Saturday, November 16, 2013

Sergio Sorrentino 13 Questions

Sergio Sorrentino, guitarist and composer is considered by critics to be “one of the most important new Italian contemporary guitarists” (Radio Rai Tre). As a performer he promotes the classical and electric guitar contemporary repertory.  As a composer and improviser his music is based on sonic research and combines elements of contemporary classical music, minimalism, avant-garde, ambient, experimental. Academic Guitar Diploma with Honors at the Novara Conservatory, with a thesis on Italian avant-garde guitar music.

Sorrentino has recorded for Rai Trade, Vdm records, Silta Records, Carish, Curci, Sinfonica, Aton Records, Fratto9, Setola di Maiale, and has worked with composers and musicians like Azio Corghi, Alda Caiello, Joe Morris, Carlo Actis Dato, Machinefabriek, Fabio Cifariello Ciardi, Maurizio Pisati. He has debuted many new guitar solo compositions from composers Luca Lombardi, Giorgio Colombo Taccani, Riccardo Nova, Cesare Saldicco, Andrew McKenna Lee, Van Stiefel, David Coll, Mark Delpriora, special pieces just for him.

He has also written several chapters of the Guitar History Handbook by Bèrben Editions, a study on the twentieth century italian guitar composers (Mucchi editions), and several ethnomusicological writings. He currently writes a column for the italian guitar magazines Guitart, Dotguitar and Il Fronimo.
Sergio Sorrentino plays a Gioachino Giussani classical guitar and a Fender Artist Series Stratocaster.

Which was the first musical sound do you remember?

The sound of a musical box...

What do you expect from music?


Why do you love the guitar?

Because the guitar is full of different and amazing colours. I can feel her vibrations directly touching the strings. It's a really unique sensation!

Which work of your own are you most proud of?

The solo CD "Behind the Window" (label: Setola di Maiale), because it's a "summa" of my experimental guitar approach. Soon I will release a new CD based on experimental guitar, I will call it "Yellow Line".

Do you play electric and acoustic, do you approach the two differently?

No, they are both useful instruments to create my musical wishes.

Which is the main border, the main drawback of the guitar?

Maybe the difficulty of playing some harmonics. With the guitar is also difficult to find your personal sound, your own voice.


What do you change or add to your guitar?

In my improvisations I usually prepare the guitar with sticks, alligator clips, bluetack. I also use some pedals (above all a delay, a loop, a fuzz, and a white noise generator).

What’s the difference between a good guitar and a bad guitar?

The soul of its tone.

What are the challenges and benefits of today's digital music scene?

It helps to reach a wide range of followers. But I still prefer objects (CD, Vinyl).

Define the sound you're still looking for.

A sound that can describe the beauty of human deep feelings. Often I love to make the sound of my guitar similar to a Fender Rhodes.

Why and how do you use extended techniques in guitar?

Because I want to explore all the possibilites of the instrument. I like using objects, bowed guitar, microtones, Bartók pizzicato, tapping, slides. I love using a wide range of colors.

Which living artist would you like to collaborate with?

Eric Clapton

What dead artist would you like to have collaborated with?

Jimi Hendrix

What’s your latest project about?

A collaboration CD with the great electronic musician Machinefabriek. A project about the beauty of the electric guitar sound. Machinefabriek created (with editing and processing) some little musical sketches based on my electric guitar improvisations. The CD is a Fratto9 records release (with Dense promotion) and it is enjoying great success.

I'm also touring with my "Blackie" project. This project is based on new compositions for electric guitar solo made (on my invitation) by the most important contemporary composers (among others, Azio Corghi, Luca Lombardi, Van Stiefel). In 2014 I will play in Milan, Paris, Luxembourg, U.S.A. (Yale University). I will release also a CD with all the new compositions

Selected Discography:

Sergio Sorrentino/Machinefabriek: Vignettes Fratto9 Records, 2013 Dense promotion – Berlin
Federico Grassi/Sergio Sorrentino: Una Notte di Casanova - Concerto for narrator and guitar Guitart Collection, 2013
Sergio Sorrentino: A Day with the Guitar - works by Sorrentino, Sauguet, Brouwer Guitart Collection, 2012 Guitart Collection, 2012
Sergio Sorrentino: Tempus Fugit - Past and Future in the Contemporary Guitar Music - works for classical, baroque, beating and electric guitar by Maderna, Cifariello Ciardi, Corghi, McKenna Lee, Morrone, Munari, Pisati, Sorrentino Silta Classics, 2012
Trio Sorrentino/Telandro/Sigurtà: Immersus Emergo (Sergio Sorrentino, guitar / Simone Telandro, trumpet / Luca Sigurtà, electronics) Aton Records, Setola di Maiale, 2012
Sergio Sorrentino: Behind the Window - Electric Guitar Improvisations About the Rain Setola di Maiale, 2011
Sergio Sorrentino: Impro-Interferenza sull’Inno Nazionale for Electric Guitar and Tape Alchemistica, 2011
Sergio Sorrentino: Guitar Improvisation Project Alchemistica, 2011
AA.VV., Accordature, compositions of Carla Rebora, Rai Trade, Vdm Records, 2009, Sergio Sorrentino: guitar solo pieces on tracks 3 and 5
Cimino, Langone, Sorrentino, Suoni da una terra antica, Center of Ethnological Studies label, 2010, works by Cimino, Didier, Sorrentino, (Sergio Sorrentino also plays chitarra battente - beating guitar, a particular kind of ethnic italian guitar, similar to a baroque guitar)


'Manuale di Storia della Chitarra'' – La chitarra nel ventesimo secolo, ad uso dei Conservatori e delle Scuole di Musica, Edizioni Bèrben, 2009.
“Guitar History Handbook” Author: Gianni Nuti, with some chapters written by Sergio Sorrentino (among others chapters about Berio, Petrassi, Brouwer, Bogdanovic, de Falla, Llobet)
 AA.VV. Romolo Ferrari e la chitarra nella prima metà del Novecento, a cura di Simona Boni. Edizioni Mucchi, Modena, 2009. Includes: Sergio Sorrentino: I compositori non chitarristi in Italia


Sergio Sorrentino: De Nocturno Visu, electric guitar transcription of Nocturnus Visus by Azio Corghi, CASA RICORDI, Universal, 2013
Sergio Sorrentino: Dripping I, for guitar or any instrument or combination of instruments ArsPublica, 2013
Sergio Sorrentino: Haiku-Yuki, for piano, ArsPublica, 2013
Sergio Sorrentino: Tang'(Jok) Guitar, classical guitar transcription from the composition Tang'(Jok) Him by Azio Corghi CASA RICORDI, Universal, 2012
Sergio Sorrentino: Mosaico – Studio da Concerto per sei chitarre o multipli di sei (for six guitars or multiple of six) Sinfonica, 2012 Score + CD
Sergio Sorrentino: De Citharae Natura for guitar solo, Edizioni Sconfinarte, upcoming...

Music by other composers:

Giorgio Colombo Taccani, R’lyeh, for electric guitar solo, fingering by Sergio Sorrentino, Edizioni Suvini Zerboni, 2013;
Fabio Cifariello Ciardi: Buleria a Quattro, Edizioni Curci, fingering by Sergio Sorrentino, score + CD - classical guitar: Sergio Sorrentino, 2013;
AA.VV., Carlo Carfagna presents selected pieces by new composers, Carish Editions, 2011, also included Sergio Sorrentino's interpretation of the composition “Lamento”;
AA.VV., Leo Brouwer presents selected pieces by new composers, Carish Editions, 2009, also included Sergio Sorrentino's interpretation of the composition “Il VII incombe”;
Paola Calderone, Scherzo II for guitar solo, fingering by Sergio Sorrentino, Edizioni Rai Trade, 2009