Concerto Ostinato for piano and orchestra

Ostinato is an Italian term translated as stubborn, obstinate. It isn’t difficult to imagine how this meaning can be applied to a musical concept. The “ostinato” in music is the persistence of a rhythm, a bridge, a riff, an effect. My (brand new) Concerto Ostinato, for piano and orchestra, explores through its six movements the idea of ostinato in different ways.
1. Prologo. The first short movement creates a quiet sound setting: quiet sounds, calm atmosphere. The continuous strings beat introduces the first idea of ​​ostinato.
2. Bergamasca. Bergamasca is a lively and bouncy traditional Italian dance built on a ground bass which supports numerous variations and embellishments. Based on the traditional dance structure I entrusted the piano with the task of exposing and supporting the bass for the duration of the movement and at the same time talking with the wind quintet. Plucked strings come gradually further supporting and featuring the rhythmic flow of sound.
3. Passacaglia. Passacaglia is one of the most popular forms of ostinato that in the Baroque period has experienced its greatest artistic expression. The ostinato bass line comes in and acts as a support of a harmonic construction that gradually evolves enriched with dissonances to a harmonic collapse. After a shock modulation that changes completely the sound environment a new growing and dynamic color is suddenly interrupted establishing again the initial condition leading to the early conclusion of the movement in the most traditional of the passacaglia finale.
4. Intermezzo. The movement is a kind of scherzo, a light central movement contrasting with the previous one where the principle of ostinato is broaden in the varied repetition of the theme.
5. Epilogo. The epilogue is an episode of break with the repetitive beginning of the concert, totally contrasting with the other movements, an evanescent and reconciling lyrical oasis.
6. Finale. We return on the final movement to the original structure of the entire concerto: the ostinato here is based on a brilliant harmonic-rhythmic cell of pizzicato strings that supports the dotted theme of the piano offering various dialog cues to the woodwinds.
To get an idea please listen/watch to some excerpts from all six movements. The soloist here is Luca Torrigiani with the Bacau Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Robert Gutter.

Quattro Canti for guitar and orchestra: new video

Quattro Canti, as the title suggests, is a guitar concerto divided into four movements. However this is not the only interpretation, as happens in my other works.
Who knows Palermo will surely guess my intention to describe musically the heart of my city, ideally placed at Quattro Canti (“Four Corners”, but also “Four Songs”), a monumental crossroads become one of the most characteristic symbols of Palermo.
Two possible interpretations though: living the music experience becoming carried away by the flow of the four movements leaded by the guitar song or ideally standing in the center of Palermo at Quattro Canti, between Via Maqueda and Corso Vittorio Emanuele and from there watching the soul of the city.
I wanted to represent musically four images of the city seen from this precise privileged position.
Quattro Canti is part of a bigger project called Concerto Trilogy, a collection of three concerti: for guitar and orchestra, for piano and orchestra and a “double concerto” for guitar, piano and orchestra, all composed for guitarist Lapo Vannucci and pianist Luca Torrigiani.
The complete project was premiered December 4, 2016 in Bacau, Romania, with the Bacau Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Robert Gutter. A CD of the Concerto Trilogy will be released next year, in the meantime please enjoy a live recording of Quattro Canti.

 

“Quattro Canti” guitar concerto World Première

QUATTRO CANTI (Four Songs) for guitar and orchestra, dedicated to guitarist Lapo Vannucci, will be premiered next June 2 in Vidin, Bulgaria. Lapo Vannucci (guitar) with the Vidin Symphony Orchestra directed by Robert Gutter.

Quattro Canti for guitar and orchestra is part of the “Concerto Trilogy” composed for guitarist Lapo Vannucci and pianist Luca Torrigiani.
The trilogy consists of a concerto for guitar and orchestra, a concerto for piano and orchestra and a “Double Concerto” for guitar, piano and orchestra. The three concerts still retain their own autonomy and can of course be performed separately.

Quattro Canti, as the title suggests, is a guitar concerto divided into four movements. However this is not the only interpretation, as happens in my other works.
Who knows Palermo will surely guess my intention to describe musically the heart of my city, ideally placed at Quattro Canti (“Four Corners”), a monumental crossroads become one of the most characteristic symbols of Palermo.
Two possible interpretations though: living the music experience becoming carried away by the flow of the four movements leaded by the guitar song or ideally standing in the center of Palermo at Quattro Canti, between Via Maqueda and Corso Vittorio Emanuele and from there watching the soul of the city.
I wanted to represent musically four images of the city seen from this precise privileged position.

1. Al Qasr, this is the Arabic name of the Corso Vittorio Emanuele, Cassaro for the people of Palermo, the historical home of the Urban dynamic and carefree social life as well as a place of dramatic events that have marked the history of the city.

2. Teatro del Sole (The Theatre of the Sun) is one of the names of the “Four Corners”: at any time of day the sun is there, to observe and protect it. Canto del Sole (The Song of the Sun) is a slow movement, is a hymn and a prayer, a tribute to that beautiful light that makes look so beautiful every single stone in the city.

3. The Spanish viceroy Don Juan Fernandez Pacheco de Villena y Ascalon wanted Palermo having this monument and the third movement is a tribute to a nobleman who I imagine very proud and elegant.

4. Watching the sea from the Quattro Canti is impossible without seeing Porta Felice (The Happy Door). It is the entrance to the sea, the symbol of the beginning of a journey, it is a symbol of freedom, image of happiness.

PRESS RELEASE

The Concerto Trilogy

Francesco just finished his new Pianoconcerto, the Concerto Trilogy is now complete with this third section. The project consists of two solo concertos, for piano and for guitar and orchestra, and a double concerto, already premiered in 2015, for guitar, piano and orchestra. The soloists, who also commissioned the project, are guitarist Lapo Vannucci and pianist Luca Torrigiani. The premiere of the new solo concertos is scheduled for June 2016.

The complete program:

Tre Paesaggi (Three Landscapes) for guitar, piano and orchestra:
1. Alba (Sunrise) – 2. Vette (Peaks) – 3. Maestrale (Mistral)

Quattro Canti (Four Songs) for guitar and orchestra:
1. Al Qasr – 2. Canto del Sole (The song of the Sun) – 3. Don Juan Fernandez Pacheco de Villena y Ascalon – 4. Porta Felice (The Happy Door)

Concerto Ostinato for piano and orchestra:
1. Prologo – 2. Bergamasca – 3. Passacaglia – 4. Intermezzo – 5. Epilogo – 6. Finale.

Pianosequenza Tour China 2015/2016

Pianosequenza is on tour in China from late November until January 2016 with music by Michael Nyman, Francesco Di Fiore, Nino Rota, Philip Glass, William Susman, Marco Betta and Yann Tiersen. Of course with the stunning visuals by Valeria Di Matteo. Also on December 11, at the Grand Theatre in Huzhou singer Pu Yue will join the project together with Francesco performing songs from soundtracks.

PIANOSEQUENZA has been released!

The new solo album is finally out. The album contains film music for piano by Philip Glass, Yann Tiersen, Michael Nyman, William Susman and Francesco Di Fiore himself.
Pianosequenza is released by Zefir Records and available worldwide.
Watch the beautiful album trailer by Valeria Di Matteo:

Francesco is currently in the Netherlands, home to Zefir Records, to present Pianosequenza with concerts in Middelburg, Amsterdam, Sneek and Groningen.