THE ROBERTO OCCHIPINTI TRIO
Toronto and Waterloo
Francesco Cafiso | Alto Saxophone
Roberto Occhipinti | Bass
Adrean Farrugia | Piano
Ethan Ardelli | Drums
Part of the Columbus Centre Jazz Series
Wednesday, May 31
Doors 7:00PM | Concert 7:30PM
Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery
901 Lawrence Ave W | Toronto ON
Thursday, June 1
Doors 6:30PM | Concert 8:00PM
The Jazz Room
59 King Street North | Waterloo ON
Presented by the Istituto Italiano di Cultura Toronto and Villa Charities, with the support of Davies Spina Falquez LLP
Francesco Cafiso was born in Sicily. He was successful musically from a young age: he played duets with pianist Franco D’Andrea at the 2002 Umbria Jazz Festival, toured Europe with trumpeter Wynton Marsalis at the age of 14, made his playing debut in the United States in 2004, and the following year recorded the album A Tribute to Charlie Parker with orchestral backing. Part of a concert with D’Andrea at the 2002 Pescara Jazz Festival was later released as the album Standing Ovation Pescara. He went on to record the studio album New York Lullaby for Venus Records at the age of 16. This was followed by Portrait in Black and White and Seven Steps to Heaven, which were quartet albums for the same label. He recorded his eighth album as leader, Angelica, at the age of 19; it was released by CAM Jazz. In 2011, Verve Records released his Moody’n, which was bebop-based and was judged by some critics to be well executed.
For the following three years, Cafiso did not record and toured much less than before. He re-emerged with a new band that was influenced by Sicilian music yet retained jazz sensibilities and released the three-CD recording 3. Much of the music was written by Cafiso, which was also a change from his earlier career. He attributed some of his musical change to switching from a Selmer Mark VI to a Selmer Reference 54: “The new saxophone is more rigid. It doesn’t respond immediately. In looking how to adjust my playing to this new instrument, I found my new sound.”
Born in Toronto, bassist Roberto Occhipinti is a well-established presence in the Canadian and International Jazz scene. A 5-time Juno-awarded musician, he is equally at home playing classical music as well as jazz and world music. In addition to leading his own groups with 6 recordings under his name, he has performed, toured and recorded with Jane Bunnett, Hilario Duran, Jamey Haddad, Jovino Santos Neto, Don Byron, Jeff Coffin, Uri Caine, Bob Mintzer, Enrico Rava, Stefano Bollani, Benny Golson and Dafnis Prieto. As a classical musician, Roberto Occhipinti has performed with virtually every classical music ensemble in Toronto and has been a member of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Hamilton Philharmonic, and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra. In the field of contemporary music, he was principal bassist with the Esprit Orchestra for eight years, a member of Arraymusic for more than two decades, and performed with New Music Concerts. As a classical music producer, Occhipinti has worked on projects for the Gryphon Trio, Double Bass Virtuoso, Joel Quarrington, Quartetto Gelato, Annex String Quartet and the Las Vegas Young Artists Orchestra. As a Jazz Music Producer, he has produced recordings by Dave Young, Dafnis Prieto, Lorne Lofsky, Michael Occhipinti, Toronto Jazz Big Band, Composer’s Big Band, Manuel Valera and Hilario Duran. In addition to his work as bassist producer, Roberto Occhipinti founded a record label Modica Music with over 20 recordings of jazz, classical and world music artists. Notable recent projects include music director for the Pan Am Games orchestra with soloists Danilo Perez, John Patitucci and Brian Blade, European tours with Hilario Duran Trio as well as tours and residencies with his own quartet in Italy and the USA.
Award-winning pianist and composer Adrean Farrugia is one of Canada’s most distinct voices on the piano. Since the late 1990s, Adrean has been in high demand as a freelance performer and educator. Keeping a busy touring schedule, mainly as a sideman, Adrean has toured extensively across Canada and the United States, as well as in venues across Europe, Australia, the UK, Israel and Japan. Adrean has performed/recorded with some of jazz’s greatest and most diverse artists including: Ernie Watts, Adam Nussbaum, Larry Carlton, Curtis Fuller, Tom Scott, Bob Brookmeyer, Randy Brecker, Eric Alexander, Cyrille Aimee, Molly Johnson, Jane Bunnett, Ron Blake, Joel Frahm, Matt Penman, Dafnis Prieto, Kinan Azmeh, Brad Goode, Kenny Wheeler, Darcy James Argue, Don Thompson, Lorne Lofsky, Kevin Turcotte, and Pat Labarbera. Adrean currently performs/has performed with such diverse projects as saxophone legend Ernie Watts’ Band, the Matt Dusk Band, the Brad Goode Group (featuring Ernie Watts and Adam Nussbaum), The Ernesto Cervini group Turboprop (featuring saxophonist Joel Frahm), The Johnny Griffith Quintet, Heather Bambrick, Marito Marques, Violinist Drew Jurecka, Kiki Misumi, Tim Shia’s ‘The Worst Pop Band Ever’, the Bob Brough Quartet, Avery Raquel, and the Darcy Hepner Big Band. As a leader, Adrean has released four albums. His second album ‘Ricochet’ was nominated for a 2011 Juno award for best contemporary jazz recording. As a composer, Adrean has penned more than 30 works to date.
Drummer and composer Ethan Ardelli has been one of Canada’s most acclaimed jazz musicians for more than a decade. Always a cultural omnivore, Ardelli has sought out inspiration in a wide variety of places, from art house films to classical composition and music from around the world, in particular the music of Cuba. After playing in many notable Canadian bands (David Virelles, Brian Dickinson, Nancy Walker, and Darren Sigesmund), Ardelli was primed to become a bandleader. Since 2014, Ethan has been leading his own ensemble showcasing his original compositions. The quartet features saxophonist Luis Deniz, pianist Chris Donnelly, and bassist Devon Henderson. His debut album, The Island of Form, is a showcase for Ardelli’s highly developed compositional skills and drumming prowess. The album was recorded by James Farber, the engineer behind many touchstone jazz recordings, including works by Michael Brecker, Joe Lovano, and Brad Mehldau. As well as leading his own ensemble, Ethan is a member of the Darren Sigesmund Quintet, Nancy Walker Quintet, Alexander Brown Sextet, Brian Dickinson Trio, and the Harley Card Quintet. Ethan is on faculty at the University of Toronto as well as the Humber College Community Music Program.