Fabrizio Festa

(b. 1960, Bormio).

Italian composer of mostly stage, orchestral, chamber, choral, and jazz works that have been performed throughout the world; he is also active as a jazz pianist.

Mr. Festa studied piano as a child. He later studied arrangement, composition and piano with Franco D'Andrea, Giancarlo Gazzani and Enrico Pieranunzi at the Siena Jazz Workshop in the late 1970s and privately with Mal Waldron in Munich in 1981–82. He also studied composition and jazz arrangement with Ettore Ballotta at the Conservatorio Giovanni Battista Martini in Bologna from 1978–81.

His music has been performed in Argentina, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, China, Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Iran, Italy, Lebanon, Mexico, the Netherlands, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the UK, and the USA. He has received commissions from numerous theatres in Italy, including the Teatro Comunale in Bologna, the Teatro dell'Opera in Rome, the Teatro Massimo in Palermo, and the Teatro Municipale Valli in Reggio Emilia.

As a jazz pianist, he co-founded with Maurizio Bozzi the jazz band Festa Group in 1979 and has served as its director and pianist since 1979, with which he has toured Europe and made two appearances at the Montreux Jazz Festival. The Festa Group made its début in the USA in 2000.

He is also active in other positions. He has served as artistic director of the competition 2 Agosto in Bologna since 1995 and of the Teatro della Fortuna in Fano since 2002. He founded the collective Auranova in 2002. He has also served as artistic consultant to the concert society Musica Insieme in Bologna since 1989 and served as artistic consultant to the contemporary company Aterballetto in 2002 and as artistic consultant for programmes of contemporary music to the Teatro Comunale in Bologna from 2005–07, for which he has given regular lectures on music since 2007. In addition, he collaborates regularly as a writer with the newspaper La Repubblica and the magazine Opera and has served as editor of the magazine Musica Insieme since 1990.

He has taught arrangement and orchestration at the Conservatorio Giovanni Battista Martini since 2001 and has served as assistant to the chair of the history of modern and contemporary theatre at the Discipline delle Arti, della Musica e dello Spettacolo at the Facoltà di Lettere e Filosofia of the Università degli Studi in Bologna since 2001.


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COMPLETE LIST OF WORKS (note that the composer uses 'E' instead of 'Op.'; dates unavailable for jazz compositions)


Viaggio nel paese degli Houyhnhnm (music-theatre work, text by Paolo Billi, after Jonathan Swift), speaker, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn/trumpet, bassoon, piano, E12, 1993

Gulliver (music-theatre work, text by Paolo Billi, after Jonathan Swift), speaker, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, E15, 1994 (a concert suite was arranged, E14)

Il Piccolo Hans (music-theatre work, text by the composer), speaker, 2 flutes, 2 harps, celesta, E29, 1995

Iqbal apologo in musica (music-theatre work, text by Paolo Billi), speaker, oboe (+ English horn), clarinet (+ bass clarinet), violin, bass guitar, piano, E31, 1995

Il Volo (chamber opera, libretto by Paolo Billi), soprano, speaker, oboe (+ English horn), clarinet (+ bass clarinet), violin, bass guitar, piano, E33, 1995

Ero e Leandro (lyric drama, text by Marcello Fois, after Christopher Marlowe), soprano, mezzo-soprano, tenor, baritone, speaker, small orchestra (12 players), E63, 1997

Tanit (musical drama, texts by Marcello Fois, Valerio Evangelisti), 2 actors, electronic keyboard, fixed media, E87, 2000

Gelsomino (music-theatre work, text by Gianni Rodari), speaker, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, E101, 2002

Il Lungo Pranzo di Natale (monologue in 4 parts, text by Giuseppe Liotta, after Thornton Wilder), speaker, orchestra, E105, 2002


Suite in sol, cello, string orchestra, E11, 1993

Suite in do, violin, string orchestra, E22, 1994 (also version for flute, string orchestra, E22-bis, 1996)

Lune d'Inverno (text by Paolo Billi), speaker ad libitum, violin, small orchestra, E34, 1995 (also version as Iqbal Suite, violin, small orchestra, E34-bis, 1995–97)

Movida, large orchestra, E54, 1996

La Via Lattea (concerto), piano, large orchestra, E55, 1997

Concerto, string orchestra, E61, 1997

Suite in fa, clarinet/soprano saxophone, string orchestra, E66, 1998 (also version as Closed skies and Urban Dreams, clarinet, string orchestra, E66-bis, 2006)

Un Angelo alla luce del giorno (concerto), flute, large orchestra, E78, 1999

Ricercare della luce e della tenebra, string orchestra, E81, 2000

Verdissimo, large orchestra, E96, 2001

Kite Songs, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, large orchestra, E103, 2002

Pegasus, flute, string orchestra, E113, 2003

Tre Divertissements, small orchestra, E119–21, 2004 (its three sections may be performed separately: Roma Variations, E119; Tafel-music, E120; Kramerata, E121)

Sirene, small orchestra, E130, 2005

The Path beyond the Rocks, E136, 2005 (also version as Nomads, small orchestra, E136-bis, 2006)

Variazioni su un tema improprio, E145, 2006


Piccola serenata, cello, piano, E3, 1989

Trio-Divertissement, French horn, violin, piano, E4, 1990

Preludio e Aria, trumpet, organ, E9, 1992

Toccata in mi, cello, E13, 1993

Gulliver, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, E14, 1994 (concert suite from stage work)

Cinque Serenate, violin, cello, E16, 1994

Canto per il sonno dei bambini, oboe, organ, E18, 1994 (also version for oboe, English horn, French horn, piano, E18-bis, 1994)

Toccata in la, cello, piano, E19, 1994

Bandiere, 2 oboes, 2 French horns, E20, 1994

Collage No. 1, 2 oboes, 2 French horns, piano, E21, 1994

Cinque Danze, French horn, trumpet, piano, E24, 1994

Sonata in la, cello, piano, E25, 1994

Quattro Pezzi, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, E26, 1994

Per la pace perpetua, French horn, 2 trumpets, trombone, tuba, E27, 1994

Toccata e Ricercare, oboe, organ, E28, 1994

Preludio, Aria e Finale, flute/violin, cello, piano, E30, 1995

Introitus, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, French horn, E38, 1996

Tre Capricci, violin, E39, 1996 (also expanded as Cinque Capricci, E39-bis, 1996–97)

Al vento, violin, piano/harpsichord, E56, 1996

La Mer est ton miroir, 2 flutes, 2 harps, celesta, E57, 1996

Al mare, clarinet, piano, E59, 1997

Paesaggi, guitar, E60, 1997

Trio, clarinet/violin, cello, piano, E62, 1997

Skyscrapers, flute, piano, E65, 1997

Iqbal Trio, clarinet, violin, piano, E67, 1998

Viaggiatore insonne, string quartet, E68, 1998

Cuerpo de mujer, clarinet, harp, E70, 1998 (also versions for flute, harp, E70-bis, 1999; flute, guitar, E70-tris, 2001)

Confinia noctis, flute, harp, viola, E71, 1998

Sonata, viola, piano, E74, 1999

Libera toccata prima, clarinet, E76, 1999 (also version for alto saxophone, E76-bis, 2000)

Volpe la bella, flute, clarinet (+ bass clarinet), violin, viola, cello, piano, percussion, E77, 1999

Una Nuvola è caduta, clarinet, ensemble (flute, clarinet, piano, percussion, 2 violins, viola, cello), E79, 1999

Libera toccata seconda, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, E80, 1999

Tre Toccate pittoriche, string quartet, E82, 2000

Libera toccata terza, 6 clarinets, 2 bass clarinets, E83, 2000

Wings in the light, flute, clarinet, cello, piano, E84, 2000 (version of jazz work)

Enjoy, string quartet, E85, 2000 (also versions for flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, E85-bis, 2000; 4 saxophones, E85-tris, 2002)

After the rain, soprano saxophone, piano, E88, 2000

Rossini Variations, clarinet, piano, 2 violins, viola, cello, double bass, E90, 2001

Specchi, guitar, piano, E92, 2001

Omnia mutantur, bass clarinet, soprano saxophone, piano, E93, 2001

Agalmata nuktos, clarinet, violin, piano, synthesizer, fixed media, E94, 2001

Preludi, flute/2 flutes, E95, 2001

At the beginning, flute, clarinet, electric guitar, synthesizer, accordion, E97, 2001

At the end, flute, clarinet, electric guitar, synthesizer, accordion, E97-bis, 2001

Clownerie, clarinet, accordion, E99, 2002 (also version for alto saxophone, accordion, E99-bis, 2002)

Libera toccata quarta, marimba, E100, 2002

Libera toccata quinta, harp, E102, 2002

Miles to run, flute, violin, piano, E104, 2002 (also version as Miles for five, flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, E117, 2004)

Omnia Bismuta, clarinet, cello, piano, E106, 2003

Omnia Trismuta, clarinet, bassoon, piano, E107, 2003

Americana prima, flute, oboe, clarinet, violin, cello, double bass, piano, percussion, E112, 2003

Cassandra, bass clarinet, soprano saxophone, cello, piano, drum kit, E114, 2003

Uròburos, flute, clarinet, bassoon, French horn, 2 violins, viola, cello, double bass, E115, 2003

Urban Dances, electric 5-string viola, fixed media, E116, 2003

Omnia Tetranuta, clarinet, alto saxophone, piano, E118, 2004

New Lands, No Borders (text by Michael Hall), clarinet, cello, piano, synthesizer, fixed media, E123, 2004

Americana seconda, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, violin, viola, cello, double bass, piano, percussion, E124, 2004

Forget Me Not, flute, violin, E125, 2004

Take the wind, B-flat trumpet, fixed media, E126, 2004

Sortilegi, flute, E127, 2005

Rappin' the Blues, violin, piano, E128, 2005

Clandestino songs, piano, percussion, E132, 2005 (also version of first movement as Clandestino, E133)

Voglio fare il gentiluomo, harp, accordion, E134, 2005

Hibakusha, violin, viola, cello, E135, 2005

Alla memoria, guitar, E137, 2006

Salatarello, synthesizer, percussion, E139, 2006

Ma-zork, synthesizer, percussion, E140, 2006

Op-galup, synthesizer, percussion, E141, 2006

Variazioni a memoria, cello, piano, E143, 2006

Windows (tre pezzi), cello, E144, 2006

Clouds and Birds, alto saxophone, piano, E146, 2007

Revolution, 4 saxophones, E148, 2007


Ad immagine e somiglianza (text by the composer), soprano, female chorus, large orchestra, E32, 1995

Digna Laude, mixed chorus, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, French horn, E37, 1996

Vera erant, female chorus, E75, 1999

Savino (text by Evelina Santangelo), mixed chorus, piano 4 hands, E98, 2002


Hymnus (text by John Donne), soprano, organ, E2, 1989

Suite in re (text by Generoso De Blasi), soprano, orchestra, E5, 1992

Tre Canti (texts by Arthur Rimbaud, Gabriele D'Annunzio, Pier Paolo Pasolini), soprano, orchestra, E7, 1992

La Vita (text by Sandro Penna), soprano, piano, E8, 1992

Album americano (texts by Wallace Stevens, Vachel Lindsay, Robert Frost), soprano, alto saxophone, bass guitar, piano, drum kit, E10, 1992

Che farò quando trenta primavere... (text by Gianluca Braschi), soprano, string quartet, E23, 1994

Dulce lumen (text by the composer), soprano, piano, E35, 1995

Quando ci conosceremo (text by Marcello Fois), soprano, string quartet, E40, 1996

Fino a perdere il respiro (text by Marcello Fois), baritone, string quartet, E41, 1996

Forse ancora non sapete (text by Marcello Fois), soprano, string quartet, E42, 1996

Di un albero il ramo (text by the composer), soprano, E43, 1996

In alto svetto (text by the composer), soprano/countertenor, synthesizer, E44, 1996

Ma toccare il cielo non posso (text by the composer), soprano, synthesizer, E45, 1996

D'Aria alato (text by the composer), soprano, E46, 1996

Vicino e lontano (text by the composer), soprano, synthesizer, E47, 1996

Forse davvero (text by Marcello Fois), soprano, piano, E48, 1996

Nebbie (text by Carlo Vitali, after Leonardo da Vinci), soprano, piano, E58, 1996

Un Passo per l'altro (text by the composer), soprano, string quartet, E64, 1997

Laudes (cantata, text by the composer), soprano, speaker, small orchestra, E69, 1998

Laudes puerorum (cantata profana, text by the composer), soprano, speaker, oboe (+ English horn), clarinet (+ bass clarinet), violin, cello, piano, E72, 1998

Sandaliotim (text by the composer), speaker, soprano saxophone (+ alto saxophone), bass guitar, piano, drum kit, orchestra, E86, 2000

Dolce la luce (text by the composer), soprano, flute, oboe, clarinet, violin, cello, E89, 2000

Compieta (text by Marcello Fois), soprano, flute, clarinet, violin, bass guitar, piano, synthesizer, E91, 2001

My Ikon (text by Michael Hall), soprano, string quartet, E122, 2004

Voices Reborn (text by Michael Hall), soprano, flute, clarinet, string orchestra, E131, 2005

Clandestino (vocalise), soprano, trumpet, large orchestra, E133, 2005 (version of first movement of Clandestino songs, E132)

A peaceful dawn (text by the composer), soprano, flute, oboe, clarinet, piano, drum kit, 2 violins, viola, cello, E138, 2006

La Prosperità del vizio (text compiled by the composer, after Donatien-Alphonse-François, Comte de Sade [Italian translation], Giordano Bruno, St. Hildegard of Bingen [Italian translation], Andreas Capellanus, Bernard de Gordon [Italian translation], Ioan Petru Culianu [Italian translation]), female speaker, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, E142, 2006

Nessuno è il mio nome (text by the composer, after Jules Verne), male speaker, clarinet (+ bass clarinet), Electronic Wind Instrument, electronic keyboard, fixed media, E147, 2007


Tre Preludi, E36, 1996

In un sol giorno, E73, 1999

Bach is cruising through interstellar space, E108, 2003

IperboleLibera toccata ottava, E129, 2005

Quasi un Tango, piano 4 hands, E149, 2007


Toccata, Recitativo e Aria, E1, 1989

Toccata e Ricercare, E17, 1994

Preludio per il mare d'inverno, E111, 2003


Quando ci conosceremo (text by Marcello Fois), E49, 1996

Prima dell'arcobaleno (text by the composer), E50, 1996

Buio (text by Marcello Fois), E51, 1996

In città piovono angeli (text by the composer), E52, 1996

La Verità su Leonardo (text by Marcello Fois), E53, 1996

Poesia e Musica (text by an unknown poet), 1997

Il Tamburino sardo (text by Marcello Fois), 2001


Per non dimenticare, E6, 1992 (Massimo Martelli)



Before the ending winter

Bird's occupation's gone

Birds at dawn

Birds cover the moon

Birds cover the sun

Congo Square

Don't forget a lullaby (collaboration with Maurizio Bozzi)

Dragon's flags


Evening song

Every one of us (collaboration with Maurizio Bozzi)

Flying sharks attack birds over the sea

Highway ramblin'

Pax hominibus

Prince of the birds

Queen of the birds

Running on the waves


Il Sole dietro le colline

South Pacific stars

Swinging lake

Thea smiles

Thea's lullaby

Toy piece

Twilight birds are watching through our windows

Wings in the light (also version for flute, clarinet, cello, piano, E84)