics and the treasures found in store.

In Hicksville, both Game Master Games (954 S. Broadway) and Amok Time (108C New South Road) will be taking part in the Halloween ComicFest festivities. Game Master Games just recently started carrying comic books and this will be the store’s first comic book-related event. Coincidently, the event runs in the middle of an in-store gaming convention, and store owner Dave VanderWerf is looking forward to the increased exposure for the store.


Sports

The Hicksville girls volleyball team improved to 7-1 by knocking off Oceanside in three consecutive sets by scores of 25-13, 25-19 and 25-14.

Emily Markakis played terrificly, using a powerful serve to record three aces, seven kills and added nine digs. Nikki Chase added six kills and eight digs. Additionally, Raeann Dong was versatile—recording three aces, seven kills and nine digs.

The Girls Varsity soccer team, in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, wore pink uniforms and pink socks in their game on Oct. 8 against MacArthur whom they defeated 1-0. The girls and boys soccer programs at Hicksville High School are selling pink ribbon car magnets with a soccer ball and HHS on it with the words “Kick Cancer” on the ribbon. All the money raised will go to the Sarah Grace Foundation, which is a local foundation trying to beat pediatric cancer. The players plan to raise $1,000 for this organization

— From Hicksville High School


Calendar

Board of Education Meeting

October 22

Oktoberfest

October 25-26

Pancake Breakfast

October 26



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com