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Giovanni Sollima

Giovanni Sollima is a true virtuoso of the cello, playing for him is not an end in itself, but a means of communicating with the world.
He is a composer out of the ordinary, he communicates with a music full of mediterranean rhythms, with a melodic vein typically Italian, his world covers all eras “from the Jurassic of the Cello” as he calls the baroque period to the “Metal”. He writes mainly for the cello and contributes significantly to the creation of new repertoire for his instrument. His audience is diverse; from classical music lovers to young “metalheads” Giovanni Sollima conquers all.

Sollima was born in Palermo into a family of musicians. He studied cello with Giovanni Perriera and Antonio Janigro and composition with his father and Eliodoro Sollima and Milko Kelemen. From an early age he worked with musicians such as Claudio Abbado, Giuseppe Sinopoli, Jörg Demus, Martha Argerich, Riccardo Muti, Yuri Bashmet, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Ruggero Raimondi, Bruno Canino, DJ Scanner, Victoria Mullova, Patti Smith, Philip Glass and Yo-Yo Ma.

His works as a soloist with orchestra and various ensembles (including the Giovanni Sollima Band, which he founded in New York in 1997) – unfolds between official and alternative locations: Brooklyn Academy of Music, Alice Tully Hall , Knitting Factory and Carnegie Hall (New York), Wigmore Hall and Queen Elizabeth Hall (London), Salle Gaveau (Paris), Santa Cecilia, RomaEuropaFestival (Roma), Teatro San Carlo (Naples), Kunstfest (Weimar), Kronberg Cello Festival , Time Zones Festival (Bari), Teatro Massimo, Teatro alla Scala (Milan), International Music Festival in Istanbul, Cello Biennale (Amsterdam), Tokyo Summer Festival, the Venice Biennale, Ravenna Festival, “The Sounds of the Dolomites”, Ravello Festival, Expo 2010 (Shanghai), Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Liverpool Philharmonic …
In Parallel to the cello his curiosity led him to explore new frontiers in the field of composition through contamination between different genres making use also of oriental instruments, electrical and many of his invention.?He also collaborated with other artists such as, for dance, Karole Armitage, and Carolyn Carlson, for the theater with Bob Wilson, Alessandro Baricco, and Peter Stein and cinema with Marco Tullio Giordana, Peter Greenaway, Lasse Gjertsen (DayDream, 2007), and John Turturro.

Together with cellist and composer Enrico Melozzi he promoted the project 100 VIOLONCELLI created at the Teatro Valle Occupied in Rome. Musicians from all age, formation, got together for 3 days and 3 nights of cello music, from baroque going through rock music to contemporary music written “during the concerts” there were no limits. The project was repeated in 2013 and in 2014 from May 23-25th will take place in Milan at the Teatro delle Arti. There will be the 3rd edition of the composition contest and the first edition of a “libretto” contest.

I 2013 he also was the Maetro Concertatore of the project “La Notte della Taranta” a festival of tradtional popular music from the Salento (region of Apulia) that climax with a big concert with an audience of more 130 000 persons. This summer he will repeat the experience on the 23rd of August.

Among the last albums “Neapolitan Cello Concertos” for Glossa and “Caravaggio” for Egea.

The prestigious Chicago Symphony Orchestra commissioned a new double cello concerto for himself and M°Yoyo Ma, the premiere will take place at Symphony Hall in Chicago in February 2014.

Giovanni Sollima, teaches at the Accademy of Santa Cecilia in Rome and at the Fondazione Romanini of Brescia. He plays a cello by Francesco Ruggieri cello (1679, Cremona).

cello solo or cello and live electronics
Since last three years Giovanni has been touring with the program Ba-Rock Cello always receiving the audience unanimous consensus. This constantly evolving program includes mostly (at the moment!) baroque music from Bolognese baroque composers Bach Cello Suites and, since the title is no accidental, rock music by Nirvana, Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles and Slayer…

two celli or two celli and live electronics
“Pieces of a volcanic nature, floating and suspended. They form a suite in several movements… or portraits, or visions. Virginia Woolf, Emily Dikinson, Leonardo Da Vinci, Clara and Robert Schumann, and others… when I “saw” them I woke up sweating weeping shouting and laughing. And I wrote them as I remembered. Then I learned to dream them again and I saw them again. And I wrote them again.”
Giovanni Sollima

The program involves the croatian cellist Monika Leskovar. Together, Sollima and Leskovar, have performed over 30 concerts in Holland, Croatia, Germany, Italy and America. They recorded the album We Were Trees, performed the premiere of the suite Credo! by Sollima at the Aosta Cathedral, performed as soloists with Cellomania and the Scala Chamber Orchestra in occasion of the great concert in Duomo Square in Milan in 2009, not to mention their upcoming participation in Ravenna Festival in 2010.

FROM BACH TO… Sollima!
A new collaboration with the pianist Giuseppe Andaloro, already winner of the Busoni Prize in 2005. An ever-changing program, according to what they want to play! The repertoire is endless – including Beethoven, Brahms and Schumann works – and the joy to play together is obvious in every note.

The Rite of Spring with a custom made arrangement by Giuseppe Andaloro for the friends Giovanni Sollima and Monika Leskovar, in collaboration with the serbian pianist Tijana Andrejic and in conclusion the op.46 by Robert Schumann Andante und Variationen for two pianos, two celli and horn.

This year Giovanni will be touring with the exciting cello concerto by Friedrich Gulda, Haydn and Boccherini concertos, he will also perform in Turin the Italian premiere of his new cello concerto Folktales with the RAI National Orchestra (italian radio and television) as well as Prokofiev’s Sinfonia Concertante with the Academy of Santa Cecilia Orchestra, Schumann’s cello concerto with Yuri Bashmet and the New Russia Orchestra. There is also the wonderful Boccherini Project with il Giardino Armonico conducted by Giovanni Antonimi and concertos for cello (many unpublished) by De Majo, Leo, Anfossi and Fiorenza, Neapolitan composers from 1700 with I Turchini conducted by Antonio Florio.

If you have additional information about Giovanni Sollima, please write a letter to this e-mail address or leave a message in “Artists” section of our Discuss.

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