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Named by the New York Philharmonic  “the inheritor of Piazzolla’s mantle”, Octavio Brunetti (May 12, 1975 – August 29, 2014) was a pianist, arranger and composer from Argentina. He was best known as one of the most sought after tango pianists of our time, and for his participation in the album Te amo tango (Soundbrush Records SR 1009) by Raul Jaurena, which won the Latin Grammy Award for Best Tango Album in 2007. Octavio Brunetti was born on May 12, 1975 in Rosario, Argentina.  From early childhood, Brunetti was trained in classical piano, and before he even finished his studies at the National School of Music in Rosario, he was already playing in concerts discovering his passion for the music from his country, the tango. In no time, he played with many important musicians such as famous singer Alberto Castillo, Eladia Blazquez, Ruben Juarez, Domingo Federico, Rodolfo Mederos and Osvaldo Piro, and shared the stage with Horacio Salgan-De Lio and Atilio Stampone. His talent earned him many awards and took him to perform at the famous Teatro Colon, still at a very young age. In 1991 he founded the Tango Rosario Symphonic Orchestra and became a member of the Omar Torres Quintet with whom he made his first tango recording, Inquietudes. In 1997 he left the Quintet and joined the Domingo Federico Tango Orchestra, with whom he traveled through Argentina and Europe and recorded a second CD, Orquesta Juvenil de Tango de la U.N.R. Shortly after that, Brunetti created his first own quintet, playing original arrangements of traditional and modern tangos as well as original compositions. Throughout this time, he continued to perform classical repertoire in a piano duo with his sister Laura. In 2002, he was named conductor of the Orchestra of Popular Music of the Province of Córdoba.

In 2004 Brunetti moved to the U.S. to attend Berklee College of Music.  During this time there he received two first prizes at the New York City International Tango Competition: Best Solo Pianist and Best Duo (with saxophonist Bernardo Monk). In 2005 he moved to New York and met bandoneon player Raúl Jaurena, with whom he recorded the CD Te amo tango, which won the Latin Grammy Award for best tango album in 2007. He has also played with bandoneón masters Daniel Binelli, Hector Del Curto and Tito Castro. In 2005 he founded his own tango quintet, the Octavio Brunetti Quintet, in 2008 the Urban Tango Trio, and in 2012 the trio Los Varones del Tango.

Brunetti has performed with luminaries of the concert world, including world-renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma, and Cuban jazz saxophonist Paquito D’Rivera. In addition he has participated in numerous music festivals throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, South America, and performed in venues such as Symphony Space, Blue Note, Rose Theatre (Jazz at Lincoln Center), Bellayre Music Festival, Ojai Music Festival, La Jolla Music Fest, New York Chamber Music Festival, Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), Tokyo Bunka Kaikan (Japan), Al Bustan Festival (Lebanon), Teatro San Martin (Buenos Aires), and Teatro Colon (Salón Dorado).

In September 2013 Octavio Brunetti’s arrangement of Astor Piazzolla’s suite La serie del Ángel, commissioned by the New York Philharmonic, was premiered in a performance at the Philharmonic’s Opening Gala, conducted by Music Director Alan Gilbert and performed by cellist Yo-Yo Ma. The program brochure of this New York Philharmonic performance presented Octavio Brunetti as "the inheritor of Piazzolla's mantle".

With Yo-Yo Ma Octavio Brunetti has recorded Soledad by Astor Piazzolla (Appassionato, Sony BMG Classical, 2007) 

Other well known recordings include the Latin Grammy award-winning Te amo tango with Raúl Jaurena (bandoneón), Piazzolla: desde estudios a tangos with Elmira Darvarova (violin), and the original soundtrack recordings for Francis Ford Coppola’s films Tetro (Deutsche Grammophon) and Twixt, both with scores by Argentine composer Osvaldo Golijov. 

In July 2014 Brunetti performed with the Octavio Brunetti Tango Orchestra at the Midsummer Night Swing Festival in the Lincoln Center in New York.

On August 3, 2014 Octavio Brunetti was hospitalized at Mount Sinai Hospital for an unexpected infectious illness. However, the doctors could not find the location of the infection and the cure, and Brunetti died.

Discography:

  • Inquietudes with the Omar Torres Quintet and Octet (Europhone, 1996)
  • Orquesta Juvenil de Tango de la U.N.R. with Domingo Federico (EMR, 1997)
  • Tierra y Asfalto (duo with guitarist Román Carballo, 2003)
  • Te amo tango with bandoneonist Raúl Jaurena (Soundbrush Records, 2006) - Latin Grammy award for Best Tango Album, 2007
  • Soledad by Astor Piazzolla with cellist Yo-Yo Ma (Sony Classical, 2007) 
  • Tetro by Osvaldo Golijov (soundtrack of the film by Francis Ford Coppola, Deutsche Grammophon, 2009)
  • Tango Conversations with guitarist Adam Tully (2009)
  • Oscar e Familia with saxophonist Oscar Feldman et al. (Sunnyside Records, 2010)
  • El Violin Latino with violinist Gregor Huebner (Peregrina Music, 2010, EAN 4012116506020)
  • Tango & Obsession with violinist Nick Danielson (CD Baby, 2010, ASIN B004FNBY80)
  • Urban Tango Trio with violinist Machiko Ozawa and bassist Pedro Giraudo ( Cantaloupe Music, 2010) 
  • Twixt by Osvaldo Golijov (soundtrack of the film by Francis Ford Coppola, 2011)
  • Adiós Nonino and other great Tangos by Piazzolla with violinist Elmira Darvarova (Delphinum Records, 2011)
  • Marioneta with singer Noelia Moncada (MTT, 2011)
  • Tango Distinto by Astor Piazzolla with trombonist Achilles Liarmkopoulos (Naxos Records, 2011) 
  • Masters of Bandoneon with Leonardo Suarez Paz’s Cuartetango String Quartet (Azica, 2012)
  • Hard Tango with J. P. Jofre Quintet featuring Pablo Aslan, Nick Danielson, Lev “Ljova” Zhurbin, Paquito D' Rivera & Fernando Otero (Round Star Entertainment, 2012, ASIN B00B5OUY8I)
  • Piazzolla: desde estudios a tangos with violinist Elmira Darvarova (Urlicht AudioVisual, 2014, UAV-5991)

Awards :

  • 2004: Best Solo Pianist of the New York City International Tango Competition
  • 2004: Best Duo of the New York City International Tango Competition (with saxophonist Bernardo Monk)
  • 2007: Latin Grammy award: Best Tango Album (Te amo tango)

 


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