Ron has had a long and varied career as a professional pianist and band leader. He has performed in country clubs and hotels throughout the Pittsburgh area. His resume extends from Heinz Hall and the Benedum Theater to private homes and family picnics. His repertoire is very large and includes standards from the Great American Songbook, jazz, showtunes, Classic rock, Motown, popular songs and some Classical pieces. Ron can play any tune which he can hum, so requests are usually no problem.
In addition to his solo work, Ron also provides entertainment with his small groups. His duo and trio play a variety of styles including jazz, big band, Sinatra, Classic rock, and Motown styles (just to name a few). They are very experienced at playing for wedding receptions, parties, and functions of all sizes. The Merrymakers Duo & Trio are upbeat and appeal to people of all ages. They play what they call "happy music" -- traditional jazz (Dixieland and Benny Goodman style jazz). Big Band, Beatles, James Bond themes, funk, pop rock and Ragtime, to name a few. While people who love jazz love this group; even better, people who don't love jazz are also very enthusiastic about their music. This lively music is entertaining without being overbearing. This is not a thrown-together group with revolving personnel, as many groups are today. They have been together for 20+ years with the same group members. We are sure you will hear the difference -- first class all the way.
Ron is an Adjunct Professor of Piano at Duquesne University. He has a Masters Degree in music. Ron has played at premier venues in Pittsburgh, including Heinz Hall, Benedum Center, Carnegie Music Hall, Syria Mosque, Stanley Theater, and on radio, television and movies. Mr. Bickel has performed with such diverse artists as Mel Torme, Rodney Dangerfield, Michel LeGrande, Gladys Knight and the Pips, Liberace, The Skyliners (featured on their hit record, “Since I Fell For You”), Billy Eckstine, Glenn Miller Orchestra (Ray McKinley), Little Anthony and the Imperials, Mickey Rooney, Jimmy Dorsey Band, The Flamingos, The Modernairs and Bobby Vinton.
Professor of Piano - Duquesne University
"Ron did an excellent job for our wedding; he's very talented. He was also great with getting in contact with us and accommodating every request. Ron was nothing but professional."
- Jessica L
"Ron's music was perfect for our reception. There were many guests at our reception that were musicians , and the compliments for him were flying. His playing made the occasion perfect. "
- Louise F.
" My father was very happy with Mr. Bickel's piano playing. It gave him the birthday party he wanted. I would recommend him for any party or reception that needs a piano or keyboard player. Thank you very much."
- Pamela W.
"Ron was a delight to work with from the very first conversation! He was very prompt in contacting us initially and made sure that we were kept informed all along the planning process as well as calling with a last minute reminder a few days before my daughter's wedding. He arrived ahead of time for the event - which was miraculous considering the extreme traffic delays because of the lovely road construction going on that weekend! He set up quickly and was playing before we had a chance to blink! We received many compliments on the talent and class Ron exhibited during his performance at our cocktail hour. We thank Ron and would definitely reccomend him to anyone!"
- Sandra M.
"The guests enjoyed every moment of their performance, the selections played created a perfect atmosphere, will definitely hire them again and recommend them!" - Ray S
"Excellent for our wedding cocktail reception . Guests had many compliments." - Kathleen M.
"Merrymakers did a beautiful job in providing music for my wedding reception. Ron, the bandleader, was accommodating beforehand and contacted me beforehand several times to ensure things were set up. The guests raved about the talent!" - Lauren P.
"Excellent Performance. [Ron Bickel's Trio] played a variety of music that suited the party very well. I would recommend them to anyone who enjoys good jazz played by talented musicians." - Alex B.
Thank you so much for playing at my mother's birthday party! You really made it special. You are a wonderful musician...I will recommend you to everyone I know!! We really appreciate you making the time to be with us (especially on father's day!).
Many many thanks,