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David Fontanesi: Four Concertos – Elegiac (Violin) • Arcadian (Cello) • Academic (Flute) • Frugal (Piano)

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  • Artist(s): Alberto Martini, Francesco Stefanelli, Ginevra Petrucci, I Virtusi Italiani, Michelangelo Carbonara, Vincenzo Bolognese
  • Composer: David Fontanesi
  • EAN Code: 0746160910727
  • Edition: Da Vinci Classics
  • Format: 1 Cd
  • Genre: Concerto
  • Instrumentation: Cello, Flute, Orchestra, Piano, Violin
  • Period: Contemporary
  • Publication year: 2020
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DAVID FONTANESI’S FOUR CONCERTOS
by Filippo Focosi

The tendency of music critics, and more generally art critics, to find connections and lines of influence linking a certain composer or specific work with real or presumed predecessors (towards which the artistic creation in question is supposed to be, in some respect, indebted), is a game of cross-referencing that is as intriguing as it is dangerous. It is intriguing, since part of a work’s meaning can be understood only by comparing it to other composers’ works, with which it engages in a conversation (more or less consciously as the case may be), and by which its aesthetic and cultural coordinates are defined. But it is dangerous when the whole edifice of comparisons erected to describe the work in question becomes too close-fitting, suffocates its most intimate nature and risks failing to do justice to its formal, expressive and stylistic qualities.
If one wished to apply this sort of procedure to the four recent concertos of David Fontanesi ‒ while paying careful attention not to expose oneself to the hazards mentioned above ‒ one would find oneself right in the middle of an apparently inextricable tangle, so many are the references (both the hidden allusions and those more openly stated) and the stylistic connections that shape the substance of these works, written in the two-year period 2016-17. Wishing to approach the matter in chronological order, and arbitrarily limiting our research to the Italian peninsula, the first example that comes to mind is that of Antonio Vivaldi’s famous Four Seasons: either for mere reasons of number and macro-structure, or, more specifically, because we find the composer returning to that idea of dialogue between instruments that was so widely developed in the concerto of the 17th and 18th centuries. There is, however, not a trace in Fontanesi of the programmatic or descriptive intentions we find there. So it would perhaps be more pertinent to consider the so-called Generation of the Eighties, and especially those works – like Malipiero’s Cimarosiana or Casella’s Scarlattiana ‒ that represent that recovery of the antique, and of instrumental and polyphonic music in particular, from which modern Italian music was supposed to take its cue. But even in this case, it is worth noting that Fontanesi does not directly quote thematic sources from the Italian classical tradition; instead, the inspiration he draws from such works is to reassert universal values such as those of formal unity and contrapuntal complexity.
Most likely, therefore, a more fitting way of pinning down these works is to link them to Franco Margola, a composer who is particularly dear to Fontanesi (who, it is perhaps worth remembering, curated the critical edition of Margola’s Quartet no. 7 for flute and strings). With Margola he shares the same desire to engage in a sort of neo-Baroquism purged of ideological pronouncements, whose apparent austerity is tempered by post-Romantic nostalgias and instances of subtle irony. But what they share to an even greater degree – over and above the obvious stylistic differences, given that Fontanesi lacks that modernist angularity (caused by the superimposition of different surfaces in a way reminiscent of synthetic cubism) that characterises Margola’s aesthetic approach ‒ is a specific idea of the composer’s craft. This ‒ to quote the words once used by the older master ‒ should be understood as a “silent craftsmanship that, in absolute modesty, operates in a way that is free of clamour and polemic”.
The general form of the works performed here, as has already been suggested, owes much to the format of the Baroque concerto, with a middle Andante movement placed between two Allegros. The formal concision we sometimes encounter does not prevent Fontanesi from presenting an abundant variety of melodic ideas, rhythmic inventions and unexpected modulations, though always within the bounds of an admirable structural clarity. Exemplary, in this sense, is the ‘Arcadian’ concerto for cello, with the solo instrument entrusted with the statement and development of a melodic line of great emotional vigour, that passes through various expressive landscapes as it follows the carefully planned key transitions from minor to major. The opening of the second movement, presented by the oboe and strings, transports us to an oneiric dimension, amplified by the songlike melodic phrases of the solo instrument. A refrain, which harks back to the main theme of the third movement of Khachaturian’s Cello Concerto (from the rhythmic point view and in its orchestration), sets the tempo of the final rondo, driving it through virtuosic cadenzas and orchestral crescendos to a finale of great intensity.
The Concerto for piano – called the ‘Frugal’, perhaps to underline its immediate appeal, in spite of a compositional style that is particularly refined and rich in interesting details (both formal and timbral) ‒ seems to bounce happily between the 19th and 20th centuries. For while the grandiose orchestral section and the virtuoso piano-playing displayed in the second movement hark back to late-romantic utterings, the radiance of the syncopated string and woodwind chords and the lively piano figurations that typify the brilliant outer movements transport us to the neoclassical world of the early 20th century, enriching the discourse with scintillating interactions between piano, percussion and (especially in the final movement) flute.
At times – it is the case, for example, in the first two movements of the Concerto for violin, called the ‘Elegiac’ – the composer embraces larger forms, which he exploits to develop to the utmost the broadly conceived themes played by the solo instrument, in a lively dialogue with the patterns of the accompanying orchestra; whereas in the final movement the violinist is called upon to answer, with flashes of virtuosity, the powerful orchestral chords that repeatedly affirm their presence.
Even longer is the first movement of the Flute concerto, which opens with an extended orchestral exposition, which is anything but merely introductory, given the wealth of thematic material and the contrapuntal density displayed. The entrance of the soloist is artfully delayed in the manner of the classical composers, who saw this as a particular source of pleasure for the audience. Yet listeners are here also provided with more sophisticated forms of gratification: like that of following the exposition and development of the various themes and participating in the close dialogue between soloist and orchestra. In this work, which the composer significantly labels as ‘Academic’, the classical style is also evoked in the measured emotional tone that pervades it, the admirable formal balance that sustains it, and the taut polyphonic strands that run through it. At the same time, however, the music allows itself pleasant distractions, particularly the melodies assigned to the flute, which are as relaxed and dreamlike in the second movement as they are swirling and vivacious in the rhythmically charged final movement.
Alongside the well-proportioned compositional framework, which conceals within it an abundance of syntactic nuances and shifting blends of timbre, what these four concertos have in common, from the emotional point of view, is the prevalence of idyllic and nostalgic tones that combine and alternate. In this way they project the mental image of an arcadia that is intangible, but ‒ as Friedrich Schiller had already theorised in his dissertation on the naïve and sentimental, towards the end of the 18th century ‒ still present, at least as an ideal goal, in our aspirations as inhabitants of modernity. Is this contemporary music? If one follows the commonly held opinion, that the contemporary must speak exclusively of present-day reality, and especially of its most decadent, degrading and dangerous facets ‒ a fashionable notion that has also taken root in the other art forms, and that insists, for example, that an artist should be classified as authentically “contemporary” only if his/her works duly express feelings such as unease, alienation and angst ‒ in that case the answer is no. But I believe it is high time to free ourselves of these stale clichés, in favour of an approach that may also capture the positive aspects of our being in the world and the gratifying experiences ‒ even through artistic (and specifically musical) creation ‒ that it can offer us. Among these, we should include the experience of listening to David Fontanesi’s concertos, which, with their refined outdatedness, are among the most genuine and seductive within the variegated panorama of contemporary music.
English Translation by Hugh Ward-Perkins

A GUIDE TO LISTENING
By Antonino Dinolfo

Fontanesi’s concertos seduce and charm us with the beauty and variety of their materials. The composer uses musical language to delight and move the listener by basing his ideas on the finest tradition of art music. His music consciously acts on the emotional sphere; in other words, it “arouses the mental faculties or emotions”, as the etymology of the verb “to move” suggests. For Fontanesi the listener is an active participant: one who draws on his own emotional and cultural experience and reflects the suggestions offered by the work, hence sharing in its completion. It is with an awareness of this ‘conversation’ with his listeners that the composer constructs his scores, re-elaborating the syntax and forms of the tradition in works that are rich in pathos and avoid all self-indulgent experimentalism. The refinement of the themes and their development, the subtlety of the counterpoint, the skilful use of the orchestral palette, combined with an expert use of formal structures: these are all features that contribute towards making the musical language both imaginative and evocative. The success of the operation prompts the listener to make guesses about the influences that may have inspired the composer in the conception of these scores. Any such enquiry, which would be difficult and intriguing at the same time, would take us on an intense and fascinating intellectual and emotional journey: an inner journey that does not go in search of definitive answers, but instead finds satisfaction in the delight of the mind and the heart. The four concertos are here performed by front-rank musicians, who enhance the composer’s ‘graphic signs’ by going beyond the abstractness of the symbol and charging it with sensations and emotions. So they too, along with the composer and listener, are contributing to the concrete realisation of the score by drawing on their own experience and musical intuition.
Elegiac Concerto
I –Allegro appassionato
The first movement opens in the manner of an expansive landscape of sound. As the melody of the solo part unfolds, it is sustained by an orchestration that is both balanced and rich in detail: luminous flashes that give vigour and sustenance to the dialogue engaged between the violin and the other instruments. Against this background the lyricism of the solo part proceeds in a crescendo of emotional tension only to give way to the dynamism of the following development with its rapid quadruplets. Here the violin’s continual shifts in register give rise to a pyrotechnical display of light and colour that eventually subsides gradually towards an elegant return to the state of repose.

II – Adagio molto
The elegiac tone anticipated by the title of the work fully emerges in this delightful tableau. The opening in the minor key, with its sombre sonorities that seem to issue forth from the terrestrial depths, imparts to this movement a delicate sadness that, though mitigated by the later harmonic modulations, continues to resonate in the romantic lyricism of the solo part and in the reverberations of the contrapuntal interplay. In his scoring the composer pays meticulous attention to the gradations of orchestral colour, fully aware that the listener’s delight greatly depends on such subtle nuances and shadings. In the ensuing development the conversation between the violin and the “tutti” displays a preference for flowing triplets: a steady progress of overwhelming urgency in which the emotional climax of the entire movement is fully realised.

III – Vivace
Contrast, rupture, separation: the unity of the three movements finds its fulfilment in this unexpected and unsettling development. In this way the atmospheres of the preceding movements are enhanced by asserting musical ideas that are in many respects the very opposite. The recourse to a 7/8 metre in itself represents a choice heavily charged with stylistic and expressive consequences, for here instability is generated by the alternation of the duple- and triple-time patterns. In such a context of wavering tensions the violin conducts its virtuosic flights with admirable agility, without ever losing sight of the essential poetic need for aesthetic beauty. In selecting his palette of orchestral colour the composer favours the distinctive timbres of the classical tradition. And the sense of unity and coherence of the movement is strengthened by restating structural features that stimulate the listener’s memory.

Arcadian Concerto
I – Allegro moderato
A whirlwind of sounds introduces a solo part characterised by anxious questioning, as of one who, experiencing a state of turmoil, is in search of essential, vital answers. The various responses in the dense contrapuntal texture in no way placate the restlessness, thereby generating an emotional background of doubt, of ‘no-reply’. Particularly admirable is the interdependence with which the melodic lines interact, prompting superb brushstrokes that never sound superfluous or random. An ensuing relaxation of the turbulent climate turns out to be only momentaneous: the pressure to seek fulfilment generates an incessant search, though it is abruptly halted by a chord left suspended, without resolution, that dramatically reasserts the opening questioning. Can we take this as being the emotional state that nurtured the composer’s creative inspiration?

II – Poco Adagio
The cello’s opening theme, the subsequent entrance of the strings and the successive warm tones of the horn help to depict a dreamlike atmosphere: a truce, possibly, in a sea of uncertainties? This relaxation, however, contains within itself the echoes of melancholy. The transition towards more reassuring emotional states, conveyed by the melodic sequences in the solo part, turns out to be an illusion: after the rest that seals the achievement of resolution, an unexpected and unsettling seventh chord interrupts the dream and prepares the listener for the next movement.

III – Allegro agitato
This is a movement of extraordinary beauty that unites diversity of character, virtuosity and original ideas: a rich sequence of refined suggestions. The cello opens with an extended theme characterised by a particular fluidity, imparted by the interplay of binary and ternary rhythmic figures. The dynamic and richly scored orchestration elegantly – and at times discreetly – supports the cello’s steady process, generating a rapid sequence of emotive promptings that are particularly effective. On its subsequent restatement the opening theme of the solo part resumes its course towards a comfortable and resolute close, as if to signal a conciliatory epilogue in the artist’s inner struggle.

Academic Concerto
I – Allegro moderato
The long orchestral introduction that precedes the flute’s opening flourish anticipates a number of thematic elements that are subsequently restated or hinted at. This has the effect of orienting the listener in the continuous flow of new ideas. The creative material used by the composer seems to draw on influences that can be assigned to different historical periods. The introductory phrase on the strings, for example, seems to open up visions of 17th-century Venice. Although this is a solo concerto, the various parts of the orchestra often take on prominent roles and at times establish a sort of conversation between instruments. Of considerable impact is the dialogue that unfolds between the winds (min. 7:43): a demonstration of elegant polyphony that, on the one hand, alludes to the severity of the contrapuntal school, and, on the other, thanks to the uncommon use of the horn in the low register, conjures up sonorities reminiscent of the Renaissance. Indeed the similarity to the serpent, an instrument of the cornett family, is remarkable. The whole movement, however, is firmly arranged within a grand framework of distinctly Romantic design.

II – Adagio espressivo
This movement, in which the soloist plays a flauto d’amore in A, outlines an expansive landscape in sound. It sounds like an invitation to engage in the serene contemplation of the natural elements. Such impressions are reinforced by the soloist’s well-defined theme sustained by the ascending intervals of the horn. The use of the mute in the trumpets and of hand-stopped sounds on the horns (min. 2:15) introduce stylistic elements of a distinctly modern flavour that sharpen the listener’s curiosity. A similar effect is generated with the modulation of the oboe (min 3.56) that disturbs the prevailing atmosphere, before the opening theme of the flauto d’amore is restated, this time elegantly varied.

III – Vivace
I could perhaps say that the flute’s introductory phrase, which is clearly outlined and strong in its impact, constitutes the entire movement’s centre of gravity. The subsequent developments, despite their different dialectical natures (reprise, variation, opposition), continually seem to revert to this opening assertion. We perceive it, therefore, as a strong statement that permeates the listener’s memory, while the generative heart of the whole movement lies in the persistence of the quadruplet figure. The solo part, with its sober virtuosity, is the ‘narrating voice’ of the delightful ‘fable in sound’ in which the listener is liable to lose all cognisance of present time (as if in a dream), only to find it again (as if in a gradual awakening) in the ascending sequences of the final quadruplet figure that bring the movement to a close.

Frugal Concerto
I – Allegro moderato
A notable dynamism animates this first tableau, which is both contrapuntally dense and rhythmically varied. The style is agreeably chromatic, while surprising the listener by avoiding the more habitual melodic and harmonic sequences. Indeed the composer seems to have been inspired by an idea of ‘chromaticism’ that goes beyond the purely musical aspect. The sensations evoked are of a visual and literary nature, thanks to both the expressive use of orchestral colour and the narrative vivacity imparted by the movement’s rhythmic and melodic dynamism. The piano gracefully weaves its threads against an animated and variegated background made up of motives that proceed in parallel, anticipations and restatements of thematic ideas, affirmations of rhythmically incisive fragments, even juxtapositions of different volumes. Worth noting, for example, is the sudden thinning of the orchestral sound (min. 1:20) that introduces a more rarefied atmosphere: a momentaneous meditation on the soloist’s part that contrasts with the greater fullness of the preceding textures.

II – Adagio
Is this perhaps the echo of a hazy morning or the evocation of the mists that weigh upon the soul? What emotional impulse may have prompted the composer to generate this magnificently touching movement?
Is it the dominance of compositional artifice that produces beauty or is it beauty that, through the mere mediation of the composer, generates the musical score? Such questions can only be left unanswered: all the listener can do is let its powerful allure resonate within, while contemplating its mystery.
III – Presto
The decisive – and at the same time beguiling – opening of this closing movement provides a sure indication of its character. The tumultuous pace, however, also leaves space for calmer moments in which the buoyancy of the solo part effectively takes over. In such a vital and dynamic framework, the listener is often surprised by the appearance of contrasting ideas or fragments that, in the manner of opposing forces, relax the sensation of movement. An example is the writing for the trumpets (min. 0:41). The recapitulation of the introductory theme (min. 2:39) marks the beginning of a headlong chase to the end in which the ideas fall over one another before bringing the work to an emphatically convincing close.

English Translation by Hugh Ward-Perkins

Artist(s)

Alberto Martini: He graduated brilliantly in violin at the Music Conservatory of Verona in 1983 and went on to study with Corrado Romano at the Geneva Conservatoire. Since then he has worked with many orchestras in Italy and abroad acting as leader and conductor and reviving the figure of the concertmaster.
As leader he has worked regularly with many important orchestras, including the Pomeriggi Musicali of Milan, the Teatro Comunale of Bologna, the Teatro Lirico of Cagliari and La Scala of Milan, collaborating with the leading orchestral conductors. In June 2009 he made his debut as a soloist in the prestigious Isaac Stern Auditorium at the Carnagie Hall of New York playing Mozart’s Violin Concertos and achieving a resounding success in a fully sold-out auditorium.
He is regularly invited to the most important festivals in Italy, France, Germany, Spain, Great Britain, United States, Japan, Russia, China and Korea. Since 2006 he has been artistic director and concertmaster of the Virtuosi Italiani, which has been performing its highly regarded concert activities in the Sala Maffeiana of the Teatro Filarmonico in Verona for 20 seasons.
In 2016 he was appointed artistic director of the Teatro Ristori in Verona and violin professor at the Music Conservatory of Brescia. He has curated the critical revision and the complete recordings of the works of Veracini, Bonporti and Bottesini.
He has recorded over 60 CDs for the world’s major record labels, such as Deutsche Grammophon, Warner Classics-Erato, Chandos, EMI, Naxos, Brilliant, Dynamic, Verany and Tactus.
He is regularly invited on juries of prestigious international competitions for both violin and chamber music and holds masterclasses at various Italian and international institutions.
He plays a valuable instrument, which is perfectly preserved and original in all its parts, built by Enrico Ceruti in Cremona in 1840, with a “Grand Adam” bow by Jean Adam of 1850 that belonged to the great violinist Philippe Hirschhorn, as well as magnificent violin built by Ferdinando Gagliano in Naples in 1765.

Francesco Stefanelli: Born in San Marino in 1999, He started studying cello at the age of 7 at the Music Institute of San Marino. He graduated with honors in 2015 at the Institute of Higher Education “Lettimi” in Rimini. In 2012, when he was only twelve, he was permitted to attend the course held by M° Antonio Meneses at the “Accademia Chigiana” in Siena, obtaining the diploma of merit. He continues his studies with Thomas Demenga in Turin, Enrico Dindo at “Pavia Cello Academy” and Antonio Meneses at “W. Stauffer Academy” in Cremona. He has attended Masterclass with Jens-Peter Maintz (Mozarteum Salzburg, Schleswig-Holstein Musik Festival in Lubeck, Rutesheim Cello Akademie, Brühl, Ljubliana), W.E. Schimdt, Ivan Monighetti, Frans Helmerson, Paolo Bonomini. He won the second prize at the International K. Penderecki Cello Competition in Krakow 2018, he won first prizes in national and international competitions including, first prize at 11th International Cello Competition “Antonio Janigro” in Croatia whose victory allowed him to perform at “Smetana Hall” in Prague as soloist with the “North Czech Philarmonic Orchestra”, first prize at “EuroAsia International Music Competition” in Cremona, first prize at “European Music Competition” in Moncalieri, first prize at “Città di Giussano Competition”. He won the prestigious scholarship entitled to”Maura Giorgetti” for the best Italian young cellist under twenty, organized by the “Philharmonic Orchestra of the Scala Theatre of Milan” and the scholarship of “Yamaha Music Foundation of Europe”, he was awarded the scholarship of “De Sono Associazione per la Musica” and he received a scholarship from the “International Academy of Music” in Liechtenstein where he takes part in the intensive music weeks and activities offered by the Academy (class of J.P. Maintz). He has performed as soloist and in chamber music ensembles in many cities like: Prague - Smetana Hall, Siena - Accademia Musicale Chigiana, Cremona - Museo del Violino and Teatro Ponchielli , Bergamo - Sala Piatti, Vigevano, Firenze, Turin, Ravenna, Imola, Cesenatico, Rimini, Zurich, Lugano, Lubeck, Edimburgh, Kohln, Krakow. He has collaborated with the Filarmonica della Scala under the baton of Daniel Harding, Zubin Mehta, Lorenzo Viotti and he got the suitability for first cello of the Cherubini Orchestra of Ravenna conducted by Maestro Riccardo Muti (2019). Since 2016 he attends the “Master of Arts in Music Performance” at Lugano Conservatory with Enrico Dindo after he received the Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship for Artists ESKAS.

Ginevra Petrucci: Hailed by the press as “one of the most interesting talents of her generation”, Ginevra Petrucci has performed at Carnegie Hall (New York), Kennedy Center (Washington D.C.), Salle Cortot (Paris), Teatro La Fenice (Venice), Villa Medici (Rome), Ohji Hall (Tokyo), as well as throughout China, South America and the Middle East.
As a soloist, she has appeared in concert with I Pomeriggi Musicali, I Virtuosi Italiani and the Chamber Orchestra of New York, and has released the first recordings of Edouard Dupuy and Ferdinand Buchner’s Concertos. Her chamber music experience has brought her to appear alongside pianists Bruno Canino and Boris Berman, and to a long-standing collaboration with the Kodály Quartet, with whom she has released the highly acclaimed recording of the complete Flute Quintets by Friedrich Kuhlau. Her recording of Robert Muczynski’s Sonata has been praised as “oozing with lifeblood and zest … enthralling and rousing”. In 2017 she has rediscovered and recorded Wilhelm Kempff’s Quartet for flute, strings and piano and toured Italy with its premiere performances.
Ginevra devotes much of her artistic endeavors to contemporary music. At Yale University she has collaborated with George Crumb, Steve Reich, Betsy Jolas and Kaija Saariaho, performing the American premiere of Terrestre. She commissioned Jean-Michel Damase’s last composition, 15 Rubayat d’Omar Khayyam for voice, flute and harp, and she has appeared at the Venice Biennale Contemporary Music Festival with a commissioning project dedicated to Witold Lutosławski. In 2018 she has founded the Flauto d’Amore Project, a large-spanning commission endeavor aimed to the creation of a new music repertoire for the modern flauto d’amore.
She has curated the edition of over twenty musical editions, including Briccialdi Concertos for Ricordi/Hal Leonard and first editions of works by Mercadante, Jommelli, Morlacchi, Busoni and De Lorenzo. Her scholarly articles appear in the Flutist Quarterly, as well as in the leading flute magazines in Italy and France.
She has studied at Santa Cecilia Conservatory in her native Rome with her father, and then pursued her education at the École Normale in Paris. She holds a Master and Artist Diploma from Yale University and a Doctorate of Musical Arts at Stony Brook University.
She is Principal Flute at Chamber Orchestra of New York.

Michelangelo Carbonara: He graduated at seventeen at the Conservatory Santa Cecilia in Rome, with full marks, under Fausto Di Cesare’s guidance. In 1999 he was awarded his Piano Specialisation Degree by the Academy of Santa Cecilia, under Sergio Perticaroli's guidance.
He continued his studies at the Salzburg Mozarteum and at the Académie Musicale de Villecroze in France. He attended masterclasses headed by Bruno Canino, Dominique Merlet and Gyorgy Sandor.
In 2001 he was admitted to the International Piano Academy Lake-Como headed by Martha Argerich. He had lessons with many important pianists such as Leon Fleisher, Dimitri Bashkirov, Fou Ts'Ong, William Grant Naborè, Claude Frank, Menahem Pressler, Andreas Staier, Peter Frankl and Alicia De Larrocha.
He has won 17 prizes in International piano competitions.
In 2003 he gave his first performance in China, and a masterclass at the Central Conservatory in Beijing.
In 2007 he made his debut at Carnegie Hall, New York and he now performs regularly in Europe, America, Asia and Africa.
He has recorded for Papageno, Tactus Suonare Records, Nascor-Ysaye Records-Harmonia Mundi, Egea, Brilliant Classics, Piano Classics labels. He gave chamber music masterclasses at USAC in Viterbo and piano masterclasses in Romania, China and Canada.
In 2005 he was invited at the National Prize for Arts, promoted by the Italian Ministery for Culture, as testimonial for the italian music. He is Piano Professor at "C.G. da Venosa" Conservatory in Potenza, Italy.

Vincenzo Bolognese: Born in Lecce in 1966. He was a pupil first of his father and then of Felix Ayo. He obtained his diploma in violin and chamber music with the highest marks and special merit at the Conservatory of St. Cecilia and the National Academy of St. Cecilia.
He then continued his studies with Salvatore Accardo, Riccardo Brengola, and Pierluigi Urbini.
Bolognese has won a large number of prestigious prizes in national competitions, including the "Curci" prize (Naples, 1985) and the "Paganini" prize (Genoa, 1987).
In 1988 he was invited to give a recital in Palazzo Tursi with the violin which Paganini himself used and he has also been awarded the "Plateo d’Oro" prize for artistic merit.
He has played with such important musical institutions as the Teatro San Carlo of Naples, the Accademia di Santa Cecilia, the "Scarlatti" Orchestra of Naples, the Warsaw Symphony Orchestra, the Berlin Symphony Orchestra, and the Maggio Musicale of Florence.
He has played under such famous conductors as Accardo, Aronovic, Ferro, H.W.Menze, Maag, Plasson, Sinopoli, Stern, and Urbini.
He has also performed for many national radio and television corporations - in Italy, France, Germany, Monte Carlo, and the Vatican. In 1990 he was awarded the gold medal of the international association "Foyer des Artistes".
As a musicologist, he has curated the revision and recording of a large number of pieces by Paganini for Boccacini and Spada (in CD), Ysaye’s Six Sonatas, all of Heifetz’s transcriptions for violin and piano, a monograph on Tartini, Paganini’s Fourth Concerto and Variations, as well as the world premiere of Respighi’s Concerto in A Major.
He has served as Concertmaster of the Orchestra dell’Accademia di Santa Cecilia, and is now serving in the same position at Teatro dell’Opera di Roma.
He plays a "Mattia Albani" violin which was made at the end of the 17th century.

Composer

David Fontanesi: He holds a master in History of Medieval Philosophy at University of Padova. He has studied piano with Lucia Lusvardi Gallico and composition with Giorgio Colombo-Taccani and Stefano Chinca.
He continued his composition studies with Azio Corghi at Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Siena and with Mauro Bonifacio at Accademia Romanini in Brescia.
His chamber and symphonic works are published by Casa Musicale Sonzogno (Milan) and Da Vinci Publishing (Osaka). In 2014 he published the CD “Chamber Music with Flute”, in 2015 the CD “Intimate Chamber Music” and in 2017 “Orchestral Works” for the label Bongiovanni (Bologna). In 2018 he published the book “Preludi ad una metafisica della musica contemporanea” for Zecchini Editore.
In 2019 he published the CD “The Third Way – Chamber Music & Sonatas for Winds” for the label Da Vinci Classics.