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Hi everybody!

My name is Alessandro and I am an Italian tenor and pianist. I live in Newmarket, Suffolk, and I teach Singing and Piano. I think mus...

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Summer + Schubert = Happy Alessandro!

Hello guys!

It's been a while since the last time I posted something - let me try to recap what happened in the last few months!

First of all, some great news: in May I had the chance to perform for the first time in Athens! I had to step in for a colleague, so I joined a very interesting European project dedicated to Gioachino Rossini, involving musicians from Italy, Portugal, Serbia, Montenegro, and Greece. Here we are at the Topos Allous Theatre after the performance:


Of course, I could not leave without visiting the Acropolis, it is such an amazing place! After Athens, I went straight home to Italy to sing in an all-Disney concert: my friend Federico Lovato invited me to perform a few Disney songs with the amazing Anna Viola and Raffaele Prestinenzi, and the big band conducted by Igor Vlajnic. Here you can listen to me singing a little excerpt from the Italian version of Prince Ali from Aladdin - this was so fun!


So now back to Schubert - after a very exciting Winterreise (Winter Journey) in Cambridge in January, now between July and August I'm singing all 3 of Schubert's song cycles! At the beginning of July, I performed with Ralph Woodward Schwanengesang, the Swan's Song, which is a compilation of the songs Schubert wrote in his last months, before passing in October 1828. It was the first time I performed the whole cycle and the relaxed atmosphere of a private event in an XVIIIth Century country house provided the perfect environment for it:



A few weeks later, I came home to Italy and threw myself into work straight away: a concert performance of Traviata with my favorite Violetta, soprano Anna Viola, and then Ralph joined me to repeat Schubert's Winterreise in Lignano Sabbiadoro, the seaside town where I grew up:


I was very happy to spend a few days with Ralph and his partner Anna in Italy, rehearsing, eating fish, and visiting together some of the places of my childhood!

Now, after a little Gershwinian digression which took place last week, again with Anna and Raffaele and the amazing jazz pianist Rudy Fantin, it's Schubert time again! Next week I will join my old friend Michele Bravin to sing, again in Lignano Sabbiadoro, what is actually the first of the song cycles written by Schubert: Die Schöne Müllerin, The Fair Maid of the Mill. It is also the cycle I have performed more often - even though not in the last few years - so it will be a sort of musical homecoming for me and I very much look forward to it.

Performing Die Schöne Müllerin, Winterreise, and Schwanengesang by Franz Schubert it's a very demanding job, and doing it in such a short amount of time is a long-cherished dream. I am really happy the time has finally come for it to become true and, let me say, I am quite proud of myself for this achievement!

Only a few days more of practicing and rehearsing, then I will finally enjoy a couple of weeks of holiday!

Sunday, 23 January 2022

Schubert in Cambridge

Hello everybody!

Yesterday's concert in Cambridge with Ralph Woodward was my first Lieder recital here in the UK: I've always been very passionate about this repertoire and I was very happy to finally share my love for Schubert's music with the British audience. Schubert's Winterreise (Winter Journey) is one of the most demanding works to perform, 75 minutes of wonderful music, no intermission, a real journey into hell as we follow the protagonist in his wandering through the wintery landscape and his descent into despair and madness. No human beings on his path, just traces of them - an abandoned hut, a graveyard, the distant lights of a village and the sound of the dogs barking - and snow, ice, wild animals and the longing for death. Only at the end, our Wanderer will meet another human being, an old hurdy-gurdy player, alone in his misery, and for the first time he will be able to speak to someone other than himself: "Can I come with you? Would you play your instrument to my songs?". And so the story starts again, in an eternal reliving of his pain through his songs.

I feel very lucky and so grateful to have the opportunity to perform this masterpiece - and to do it with the wonderful Ralph Woodward!




This concert marked my return to Schubert's Winterreise since before the pandemic (I was working on this programme at the time of the first lockdown in 2020 and so we had to postpone the concert) - let's hope that this is a good omen and we will now finally able to go back to our normal lives!

More Schubert to come later this year, to mark the composer's 225th birthday!

Monday, 10 January 2022

Winterreise

 Hi everybody and happy New Year!


I hope you had a good time during the past Christmas holidays - I was able to go back to Italy and spend some time with family and friends!

I'm back in Newmarket now, and looking forward to many wonderful things in 2022 - the first one will be another concert with pianist Ralph Woodward: on Saturday 22nd of January we will perform, for the first time together, Franz Schubert’s ‘Winterreise’ (‘Winter Journey’), one of Western art-song’s greatest masterpieces. The twenty-four songs tell the story of the poet’s reaction to being jilted, as he paces the wintry landscape, alone and in shock. It’s a study in grief, a searing psychological monodrama, and it contains some of Schubert’s most haunting music.




The concert will take place at the Downing Place United Reformed Church in Cambridge and to book your ticket (£10 - students £5) please drop a message to ralphwoodwardtickets@live.co.uk.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Thursday, 18 November 2021

Salon Concert

 Hi everybody!

I am very happy to announce the first of a (hopefully) long series of the Newmarket Music Box Salon Concerts! We will meet in Joanne's living room in Bottisham on Sunday 5th of December, aiming at recreating the magic of the "true" chamber music, as it happened for many centuries when musicians gathered in private salons.



With "The Romantic Tenor" pianist Ralph Woodward and I will have a look into the evolution of the tenor voice and roles throughout the Romantic Era, featuring music by Donizetti, Verdi, Puccini and a glimpse into what was happening in France and Germany. 

To get one of the last tickets available, visit Newmarket Music Box's website!

I look forward to seeing you there!

Friday, 24 September 2021

Teaching

 Hello everybody!


I am finally back in Newmarket and it's time to restart with my lessons!

I've already met some of my students after the summer break and I look forward to seeing all of them and working together to help them to achieve their goals. If you are interested in Piano or Singing lessons, or you need help with music theory, or you are a singer who could use some help dealing with Italian and French or a hand to prepare new pieces, contact me and I will be happy to help!





I look forward to hearing from you!


Monday, 23 August 2021

Italy Italy Italy!

 Hi everybody,

I hope you are having a great summer!


I had quite an intense spring, going back to face-to-face lessons with most of my students, preparing exams with some of them (everybody did great!) and finally working on some new concert programs.

Then, after so long, I was finally able to go back home, see again my family and be on a stage performing with great colleagues! I had a few concerts in August but the most exciting one was a brand new English program: I sang the Michelangelo Sonnets by Benjamin Britten, the powerful 4 Hymns for tenor, viola and piano by Ralph Vaughan Williams and some of the very funny Just So Songs by Edward German. At the piano sat my adventuring companion Michele Bravin and for the Vaughan Williams an old friend of mine joined us, Corrado Cicuttin. Corrado and Michele also performed two pieces by Rebecca Clarke (if you don't know her, have a look here or here... she was a truly great composer and a viola player herself!).

By the way, Corrado and I went to High School together and he's been living in Austria for many years now. We were very happy to finally be able to do a concert together!


I have now another couple of concerts (including Mozart's Requiem) in my schedule - and a proper holiday finally! After that I'll be back to Newmarket and to my students in September.

I'm also working with my friend and colleague Alice Haylock on some new Newmarket Music Box meetings, so don't forget to visit the NMB's Facebook and Twitter pages, the website or the Instagram account @nmkmusicbox to hear about the news!


I hope you will enjoy the rest of the summer and I look forward to hearing from you!


Sunday, 21 February 2021

New Conferences with the Newmarket Music Box!

 Hi everybody!


It's been a while since the last time I posted something here... I spent the last few months in Italy, unexpectedly, but now I am finally back: new year, now home (always in Newmarket though) and a new series of events with the Newmarket Music Box!

3 online conferences with 3 new friends of the NMB: Ralph Woodward will share with us his experience as choir conductor dealing with composers in the realisation of new compositions; Alžbeta Greenwood-Byrne will introduce us to the wonders of the saxophone and Edward Whelan will guide us in understanding better the music of the 18th Century.


You can register for the talks here - there is just a small attendance fee of £5 per household - and you will receive all the instructions to join the Zoom meeting.

In a time when socialising and organising events is still difficult - if not impossible - I believe it's more important than ever to do what we can to stay close and share our passion and love for music. So join us for these events!

Wednesday, 14 October 2020

Back to the UK

 Hi everybody!

After a summer when I could luckily enjoy the pleasure and joy of making again music together with wonderful colleagues and friends in Italy, I am back in the UK.
And here... the Newmarket Music Box is waiting for us! We organised a brand new series of online musical conferences, one per month, for the next 3 months. And there is another great news: we have a new friend!
Alice Haylock will do the first talk, on Sunday 25th October and I will do the second one, on Sunday 22nd of November. The last one will be on Sunday 13th December, with our new friend and wonderful singer Naomi Rogers. She was born and bred in Newmarket and we are so lucky she joined our team!




You will, of course, find more news here on my blog, but why not following the Newmarket Music Box on socials too?
Here are the Facebook and Twitter pages; the NMB is also on Instagram now: nmkmusicbox.
To attend the talks there is a small attendance fee of £5 per household. You can register and pay the fee here.

Come and join us!


Monday, 10 August 2020

Concerts again!

Hi everybody! It's been so long since the last time I posted something and I hope you are keeping well and safe!

The last few months have been one of the strangest periods in our lives, and our minds were quite busy trying to understand what was going on and how to go on in the best possible way, despite the stress, maybe fear, and the problems we all know very well now.

Many people found new ways of doing what they used to do, ways to get over the impossibility to meet other people, colleagues, friends, family. As musicians, we lost a lot of opportunities to make music and to play for an audience live, in a theatre, in a concert hall, or even in a living room. But now things are gradually getting better and better, and we shall be grateful for this, and very careful.

I came back to Italy nearly two months ago: I had, like all other teachers, to move my lessons online, so I tried to get the best out of this situation and I thought this would have been a wonderful opportunity to be at home with my family longer than usual. Finally, two weeks ago, I had my first concert after the lockdown. It was a very moving evening for me, the first opportunity to make music again with a great musician and friend, the pianist Alberto Miodini, and to sing again in my hometown for many friends and members of my family. It was amazing to feel the wonderful sensation of living the music together with so many people (well, not so many, as following the new rules to avoid the spreading of the virus, only half the seats available), so nice to feel again that incredible and magic connection between the artists performing and the audience. The theme of the concert was "Fathers and Sons" and we performed songs by Schubert, Loewe, Wolf, Mahler and Strauss which are about the relationship between a father and a son, and some songs by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and by Leopold, his father, and Franz Xaver, his son. Moreover, one of Alberto's friend, the composer Emilio Ghezzi, wrote for us a very beautiful piece, especially for this occasion.

Here you can listen to some of these songs:




Last Saturday I had a second concert, and that was something quite new to me. With Anna Viola and Raffaele Prestinenzi, we sang a selection from 3 musicals: The Phantom of the Opera, West Side Story and The Man of La Mancha. Anna and Raffaele were first Christine and Erik from The Phantom, then I was Tony and Anna Maria in West Side Story; finally, Raffaele gave his voice to Don Quichotte, Anna to Dulcinea, and I was the funny and faithful Sancho Panza. Michele Bravin played the piano and we had great fun!

Now I will still be teaching this week, and then finally I will take some weeks off (even though I will have some concerts to do). In September I will start with the lessons again, and the concert schedule is getting busier, as organizers are trying to make up for the events they had to cancel. I look forward to coming back to the UK, hoping to be able to meet soon my students and my friends!

Monday, 2 March 2020

Newmarket Music Box

Hi everybody,

yesterday we had a great Sunday at the March Newmarket Music Box meeting!
It was focused on Mozart's opera Don Giovanni, and I gave a talk about the opera and its context, plot and characters. I had a lot of fun preparing my speech, reading essays on Don Giovanni, listening to lots of recordings and choosing which examples and what excerpts play for the audience.
I also performed Don Ottavio's aria Dalla sua pace, with my good friend Cedric at the piano!
Here is a little excerpt from our performance:


We were very happy to meet some new people, attending our meetings for the first time, and we are already working for next month's event, taking place on April 5th. Stay tuned for more info!

The Newmarket Music Box is a music appreciation society I run with Alice Haylock, a clarinettist and music teacher. We organise a meeting every month: sometimes we set a theme and ask all the participants to suggest music related to it, or we organise talks like this one about Don Giovanni - but we are also planning a Salon Concert Series, with light concerts in people's living rooms, as they used to do before the spreading of the recordings and there was a piano in every home!

Please, find out more about the Newmarket Music Box and take a look at the Facebook and Twitter page and at our site!

Friday, 24 January 2020

Happy New Year!

Hi everybody,

it's been quite a while since my last post so first of all, let me wish you all the best in the New Year!


I spent the Christmas holiday back home in Italy, singing in some concerts with great colleagues and enjoying the time spent with my family and friends, and now I am back in Newmarket, ready for new musical adventures - not forgetting my wonderful students!

At the moment some interesting new projects are taking shape, but for now, let's start this 2020 with a piece of good news I am really excited about: on Saturday 4th April at 6 pm, I will perform Franz Schubert's Die Winterreise with the pianist Ralph Woodward at the Jesus College Chapel in Cambridge! I performed this incredibly beautiful song cycle many times in Italy, with my friend Michele Bravin and this will be the first time I can sing it here in the UK. This will be also my first song recital with Ralph (and I really hope the first of a long series), who is an amazing musician: I am honoured to have him at my side on this occasion!




I look forward to this concert and I hope to see you there!