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Laura Campisi "Italian Jazz" feat Michael and Roberto Occhipinti



Laura Campisi

The Istituto Italiano di Cultura is pleased to host the concert "Italian Jazz" by Laura Campisi feat. Michael Occhipinti (guitar) and Roberto Occhipinti (bass)

"Italian Jazz" is a musical project designed by Italian-born singer and songwriter Laura Campisi to share the rich patrimony of the Italian songbook with the North American audience and to provide a contemporary image of Italy and its culture. The repertoire embraces Italian songs from the 1960’s to the present and revisits them through the fine lens of Jazz, combining intimate arrangements and intense Latin-inspired rhythms. Songs include evergreens such as Nel blu dipinto di blu (Volare), and Parole parole, as well as hidden gems that promise to produce even more Italian aficionados - L’appuntamento by Ornella Vanoni and Mi sono innamorato di te by songwriter Luigi Tenco, just to name a few. More recent compositions by Vinicio Capossela, Cristina Dona’, and a few originals by Campisi are also featured in order to reflect Italy's contemporary music scene.

About Laura Campisi
An award-winning songwriter and jazz singer from Sicily, Italy and based in New York since 2011, Laura has performed with various musical ensembles throughout Europe, America and Canada, and continues to produce a wide range of music: from Jazz and Folk, to the traditional Sicilian repertoire as well as Italian and Mediterranean songs. She also writes original compositions in English, Italian and Sicilian, and sings in Italian, English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, Punjabi, Sicilian and Neapolitan. In 2017 Laura has released her debut album Double Mirror that was welcomed with high praises by the international press and included in the Best of 2017 by both Cadence Magazine and All About Jazz. Laura Campisi was featured in the 2018 Luminato Festival’s production of the Ward Cabaret alongside Associate Music Director Michael Occhipinti, and will join his Sicilian Project at the 2018 Waterdown Festival, also featuring bassist Roberto Occhipinti.

Roberto Occhipinti
Bassist, composer, producer, Roberto Occhipinti came from a musical family that includes guitarists Michael (his younger brother) and David (a cousin). At the University of Toronto, beginning in 1972, he studied under Thomas Monohan; he was also mentored by David Young and Joel Quarrington. Occhipinti was a member of the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra (1976-8), Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra (1980-5) and Canadian Opera Company Orchestra (1984-9). In the field of contemporary music, he was principal bassist with the Esprit Orchestra (1986-94) and a member of Arraymusic (1979-2000).

One of a small number of musicians who have had successful careers in both classical music and jazz, in 1997 Occhipinti began working with Cuban expatriate jazz pianist Hilario Durán, recording Killer Tumbao (1997), Habana Nocturna (1999), Havana Remembered (2001), New Danzon (2004) and From The Heart (2006). These recordings brought him into contact with saxophonist Jane Bunnett. He toured with her and appeared on three of her recordings: Ritmo and Soul (2000), Alma de Santiago (2001) and Cuban Odyssey (2003). He also performed with his brother's band, NOJO; the Toronto-based sextet, Soul Stew; Gorillaz; and Damon Albarn's Mali Music. His jazz quintet toured extensively in 2006.

In addition to performing, Occhipinti has been a producer for artists including Durán, Dafnis Prieto, The Gryphon Trio, Quartetto Gelato and Shurum Burum Jazz Circus, and a music supervisor and orchestra contractor for films and commercials.

Michael Occhipinti

Guitarist and arranger An eight-time Juno Award nominee for Best Contemporary Jazz Album, guitarist/composer Michael Occhipinti’s modern and eclectic approach to jazz and creative music of all kinds has earned him a broad array of listeners and the respect of critics and musicians alike. As a leader of the acclaimed jazz orchestra NOJO, his own quintet, and The Sicilian Project, Michael has established himself as an inventive composer and arranger, and his recording Creation Dream – The Songs of Bruce Cockburn remains a favourite instrumental jazz recording among critics and fans. Chasing After Light, Michael’s 2008 JUNO nominated recording, features the same stellar quintet of musicians heard on Creation Dream. This new recording departs from the songs of Bruce Cockburn by showcasing Michael’s original compositions and by showing off a broad palette of guitar sounds, including a particularly impassioned solo that one critic praised as “face melting.” Blending a variety of folk sounds (Cuban music, African blues, and a beautiful Bruce Cockburn inspired acoustic guitar composition) with a modern melodic approach to jazz improvisation, Chasing After Light was recently praised bythe CBC’s Errol Nazereth as one of the best jazz recordings of 2007.


OUTDOOR CONCERT (Weather permitting)

free admission


Date: Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Time: At 6:30 pm

Organized by : Istituto Italiano di Cultura

Entrance : Free


Istituto Italiano di Cultura | 496 Huron Street


Laura Campisi Italian Jazz


Laura Campisi Italian Jazz feat. Michael Occhipinti (guitar) and Roberto Occhipinti (bass)