Buona Giornata Tutti!
We have just arrived back to the United States after a whirlwind of a tour of Italy for the past two and a half weeks as featured artists with the International Music Project and guests at the Conservatorio di Rossini. The tour was everything we could have ever hoped for it to be, and more. From the personal connections made, the venues we played, and the audiences we were fortunate enough to meet, Italy stole our hearts (and filled our stomachs)!
Within 24 hours of stepping off the plane in Rome, we had already had two rehearsals and given a recital in Aquileia at the Basilica di Patriarchi for one of the most enthusiastic audiences we have ever encountered. They absolutely loved hearing selections from a wide variety of composition style, from Ravel to Maslanka, and even demanded an encore! What a way to kick off the tour in a stunning, ancient space and an equally incredible acoustic.
From Aquileia, we traveled to Venice for three more performances. On Sunday, we provided the music for two Masses at the Basilica di San Marco both as the Catharsis Winds, and as half of a double quintet in true Renaissance fashion. As classical musicians raised and training within the Western Canon, each of us was personally moved by the experience of performing the music of Gabrieli in the very same loft in the very same basilica from which he he worked and debuted the pieces. The historical significance and weight of the moment was impactful and will never be forgotten. That evening, we gave another recital in the Basilica di Santi Giovanni di Paolo, also in Venice. Another receptive crowd followed by another encore, and we were leaving Venice traveling back to Umbria
Our first day of relaxation found us in Bevagna where we had the chance to explore a jewel of a medieval walled town, catch up on some much needed sleep, and recharge our batteries for the next leg of the journey in Pesaro.
For 4 days, we were in residence at the Conservatorio di Rossini in Pesaro, another incredible city nestled on the Adriatic Sea. Here, we helped to lead the International Music Project's International Wind Ensemble by sitting in the sections alongside students from Carroll University and the Conservatorio di Rossini, and performing a fantastic concert of great wind ensemble repertoire, conducted by Italian and American wind ensemble conductors. While in Pesaro, we gave yet another recital in the Piazzo di Olivieri.
We left Pesaro late after our final concert for a sold out audience in the beautiful town square and drove back to Bevagna, where we stayed the night. The next day, we departed for Todi, a mountainside medieval town, also in the Umbria region. Here were performed in a basilica built by the famed architect, Bernini. With the highest vaulted ceilings any of us have ever seen, and the most intricate, detailed sculpting and design, this church was truly a sight to behold. We performed two concerts in one evening! One as half of a double quintet performing the works of Lully and Gabrieli, and another as Catharsis. The audience was warm and appreciative of our performance. This was a truly special concert for us and the emotion really shone through in the moment.
From here we performed once more, at a private dinner party at a farm outside of Foligno for a crowd of about 50 while the hosts brought out course after course of the freshest food you could imagine. There was no better way to end our tour!
There were countless bowls of pasta consumed, many glasses of incredible wine, and much love shared through the beauty of chamber music! We had the most incredible time and experienced such beauty in each place we went and wherever we performed. We are eternally grateful for the opportunity we have to do what we do, and to spread more beauty all over the globe! Thank you for supporting us and here's to the future!