A concert celebrating Italian culture and featuring composers, music, and musicians from Italy. The group will include Berklee Italian faculty members and two very special guests from Italy and France: the world renowned legend of European jazz bassist Ricardo Del Fra and the extraordinary jazz pianist Teo Ciavarella.
Riccardo Del Fra, born in Rome in 1956, is a multitalented musician: a double bass player, arranger, and composer. Del Fra played alongside Chet Baker for nine years both in Europe and Japan on tours, for the radio and for the television; a collaboration which led to the recording of twelve albums, videos and the movie Chet's Romance, directed by Bertrand Fèvre. At the beginning of the 1980s, Riccardo Del Fra settled in Paris where he joined a very active rhythm section with the pianist Alain Jean-Marie and the drummer Al Levitt, while at the same time continuing to play with Chet Baker and the pianist Michel Graillier. In the 1990s the trombone player and composer Bob Brookmeyer, whose composition classes Del Fra had taken in Cologne, invited him to join his quartet. They toured together and recorded the album Paris Suite which won the Prix de l'Académie du Jazz in 1994. In September 2004, Del Fra was named head of the department of Jazz and Improvised Music at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris. In 2003, Del Fra was named Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the Minister of Culture and Communication.
Italian pianist and composer Teo Ciavarella has played concerts with jazz musicians such as Gerry Mulligan, Eddie Gomez, David Sanchez, Jeff Berlin Paolo Fresu, Hiram Bullock, Greg Yasinisky, Antonello Salis, Fabrizio Bosso, Dhafer Youssef, Stefano Di Battista, and many others. Ciavarella has also toured with theater companies and composed music for theater productions, television, and radio programs. He has performed in various international jazz arts festivals such as Umbria Jazz, Urbino Jazz, Le Grande Parade Du Jazz de Nice, Festival Jazz de Samois-Fontainebleau, Comacchio Jazz, Festival de Rouen and many others. Ciavarella has recorded more than 50 CDs, three as band leader, including Halfway, Prendiamociunapausa with Paolo Fresu, and Teo Ciavarella and Friends, and recorded live in Germany with the Romanian clarinetist Romeo Tudorache with the Opera String Quartet from Berlin. In 2001 Ciavarella was awarded an honorary recognition from the DAMS faculty at Bologna University as part of the 30th birthday celebration of the DAMS degree in Bologna. In 2003, he received the Live Jazz for Life award by ANT Italia. Ciavarella has been teaching jazz piano at the Convervatorio Frescobaldi in Ferrara since 2006, and since 2007, he has been teaching jazz piano at the Conservatorio G.B.Martini in Bologna.