La quarta parte della terra- a project about my beloved Latin America

I have been invited with my long-term duo partner Emanuel Torquati to take part at 75th edition of one of the oldest and most prestigious Italian music Festivals:Festival del Maggio Musicale Fiorentino . For this special occasion,our duo will give the premiere of “La quarta parte della terra”, a project completely devoted to Southamerican repertoire and inspired by Florentine explorer Amerigo Vespucci. In one of his letters, he named the new lands that he was about to discover, “The fourth part of Earth” (La quarta parte della terra).

In order to celebrate the 500th Anniversary from his death, we chose a wide selection of pieces written by most prominent Latinamerican composers, e.g. Alberto Ginastera, Heitor Villa Lobos, Carlos Guastavino and Astor Piazzolla.

The program is inspired by the idea of a mesmerizing journey between evocations, sounds and images, with the contribution of video artist Luca Di Pierro (USA-Italy) and film maker Gaston Solnicki (Argentina) and I’ m also working on some electronic interludes  (that I’ll later post here) to connect the pieces and make the whole programme sound as one big composition.

The project will feature Villa Lobos Bachianas Brasileiras n. 2 and the beautiful Song of the Black Swan, as well as virtuosic pieces like Ginastera’s Pampeana n. 2 and Piazzolla’s Le Grand Tango. Last but not least I will perform a new cello solo piece with electronics by Martin Bauer, while Emanuele Torquati will present Tango errante by Maria Cecilia Villanueva.

maggio musicale’s website :

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back from Liege

Last week I spent to interesting and full days in the CENTRE HENRI POUSSER to record and experiment together with the italian composer based in India Riccardo Nova.

We worked on acid distorsions, just intonation, very high harmonics,on both electric and acoustic cellos providing the basic material for a new music theater work (nineteen Mantras)  with both italian and indian musicians plus heavy electronics and dance that will be premiered in Roma next January

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TaT tour

T(ables) a(re) T(urned) is the new work by austrian composer Bernhard Lang written for my ensemble AlterEgo and the english turntablist Philip Jeck

We premiered this huge 70 minutes long work in Berlin at the Maerz musik festival last march..we had the pleausure to play in the great ,legendary Philarmonie..

now we’re back on the road with TaT and we present it in Holland tomorrow (November music festival in DenBosch), in Wien (Wien Modern festival on nov 14) and Huddersfield on nov 20.

Highly virtuositic ensemble writing ( no conductor!) and very cool interactions with the low-fi nostalgic sounds produced by Philip , TaT is a monument to the art of looping and it has a kind of cool, jazzy , “neon light” patterns  that i really find fascinating…

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Lachenmann and Francesconi@MilanoMusica on saturday night

Working hard on two new adds to my repertoire…two great , fresh, exciting and very experimental pieces for cello and small orchestra-Helmut Lachenmann’s Notturno (Musik fur Julia) written in the end of the sixties and Luca Francesconi’s Unexpected end of a formula-very challenging and intriguing works…Learning to produce sounds in any part of the instrument…bridge…endpin…body of the instrument…!!!

concert on saturday night (8/otc/2011) at MilanoMusica festival

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New Liszt cd out!

My new cd in duo with Emanuele Torquati is out!

It presents the complete works by Liszt for cello and piano duo.

Five original pieces (including the well known masterpiece La lugubre gondola) plus various rarities recorded here for the first time

the transcription by Jules De Swert of the 5 Consolations ,considered by the composer even superior to the original piano version, Angelus from Les annees de pellegrinage and the famous Liebestraum n.3

1. Première Elégie, S. 130 (1874) 04:53
2. Zweite Elégie, S. 131 (1877) 04:37
3. Romance oubliée, S. 132 (1880) 04:04
4. La lugubre gondola, S. 134 (1882–5) 08:17
5. Die Zelle in Nonnenwerth, S. 382 (1883) 06:15
6. Pensées poétiques/Consolations pour piano, S. 172 (1844–9) (arr. J. De Swert), No. 1 in C – No. 4 in D-Flat 04:23
7. Pensées poétiques/Consolations pour piano, S. 172 (1844–9) (arr. J. De Swert), No. 2 in A 02:41
8. Pensées poétiques/Consolations pour piano, S. 172 (1844–9) (arr. J. De Swert), No. 3 in E 04:20
9. Pensées poétiques/Consolations pour piano, S. 172 (1844–9) (arr. J. De Swert), No. 5 in G 02:44
10. Pensées poétiques/Consolations pour piano, S. 172 (1844–9) (arr. J. De Swert), No. 6 in C 03:11
11. Angelus! (Prière aux anges gardiens), S. 163, from Années de Pelèrinages: 3ème année, Italie (arr. L. Windsperger) 08:07
12. Liebestraum No. 3 in G, S. 541 (arr. M.Skalmer) 04:21

The hope is to get new interest to this neglected masterpieces and true gems of the cello repertoire!

more infos here:

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Schumann album,CD OF THE MONTH for the italian magazine Suonare

very proud of the beautiful review that my Schumann album got this month!

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artistic residency in Banna with Ivan Fedele

this week,starting today, I will be with the Quartetto Prometeo in residence for one week in the marvellous Spinola-Banna Foundation near Torino

every year they choose a great composer ,Ivan Fedele this time, to work with two young talented composers ,Raffaele Grimaldi and Eric Maestri in this case and an ensemble (my quartet and the soprano Valentina Coladonato)

at the end of the week we’ll present the three new pieces by the guest composers and Beethoven’s op.95 “serioso”

It seems an ideal place to focus on this new repertoire!

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Distant voices,still lives

Some days ago me and Emanuele Torquati on piano opened the concert series of Villa Romana in Firenze, with a new project that we first called “Canti senza parole” and now found its definitive title “Distant voices ,still lives” (like the bautiful movie by Terence Davies).

It’s based on a free but somehow musically logical sequence of pieces from very distant periods and styles all connected by the idea of transferring or imitating or the human voice on our instruments. Some are Lieder in very special transcription (Brahms by Brahms,Schumann by Grutzmacher,Kurtag by Kurtag) other well known pieces insipred by folk songs (Brahms,Lachenmann)

Here one excerpt from the concert in Firenze a beautiful “Lied ohne worte” by Felix Mendelssohn CantiSenzaParole.Mendelssohn-live (in the trascription for cello and piano by Leopold Grutzmacher)

and here is the programme we played in Firenze :

B. Dean (1961)

Elegy (2001)

F. Mendelssohn (1809-1847)

Lieder ohne worte op. 30 n. 3, op. 38 n.2, op. 53 n. , op. 19 n. 4

H. Lachenmann (1935)

Haenschen klein, da “Ein Kinderspiel” (1981) per pianoforte

A. Zemlinsky (1871-1942)


T. Hosokawa (1955)

Lied III (2007)

J. Brahms (1833-1897)

Intermezzo op. 117 n.1 per pianoforte

G. Kurtag (1926)

Az Hit per violoncello solo

R. Schumann (1810-1856)

Fruhlingsnacht op. 39 n. 12, Dein Angesicht op. 127 n.1 , Romanze op. 138 n. 5

S. Sciarrino (1947)

Melancolia I (1980)

G. Faurè (1845-1924)

Chant funèraire, dalla Sonata n. 2 op. 117

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Again in Berlin for an exciting premiere in Berlin Philarmonie for the prestigious MaerzMusik Festival.

We presented the new 1 hour long work T(ables)a(re)T(urned) by austrian composer Bernhard Lang written for my quintet AlterEgo and the turntablist Philip Jeck. The musical material is made of crazy loops and hypervirtuosistic musical treatment of a song by German krautrock band Amon Duul..We’ll present the piece, later in the year in the most important new music festivals (NovemberMusic-Hertoghenbosch,Huddersfield,WienModern,Copenhagen)

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Lezioni di Tenebra by Lucia Ronchetti

back from Berlin ,where I was involved in the first performance of the chamber opera “Lezioni di Tenebra” by Lucia Ronchetti in the famous Konzerthaus

The piece is a reworking of Cavalli’s Giasone, a baroque,underrated ,masterpiece that Ronchetti  has cut,reorchestrated,deconstructed and completelly reinvented in some parts.

the cello has a central role and the other players often come to it and play together with me..

great fun to play the cello 8-hands!

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