Virtuoso pianist and Chopin International Piano Competition award-winner Calogero Di Liberto will perform at 7:30 p.m., Jan. 11, 2012, in Cullen Hall at the University of St. Thomas.
The Italian concert pianist is acknowledged for his warm musicianship, technical prowess, and wide range of repertoire. Currently Di Liberto is professor of piano at the Istituto Musicale “Vincenzo Bellini” in Caltanissetta, Italy. The concert is being sponsored by Houston’s Italian Cultural and Community Center in collaboration with University of St Thomas.
His program will include Schubert’s Impromptu op.142 no. 3, Chopin’s Etudes op. 25, Mephisto Waltz by Liszt, the Pagannini/Liszt La campanella, as well as selections from Puccini, Tchaikowsky and Strauss.
In addition to winning the grand prize in the 1995 Chopin competition in Corpus Christi, Di Liberto also won the 2001 Concurso International Compositores de Espana in Madrid.
Di Liberto maintains an active performance schedule in Europe and the United States. He has performed at Carnegie Hall and Columbia University in New York; Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.; the Shepherd School of Music in Houston in the U.S.; the Grosser Saal, Wiener Saal and the Solitär of the Mozarteum in Salzburg in Germany; the Ferenc Liszt’s Academy in Budapest; the Music Conservatory in Ciudad Real, Spain; Bocconi University in Milan and the Teatro Politeama in Palermo.
Other career highlights include appearances at the TCU Van Cliburn Institute in Fort Worth; the Chopin Society of Texas in Corpus Christi; the Woodlands Symphony Orchestra in Houston; the Fundacion Juan March in Madrid; the Juventudes Musicales of Seville; the Societad Filarmonica de Segovia, Spain; the Mosel Festwochen in Germany; the Liszt Institute in Bologna; the Associazione Ester Mazzoleni of Palermo; the Associazione Ernico Simbruina in Frosinone, Italy; the Festival Pianistico di Roma; the Festival International Echternach in Luxembourg; the St. Prex Festival in Switzerland and the Joseph Haydn Konservatorium in Eisenstadt, Austria. He has performed on Slovenian, Italian, and Swiss television broadcasts, and he has been a guest of Kawai Pianos in Germany and Italy.
A champion of new music, Di Liberto composes, commissions and premieres new works. His own compositions for piano solo, Fantasia sulla Cavalleria Rusticana di Pietro Mascagni and Pucciniana, Fantasie su arie di Puccini, have been published by the prestigious houses of Casa Musicale Sonzogno in Milan, and Edizioni Unda Maris in Palermo.
In Houston in 2005, Di Liberto premiered Pattern Preludes which were written for him by American composer Karim Al-Zand. Equally in demand as a chamber musician, Di Liberto has collaborated with many revered artists including cellists Christoph Henkel, Vadim Pavlov and Gautier Capuçon; violinist Cristiano Rossi; bass Simone Alaimo; tenor Fabio Armiliato and baritones Roberto Servile and Leo Nucci.
Di Liberto earned his Doctorate of Musical Arts in Piano Performance in 2006 at the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University under pianist Jon Kimura Parker. Born in Agrigento, Italy, in 1973, his gifts were recognized early on, and he graduated from the Bellini Music Conservatory in Palermo in the class of Giulio Arena. He continued his studies with Aquiles Delle Vigne and Bruno Canino.
He received his Master of Music degree from the Rotterdam Music Conservatory
in 1999. In 2002, he completed an Artist Diploma program at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, where he studied with Tamas Ungar and Harold Martina.
Throughout his studies and performance schedule, he has continued to instruct in music since 1998. He has held positions at the Civico Istituto “Luigi Costa” in Vigevano, Italy, and at the Accademia Internazionale di Musica Unda Maris in XXX city, Italy, where he assisted Bruno Canino and served as collaborative pianist for the violin class of Cristiano Rossi. He has conducted master classes for the Chopin Societies of Corpus Christi and Houston, and he served as a collaborative pianist and vocal coach at the Shepherd School of Music in Houston.