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Umberto Pedraglio is an avant-garde and eclectic musician in the contemporary Italian panorama. His experimental composition features great thematic wealth, timbral exploration, rhythmic expressivity and is inspired by the discovery of new aesthetic forms.

…an experienced and sensitive musician, he perfectly combines the best qualities of the performer with the imagination of an inspired author…

(Ivan Fedele, composer)

“Umberto Pedraglio’s sound visions, with a subtle fascination, oscillates among daily reality, mythical splendour and our unconscious psyche’s darkness.”

(Gino Ceccarelli, art critic)

Born in Como in 1978, he studied cello with Enrico Bronzi, Giovanni Sollima, Giovanni Gnocchi, Stefano Cerrato, Guido Boselli and Siegfried Palm. He graduated in Composition under the tutelage of Ivan Fedele and Carlo Ballarini, pursuing his studies with Azio Corghi and Alessandro Solbiati. He took part in international masterclasses with Wolfgang Rihm, George Benjamin, Stefano Gervasoni, Jean-Claude Risset, Anders Hillborg, João Pedro Oliveira and Claudio Ambrosini. He specialized under Ivan Fedele’s baton at Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia in Rome. 

He collaborated, also as a soloist and principal cellist, among different Italian orchestras, performing around Italy and Europe. 2012 was the year of his debut wearing both the cellist’s and the composer’s hat at the Auditorium Parco della Musica in Rome, followed by his participation, always wearing both hats, at many italian festivals and seasons.

Some of his compositions have been performed by famous artists (Marco Rizzi, Salvatore Accardo, Massimo Quarta, Enrico Bronzi, Giovanni Sollima, Paolo Beschi, Sandro Laffranchini, Matias de Oliveira Pinto, Stefano Cerrato, Fernando Caida Greco, Maria Grazia Bellocchio, Floris Onstwedder, Alda Caiello, Alessia Nadin, Lorenzo Passerini, Lorenzo Donati, Alessandro Cadario), by various instrumental ensembles and orchestras (Orchestra Sinfonica di Milano, London Sinfonietta, Orchestra Sinfonica T. Schipa di Lecce, Orchestra Milano Classica, Orchestra A. Vivaldi, Chamber Orchestra Franz Terraneo, Dèdalo Ensemble, Modern Art Ensemble, UT Ensemble Vocale-Consonante, Quartetto Indaco, On The Bridge Cello Ensemble, New Made Ensemble, Alt(r)e Frequenze, Ensemble Novecento, Duo Tubi & Corde) and broadcast by radios and televisions, among which Rai5, CNBC-Sky, Stingray Classica, Euroclassical, Radio Classica and RaiRadio3.

Among the latest productions there are the realization of a Suite for sculpture-cellos (invisible cello, silk cello, aluminium cello, hay cello, cardboard cello, plastic tube-cello), the realization of a theatre project, with texts by the italian poet Alessandro Quattrone (Premio Montale winner prize in 1994), the realization of a special program for two cellos (Dialogues in time – baroque and contemporary cello) in a duo with the baroque cellist Paolo Beschi, a commission by the Venice Biennale for the 60th Festival Internazionale di Musica Contemporanea, the commission for cello dedicated to Enrico Bronzi, Giovanni Sollima and Sandro Laffranchini (principal cello at Teatro alla Scala), the commission of symphonic scores for Orchestra Antonio Vivaldi, plus a number of recordings for Brilliant, Tactus, EMA Vinci and Sconfinarte.  

His music has been performed and is regularly included in the billboards of musical seasons and in the programs of festivals, concert halls and musical institutions in Italy and abroad, such as: Biennale di Venezia Festival Internazionale di Musica Contemporanea, Konzerthaus Berlin, Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia – Auditorium Parco della Musica di Roma, Amici del Loggione del Teatro alla Scala di Milano, Stagione del Teatro Sociale di Como, Stagione Sinfonica dell’Orchestra Antonio Vivaldi, Serate Musicali – Sala Verdi di Milano, Festival Violoncellistico Internazionale Alfredo Piatti,  Festival de Violoncelos de Ouro Branco, Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Berlino, Fondazione Accademia Musicale Chigiana, Stagione Concertistica dell’Accademia Musicale Pescarese, Festival Internazionale Settimane Barocche di Brescia, Stagione Milano Classica, Trame Sonore Chamber Music Festival, Konzerte der Landesakademie Ochsenhausen, SIAE Classici di Oggi, Festival 5 Giornate, Festival A Due Voci, Festival Contrasti, Milano Suona Contemporanea, Stagione degli Amici della Musica di Sondalo, Stagione Sinfonica dell’Orchestra di Lecce, Teatro dal Verme di Milano, Festival Autunno Musicale, Lecco Classica and many others.

Founder and creator of the Como Contemporary Festival – International Contemporary Music and Other Arts Festival – since 2016 he’s the artistic director of Associazione Culturale Polifonie in Como, through which he promotes the diffusion of contemporary music, also among young people and emerging artists. He teaches Composition at Conservatorio di Musica “A. Boito” in Parma and at Conservatorio di Musica “G.Donizetti” in Bergamo. Since 2012, he has been teaching in a cello masterclass every year at Landesakademie für die Musizierende Jugend in Ochsenhausen, one of the most important musical academies for young musicians in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. Umberto plays a period cello dating back to the late 1700s by Pierre Auguste Mauchand.

All of his works are published by Edizioni Musicali Sconfinarte.