Reading Nicolò Giuliano’s curriculum is like turning the clock back with so many names from the past that have crossed my path.Andrea Fasano who sent me the link to his programme of a recording of a recital that Giuliano made in the Ravenna Festival in July 2021.Andrea was a young aspiring giornalist who used to frequent many of the musical events at the Ghione Theatre in the Golden era of the 80’s and 90’s.He asked me to listen to this remarkable young man with whom he is collaborating on many interesting musical projects.A young man from Forli who is running a concert series in the name of Guido Agosti.
Leslie Howard who is now mentoring Nicolò Giuliano was Agosti’s favourite student in those years in Siena when the world would flock to hear this legendary musician,a student of Busoni,in his studio at the Chigiana Academy.Sounds were heard in that studio that have never been forgotten by all those that frequented his summer course that he held there for over thirty years.Agosti was born in Forlì and is buried there.On his grave is inscribed simply GUIDO AGOSTI MUSICIAN .The same simplicity and integrity that he dedicated to the great composers he served so faithfully in his long life.
Agosti and his wife Lydia Stix Agosti became family friends and they would come every weekend to our home on the seashore in Sabaudia.Lydia and my wife would spend the day on the beach and leave the Maestro to play duets all day long with me!Beethoven quartets,Brahms Symphony’s and Hungarian Dances.We would preparare an after dinner concert for our wives after their day on the beach!
Lydia even managed to persuade Guido to give a recital in our newly opened theatre.The recording we made of his performance of Beethoven op 110 and 111 is one of the only recordings of this great but very private musician.
Reading on in Giuliano’s curriculum I see he is now studying in Imola with Andrea Gallo.One of the finest musicians I know.I am proud to say he performed several times in his formative years for the Keyboard Trust of which Leslie Howard,Elena Vorotko and I are the artistic directors.He is now second in command at the famous pianistic mecca in Imola.Here is a conversation with him in which he talks about his extraordinary approach to piano playing:https://youtu.be/1TTxiaFESH0
All this to say I was curious to hear how this young man plays!!!!
A superb performance of Schumann’s Kreisleriana which reminded me in so many ways of Bruno Leonardo Gelber.The limpet like hand that dug deep into the notes with absolute legato and could extract a unique velvet sound just as I heard today.Gelber too had a great personality that was evident today in Giuliano’s performance.It was a performance that had so many individual things that it had me delving into the score to see what I had missed for so many years.Always with impeccable good taste but a pianist who has something very personal to say.
Kreisleriana, Op.16, is a composition in eight movements that Schumann claimed to have written in only four days in April 1838 and a revised version appeared in 1850. The work was dedicated to Frederic Chopin but when a copy was sent to him he commented favourably only on the design of the title page.It is a very dramatic work and is viewed by some critics as one of Schumann’s finest compositions.In 1839, soon after publishing it, Schumann called it in a letter “my favourite work,” remarking that “The title conveys nothing to any but Germans. Kreisler is one of E.T.A Hoffmann’s creations, an eccentric, wild, and witty conductor.”In a letter to his wife Clara ,Schumann reveals that she has figured largely in the composition of Kreisleriana:”I’m overflowing with music and beautiful melodies now – imagine, since my last letter I’ve finished another whole notebook of new pieces. I intend to call it Kreisleriana. You and one of your ideas play the main role in it, and I want to dedicate it to you – yes, to you and nobody else – and then you will smile so sweetly when you discover yourself in it.”
Our concert halls are flooded with young pianists with superb technical training usually from the Eastern countries but have no respect for the very precise indications of the composer.Are pianists merely showmen using the composer’s notes as a means to show off their superb technical proficiency?I remember Charles Rosen telling a remarkably trained pianist in a masterclass that he plays like a whore.Karl Ulrich Schnabel told another that he was obviously a composer as he took the notes of great composers to suit himself! Perlemuter too was sent a rough copy of a famous young pianist playing Ravel Valses Nobles and Gaspard .The record company were looking for a quote from a legendary pianist who had studied the works of Ravel with the composer.’Qu’est -ce que c’est che ca’ was Perlemuters innocently ingenuous remark.
All this to say that there is a very fine line for a true interpreter like riding a high wire where if you have the courage to mount it you risk falling either way.It is this risk which made Gilels exclaim that the difference between recorded music and live was like that between fresh food and canned!Giuliano took risks but as a true musician he always had the larger architectural shape in sight.Sometimes his highlighting of inner counterpoints could really illuminate passages but it could also disturb.The only place it disturbed me was in the last movement where Schumann’s own syncopated bass is quite enough over a gently lilting right hand,so any inner counterpoints in the right hand I found disturbing.A very small point but one of the thousands of choices a true interpreter has to make but always starting from the indications left by the composer.Other slight highlighting of an inner voice here and there I found absolutely enlightened,as I used to indeed with Gelber,Moiseiwitch or even Cherkassky.
The opening movement was played immediately with controlled passion with Giuliano’s limpet like fingers extracting velvet rich sonorities from the piano.Maintaining the same tempo for the central episode but completely changing the colour as he allowed the beauty of the melodic line to be suggested over this flowing contour.It was here that subtle tenor counterpoints here and there shone like the jewels of a prism as the light passed over them.There was a beautiful legato to the second where Giuliano had made a definite choice of phrasing which allowed the melodic line to shine above and below this gently moving frame.I loved what he did but sometimes felt the gently flowing accompaniment could have been played even more simply so as not to disturb the ravishing beauty of the melodic line that he had created.The Intermezzo 1 was played with passion and rhythmic control and the Intermezzo 11 had a romantic sweep .It was ,though, the transition to the return of the opening that was remarkable for its sense of line.Giuliano even highlighted inner counterpoints that just clarified his complete understanding of a musical line that in lesser hands can sound like a bit of a ramble!
There was great rhythmic impulse to the third movement and a romantic sweep to the central episode where the soprano and tenor voices comune together so intimately.The fourth movement was played with a luminosity of sound and simplicity as everything was given the time needed to express such deep thoughts,but never losing sight of the overall shape.The gentle lilt to the central episode was even more beautiful for the inner colours that this young artist could so subtly suggest.In particular there was the sumptuous beauty of the cadence before the magical return of the opening theme.The fifth movement was played with a lightweight capricious rhythmic elan but every so often bursting into song like a glimpse of the sun between the clouds.After the passionate central outburst Giuliano added a silence not indicated by Schumann.Could it have been an oversight as it sounded so convincing to me before the return of the opening?Personality and good taste go hand in hand for a true interpreter as do intelligence and musicianship!Ravishing beauty of the sixth where this time the inner tenor notes in the ‘Etwas bewegter’ were indicated by Schumann himself and led to a whispered ending that was pure magic.The seventh is ‘Sehr Rasch’ but how fast is very fast? It is a question for the true interpreter to decide a speed in which the contour of the music can be clearly defined and not overlooked for virtuosistic showmanship!Giuliano chose just the right tempo that allowed the passionate outpouring to be clearly defined and it even gave him time to juggle with the notes between the hands in a very exposed spot well known to all pianists! The sudden interruption of chords ‘Etwas Langsamer’ was played as Schumann implores ,but Giuliano also kept the same colour as before and I have never heard it played with such intelligence as it is merely the coda or a slowed down version of what had come before.I have already mentioned the counterpoints and bass syncopation of the last movement played with such clarity of musical thought and digital precision.
There was also great sweep and passion to the intervening episodes that interrupt this lazy ride into the depths of the piano.A remarkable performance that I recommend all to enjoy in this link :
Après une lecture du Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata (French for After a Reading of Dante: Fantasia quasi Sonata; also known as the Dante Sonata) was completed in 1849. It was first published in 1856 as part of the second volume of the Anne de Pélerinage (Years of Pilgrimage) and was inspired by the reading of Victor Hugo’s poem “Après un lecture du Dante” (1836).It was originally a small piece entitled Fragment after Dante, consisting of two thematically related movements,which Liszt composed in the late 1830s.He gave the first public performance in Vienna in November 1839.When he settled in Weimar in 1849, he revised the work along with others in the volume, and gave it its present title derived from Victor Hugo’s own work of the same name.
Intelligence,virtuosity,showmanship but above all respect for the genius of Liszt all went hand in hand in this remarkable performance that can be enjoyed from this radio performance together with two Rachmaninov Moments Musicaux op 16 an encore and a short interview.This is the link:
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia è protagonista del Concerto di Pasqua 2023 su IMD RADIO/IMD PLAY con la riproposta di un suo bellissimo recital del 2021 che lui stesso presenta e ricorda attraverso una breve intervista a corredo dell’ascolto integrale e senza pause della registrazione che a breve sarà disponibile anche come album discografico. In questa intervista il giovane pianista forlivese anticipa pure alcuni suoi prossimi impegni ed incisioni dedicate alla riscoperta del repertorio strumentale italiano. Questo, intanto, il programma della trasmissione odierna. Robert Schumann: Kreisleriana, op. 16 – Franz Liszt: Dante Sonata – Sergeij Rachmaninoff: Dai 6 “Momenti Musicali” Op. 16; nn. 3 & 4- Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia, pianoforte – Chiesa di S. Massimiliano Kolbe, Lido Adriano (RA), 29 luglio 2021 (per la rassegna “Diapason, percorsi aonori”, I Edizione).
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia was born in Emilia-Romagna: born in 1999, he began studying the piano at the age of 8.
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia boasts over 30 prizes in national and international competitions and more than 50 recitals as a soloist in important institutions and concert halls.
His career starts from 2018 performing with the “Circle Symphony Orchestra” of Padua playing Beethoven concert n.3 Op.37 for piano and orchestra.
In2019 he graduated in piano at the Rimini Conservatory with 110 cum laude.
In 2020 he received recognition at the “Sergio Fiorentino piano competition” which led to a concert in Helsinki for the University piano circle supported by Eero Tarasti.
In 2021 he made his debut at the “Kaunas Piano Festival” obtaining a scholarship to perform at the “M.K. Čiurlionis” from Kaunas. Also in the same year he won the special prize at the Kings Peak International Music Competition obtaining a masterclass with maestro Anthony Tam and the first prize at the Map international Music Competition, which will subsequently give him prize concerts in the USA.
In 2022 he undertook an intense concert activity making his debut not only with the Orchestra of the Conservatory “B.Maderna di Cesena” at the Teatro Verdi in Cesena with 1053 by J.S.Bach, at the Sala “Marco Biagi” in Bologna, at the Circolo Culturale “G. Fantoni” in La Spezia and at the “Music Hall” of the University of musical semiotics in Helsinki, under the invitation of the famous maestro Eero Tarasti.
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia currently attends the piano academy of Imola “Incontri col Maestro” under the guidance of maestro Andrè Gallo and the European piano academy “High musical education” under the guidance of maestro Giuseppe Devastato.
He is artistic director of the “Guido Agosti” concert series as well as president of the “Forlì Cultura” association.
In 2023 he will perform in various European cities such as Rome, Rovereto, Lecco, Umeå, León and Berlin.
“ Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia è un musicista sensibile, dedito e intelligente, il cui pianismo elegante, eloquente e nobile lo colloca tra i migliori giovani artisti del nostro tempo.”
Inizia all’età lo studio del pianoforte sotto la guida del maestro Giancarlo Peroni.
Nel 2020 consegue il diploma di Triennio accademico con il massimo dei voti e la lode, nel 2022 consegue il diploma accademico di secondo livello con il massimo dei voti e lode presso il Conservatorio “B.Maderna” di Cesena.
Nel 2021 studia per un anno all’Accademia di Pinerolo con i maestri Pietro De Maria, Enrico Stellini e Andrea Lucchesini.
Nicoló Giuliano Tuccia attualmente studia all’Accademia “Incontri col maestro” di Imola sotto la guida del Maestro André Gallo e all’Accademia Europea “Alta Formazione” di Napoli con Giuseppe Devastato.
Durante la sua carriera musicale, Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia si perfeziona con vari maestri e tiene masterclass nazionali ed internazionali.
I maestri con cui ha avuto il piacere di perfezionarsi sono: Mauro Minguzzi, Alessandra Ammara, Manila Santini, Giovanni Valentini, Luigi Tanganelli, Riccardo Risaliti, Emanuel Krasovsky, Sergio Tiempo, Inna Faiks, Massimiliano Ferrati, Roberto Cappello, Edith Fischer, Siavush Gadjev, Antonio Pompa – Baldi, Pablo Galdo, Andrea Lucchesini, Giuseppe Albanese, Avedis Kouyoumdijan, Hortense Cartier Bressan, Anthony Tam, Jesus Maria Gomez, Elvin Rodriguez , Francesc Vidal, Andrè Gallo e Giuseppe Devastato.
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia è stato vincitore di premi nazionali e internazionali, piazzandosi sempre ai primi posti.
I concorsi dove si è distinto positivamente sono: “Premio Alberghini” di Castel Maggiore, 1° premio assoluto, “Premio Zangarelli” 1° premio, “Città del Borgo dell’angelo” Concorso 1° premio assoluto, “maria labia prize” 1° premio, “ Map international piano competition“1° premio“concorso pianistico Ugo Amendola 1° premio, Città di San Donà di Piave 2o premio, “Kings Peak International music Competition” 2° premio, vincitore unico premio speciale della sua categoria”, Città di Riccione “2° premio”, Città di Magliano Sabina “2° premio”, “Premio Humberto Quagliata “2° premio”, menzione d’onore al Concorso pianistico online “Sergio Fiorentino” etc
Quest’anno ha vinto la borsa di studio “Rotary Club” di Cesena, vincendo un concerto che lo ha visto protagonista al conservatorio “B.Maderna” di Cesena.
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia ha suonato in rinomate sale da concerto sia come solista che in formazioni cameristiche quali: “Teatro Galli” di Rimini, “Teatro B. D’antona” di Castel Maggiore, “Teatro Alighieri” di Ravenna, “Teatro degli Atti ” di Rimini, “Foyer Respighi” del Teatro Comunale di Bologna, “Sala Corelli” del Teatro Alighieri di Ravenna, “Sala della Prefettura” di Forlì, “Teatro Talia” di Gualdo Tadino, “Circolo degli Ufficiali” di Bologna, “Palazzo Raffaello” di Urbino, Sala “Marco Biagi “di Bologna, Circolo Culturale G.Fantoni della Spezia, Sala “L.Dalla Piccola” di Cesena, “M.K Ciurlionis Museo Nazionale “ di Kaunas, Auditorium “Martin Codax” di Vigo, Aula Magna della Università di Helnsiki, Auditorium della musica di Telki in Ungheria, “Teatro Don Bosco” di Gualdo Tadino etc.
Sono vari festival a cui Nicoló ha preso parte. Tra i tanti ricordiamo: “Misano Piano Festival”, “Ravenna Festival” “Festival della Romagna”, “Festival delle note tra i calanchi” di Bagnoregio “Clivis Umbria” “Kaunas Piano Festival” in Lituania , “Swing Music Fest” in Ungheria, “ Conoscere la musica “ di Bologna, “ Eila’s Piano Circle” di Helsinki , “Pomeriggi Musicali al Fantoni “ di La Spezia , “le Salon de la musique “ etc.
Ha suonato come solista il K414 di W.A.Mozart presso l’istituto musicale Masini, il 3° Concerto di L.V.Beethoven con la “Circus Simphony Orchestra” di Padova, il K413 di W.A.Mozart con l’Orchestra da Camera del Conservatorio di Cesena nella sala del l’Eliseo di Cesena, con i “Musici Malatestiani”, il Concerto BWV1053 di J.S. Bach, al Teatro A.Galli di Rimini, musiche di Antimo D’Agostino con l’Orchestra “Rimini Classica” e con l’Orchestra Giovanile di Faenza il k413 di W.A.Mozart.
Ha avuto il piacere di collaborare con i direttori Stefano Pecci, Raffaele Valentini, Parvi Shejazi, Antonio Raspanti e Jacopo Rivani.
Nicolò Giuliano Tuccia ha pubblicato CD per Movimento Classical, Aulicus Classica eDoppio Movimento music Label.