Carlo MezzanotteCarlo Mezzanotte

An eclectic pianist/composer who has recorded with such diverse musicians as Lester Bowie and Frank Gambale, plus a few Italian jazz and pop stars, Carlo Mezzanotte has touched most branches of music, but with jazz always at the center of his interests.

Born in Rome in 1959. Studied piano at the Rome conservatory. Private composition studies with several teachers, the most important being Gino Marinuzzi. Later, studied contemporary music with Vinko Globokar at the Fiesole Music Academy. Got interested in jazz and played with groups and big bands in Italy and abroad. Jazz studies with jazz pianist Mike Melillo, formerly of the Phil Woods quartet.

Among the most important collaborations in jazz: Lester Bowie, Frank Gambale, Al DiMeola, Maurizio Giammarco, Umberto Fiorentino, Paolo Fresu, Javier Girotto, Sandro Satta, Dario Deidda and many others. In the pop field, Paolo Conte, Mauro Pagani, Enzo Gragnaniello, Eugenio Bennato, Indaco, Banco.

From 1982 to 1986 worked mainly in theatre productions with some of Italy’s leading companies as composer, arranger and pianist. Wrote two short musicals, staged by the MTM company.
In 1985-86 as leader of the modern jazz group “Relapse” writes and arranges the whole of its repertoire. The group records an album.
In 1988 is pianist and stage director for the concert/stage play “Satierik”, based on Erik Satie’s music and writings.
In 1991 is a founding member of the contemporary music group “Diacronic Ensemble”. Wrote several pieces for it and won 1st prize at the Stresa International Competition and 2nd prize at the Lamezia National Competition. The repertory goes from Stockhausen and Cage to original material.
In 1993 formed the electric jazz group “Syntaxis”; again, writes and arranges all the music for the group, which has recorded the CDs “Visibile” (1997),  “Cieli Diversi” (2000), and “La Linea” (2006). A fourth CD is in the works. To be called “Lighter”, it features guitar great Frank Gambale, soprano sax virtuoso Javier Girotto, and other guests.
In 1994 was composer and performer in “Il ritorno alla ragione”, a performance of electronic music based on the surrealistic short films of Man Ray. The performance has been repeated in several occasions.
With the etno-rock group “Indaco” toured extensively on keyboards/programming from 1995 to 2005. The group recorded four successful CDs, “Vento del deserto” (1997), “Amorgos” (1999), the live “Spezie” (2000), and “Terra Maris” (2003), plus the compilation “Porte D’Oriente” (2006).
In May 1996 performed at Rome’s Teatro Argentina in a series of evenings produced by the Italian National Theater as electronic music improviser (on synthesizers) over readings and dance by some of Italy’s leading performers. The experience is repeated in May ’97.
In 1997 a short film by director Mauro Paracini, “Al(L)ways Night”, for which he wrote and recorded the score, won the National Film and TV Critics’ Award.
In November 1999 is called to compose and perform (live on synthesizers) the soundtrack for the Italian premiere of “South”, an extraordinary documentary about Robert Shackelton’s Antartic expedition of 1914, recently restored by the British Film Institute.
In 1999 recorded “Bach to the Future”, a CD of Baroque music plus original compositions, played on both piano and synthesizers.

In the last decade, in addition to pursuing the Syntaxis project, gave birth to several acoustic jazz projects: “Piano Possibile” (trio), with the self-named album on the German YVP label; “Jazz Tales” (quartet); with self-named CD published by Wide Sound, “Northward Flight” on the Terre Sommerse label, a series of concerts about Cole Porter’s songs in re-elaborated versions; duo concerts with singer Marina De Santis; piano solo concerts; seminars about various topics in jazz. Also, increased his teaching activity, especially in the jazz field.
In 2005, in the live album “Midsummer Night in Sardinia”, the great guitarist Al DiMeola recorded the song “Amargura”, written originally for the Indaco album “Terra Maris”. DiMeola also used the song as the opening of his live concerts in the tour he did with singer Andrea Parodi, who sadly died the following year.

VARIOUS
Played in New York (Lincoln Center), Los Angeles, Buenos Aires and Argentina, Tokyo, London, Rotterdam and in all the important Italian cities. Appeared in all of Italy’s principal public and private TV networks.
Wrote music for all kinds of classical and jazz ensembles.
Among the most recognized pieces in the contemporary music field:
“Rewind” for saxophone quartet and electronic music; first performed at the 12th World Saxophone Congress, Montreal, Canada, July 2000
“Introduzione e Danza” for clarinet and piano; first performed at the Discoteca di Stato in Rome, December 1999
“Quaderno D’Autunno” for vibraphone, piano and double bass; first performed at the Rotterdam Conservatory in February 1994
“Lascia che ti prenda la mano…” for double bass and electronics; first performed at Teatro dell’Orologio, Rome, 1993
Has toured as a pianist and composer with Anita Bucchi’s modern dance company for two seasons.
Has written music for RAI (the Italian state television) and has appeared on all major national media networks.