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Paolo Schianchi

On the 20th July 2002 in Vigo, David Russell, currently regarded as one of the world’s most important classical guitarists, wrote:
«I heard Paolo Schianchi play in Italy and he showed both technicalsecurity and a high degree of artistry in his interpretation. He is a talen¬ted young player who has a bright musical future».

Paolo Schianchi is now considered by many to be one of the best Italian musicians of his generation. He plays all existing variations of the guitar. He is a musician, composer, researcher and inventor. He has more than one degree with honours and has received numerous national and international awards both as guitarist and composer, gaining experience with several of the world’s most renowned guitarists.
He graduated with honours from the University of Modena and Reggio Emilia with his first degree and also a ten-year Diploma in guitar, to which he then added a second post-diploma Master with honours at Level II in Music and Guitar and a third Master in Instrumental Teaching.
He has been a teacher on instrumental courses and experimental ones at various European schools and academies, such as the department of the Conservatorio Statale di Musica F. Venezze in Rovigo, and he has been invited to hold master classes at prestigious overseas universities and schools, like the Duke Ellington School Of The Arts in Washington D.C.
He has dedicated himself full-time in the fields of teaching and concert performance, teaching in public and private schools, and performing at prestigious festivals in Italy and abroad both as a soloist and with various Italian and foreign line-ups. He has also made recordings as a solo artist and in collaboration with renowned professional artists, such as the Parisian band Five O’Clock Jazz Group, the Arturo Toscanini Orchestra, Parma’s Regio Theatre Orchestra, Alberto Radius (legendary Italian guitarist and arranger for Lucio Battisti), Bernardo Lanzetti (PFM), Jim Dono¬van (Rusted Root, Carlos Santana, Led Zeppelin, Sting), Bill Burke, Michele Pertusi, Alessandro Haber, Maddalena Crippa, Umberto Fabi, Adriana Asti, etc.

He has been awarded first prize at several prestigious national and international competitions (Giovani Talenti, Rovere D'Oro, with 350 participants from all over the world, Ermo Colle) both as solo guitarist and composer.

In 2006 he published a research thesis entitled “Santino Garsi da Parma – Un Musicista da riscoprire” (Santino Garsi da Parma - A Musician to be rediscovered). With this work, virtuosic and counterpoint compositions by this Parmesan Renaissance composer (which those in the musicological sphere believed were lost) are brought to light, recovered and restored for the first time in modern history.

His solo concert, entitled Instrumental Metamorphosis, for which he worked on the music, script, direction, technical equipment, quadraphonic and hexaphonic spatialisation, has attracted the attention and critical acclaim of experts and enthusiasts the world over, and have brought thou¬sands of online visits on the celebrated YouTube site, together with a unanimously enthusiastic response from both critics and the public, and the recognition of Peter Stein, one of the world’s leading theatre directors.

From 2003 to 2007 working alongside a number of Italian engineers and luthiers, he designed, created and lastly patented Octopus®, a complex electro-acoustic system that is currently unique worldwide, which he has recently performed with at several important concert venues including the Auditorium Parco della Musica in Rome. This instrument enables him to play several guitars contemporaneously using both hands and feet, mixing their sounds (with over 200 controls) in real time exclusively live and without the help of pre-recorded sounds.

Paolo Schianchi was recently selected by a panel of television judges amidst thousands of con¬tenders for the RAI New Talents Project (Progetto RAI Nuovi Talenti) and was presented live on national television on the RaiUno channel by Pippo Baudo, performing on live TV as a soloist and live yet again on several occasions on the two major television networks (RaiUno and RaiDue).

«Paolo Schianchi is one of those rare musicians who forces me to reconsider what is possible in music. Calling Schianchi a virtuoso is like calling Pavarotti a good singer.He is the rare mix of tremendous talent and humble spirit. He makes me want to learn how to say "wow" in Italian. It's rare to meet some¬one who is setting the bar for other musicians. Paolo is one of these people» - Jim Donovan, multi-platinum recording artist from Rusted Root (collaborations: Carlos Santana, Led Zeppelin, ...), Friday 13rd February, 2009

«Paolo Schianchi is one of the finer guitarists to emerge from his generation. His virtuo¬sic technique, combined with his absolutely unique musical personality, will prove to distinguish him as an artist of considerable significance.» - Andrew Zohn, composer, pro¬fessor of guitar at the faculty of the Schwob School of Music (Columbus State Universi¬ty), Georgia, USA, Sunday 4th January, 2009

«For Paolo there’s just one word. It's got four syllables: SEN-SA-TION-AL! […] If Le Corbusier defined the city a machine to live in, then he is a machine for making music. He enjoys this form of art and he himself becomes an instrument. There’s nothing better than being part of a passion. Paolo Schianchi is music.» - Alessandro Rostagno, critic and journalist, RaiDue, live on national TV, Friday 2nd October, 2009

«He possesses amazing talents» -Bill Burke, Tuesday 19th May, 2009

«A remarkable talent [...]. Excellent technique and sound - and in my view the most important thing is always inventiveness, because you can study for a lifetime, but if you haven't got the head and the creativity for it, it will always be good, but never as good as this. Congratulations, my sincere congratulations!» - Alberto Radius, RaiUno, live natio¬nal TV, Monday 12th January, 2009

«Excellent. His interpretative rigour never sacrifices the intrinsic efficacy of commu¬nicative power that every musician should possess.» - Giovanni Puddu, Tuesday 20th May, 2008

«He is a great musician. Few have the gift of being able to communicate through music like him» -Matteo Mela, Monday 22nd September, 2003

«[...] The guitar! I love the guitar because, as you can see, it has feminine curves [...], in fact to play it, one draws it to oneself, embraces it, touches it, at times plucks it, cares¬ses it, but with a learned caress, I’d say intellectual, knowledgeable in the wisdom of the intellect and in this case music. I don’t know what Paolo Schianchi – the great guitar virtuoso [...] – is like as a caresser of women [...], but what’s certain is that as caresser of guitars Paolo Schianchi is absolutely extraordinary, I can assure you. Amazing! [...] I have the highest regard for him.» -Mario Lanfranchi, director, Sunday 15th October, 2006

«Paolo Schianchi, with whom I have had the pleasure to collaborate with research on Santino Garsi da Parma, the Renaissance lute player, is a highly talented and versatile musician, a virtuoso able to skilfully interpret numerous instrumentalist roles by following the metamorphoses that the guitar has undergone over time and within diverse cultu¬res.» -Massimo Lonardi, Monday 15th December, 2008

«I feel he is the greatest guitarist in the world! […] He's brilliant! […] It's out of this world! […] I love it!» - Alberto Radius interviewed by Red Ronnie for the Roxy Bar chan¬nel, Monday 1st June, 2009


«A revelation in contemporary music, a young man that has both the necessary qualities and passion needed to continue to revolutionise the history of 21st century music.» -Irene Accorsini,ParmaOk, Saturday 5th July, 2008

«[...] I have seen some pretty fair guitar players perform live - Clapton, Santana, Olson - but I don't think I've ever been this impressed. Paolo's virtuosity is breathtaking.» - Brent Ottaway, associate professor of Marketing at Saint Francis University, Trobadour, Loretto, Pennsylvania, vol.XVI - No.5 March, 2009

«[...] among the greatest guitarists, and also able to discover new sonorities with his research [...]» - Valeria Ottolenghi, Vice-President of the National Critics Association, Gazzetta di Parma, Thur¬sday 30th August, 2007

«A performance within a performance – these are Paolo Schianchi’s musical compositions. The first piece, as the curtain is raised, is alienating, the sounds produced by the two guitars, classical and electric, blend, but it is not a union between present day and past, nor between past and future, it is just indefinable and so incredibly fascinating and unsettling. Disorientating. The musician’s bare feet skip across the pedals, manipulating the sounds produced by the guitars or combining more sounds, echoes, resonance, thanks to Octopus®, an electro-acoustic system which he desig¬ned himself. […] I have never before heard anyone play the guitar like that. Extraordinary. […] Packed theatre, great audience, endless applause: an unmissable performance.» -Francesco Rapaccioni, & Culturama, Saturday 13th March, 2010

«Talent, versatility, extensive research [...] ingenious insights, [...] deriving from an artistic streak, the kind that one is born with and that can't be acquired, and this is what Paolo simply oozes. Good luck, Paolo, we'll be hearing a lot about you in the future.» - La Repubblica, online version, Music section, Celebrities category, Friday 16th January, 2009

«I’ve seen the future of rock [...] Paolo Schianchi isn’t an emerging musician: he is a great guitarist who still hasn’t had the opportunity to make a name for himself the way he deserves to. [...] Compo¬sitions for double-neck acoustic guitars will stop you mourning Jimmy Page at his best, followed bya demonstration of the potential of Octopus®, a complicated instrument that he patented himself which enables him to play with Pink Floyd’s magnificence, but by himself. Paolo Schianchi is a prodi¬gy of inventiveness, technique and passion entirely dedicated to music and not to becoming a cele¬brity […]. As Radius said to the audience "don’t wait for sensational foreigners; you have a great musician back home here".» - Pierangelo Pettenati, Music&Theatre -Gazzetta di Parma, Sunday 26th July, 2009

«"Tentacular" music, but much more than this, Paolo Schianchi [...] musician [...], young composer [...] also possesses an unusual passion and inventiveness.» - Polis Quotidiano newspaper, Sunday 18th January, 2009

«Today is the last day of the talent show hosted by Lucilla Agosti and Alessandro Rostagno. But who was the best out of the many promising youngsters who performed on stage? Alessandro Rostagno replies: “The guitarist Paolo Schianchi: he’s the only one who makes me shout out “sensa¬tional!” and I’m absolutely convinced he’ll go a long way”.» - TV, Sorrisi e Canzoni, RaiDue, Sunday 20th December, 2009

«The Italian Paolo Schianchi [...] demonstrates his passion for the guitar. For a number of years he has taken part in several internships in various music academies that [...] have enabled him to perform all over Italy. [...]». -La Stampa, Wednesday 5th June, 2002

«[...] a young, extraordinary musician, who has won numerous awards both as performer and composer [...]. A complex research project. [...] Great commitment. And a strong passion. [...]» - Valeria Ottolenghi, Vice-President of the National Critics Association, Gazzetta di Parma, Sunday 9th September, 2007
«[...] This young Parmesan guitarist [...] demonstrates an ability to combine great musicality with guitar technique (any kind of guitar) and incredible versatility.» - Giulio Bocchi, Gazzetta di Parma,Sunday 13th April, 2008

«Paolo Schianchi [...] has shown proof of his solid technical grounding and his extraordinary interpretative ability: a truly new world opens forth from his guitars» - Giulia Coruzzi, Gazzetta di Parma,Monday 28th July, 2008

«[...] I feel it is my duty, a desire that I believe is not merely a personal one: that in our city, the home of music, those who really know how to make music are recognised and given a voice that others can hear, even though they are young [...]» - anonymous letter, Gazzetta di Parma, Tuesday 20th May, 2003

«Thanks to [...] diverse musical interests, his studies have enabled him to gain remarkable technical skills as well as a great versatility with his instrument, gifts that are brought to the fore in his con¬certs [...]» -Francesco Maggi, Gazzetta di Parma, Monday 11th August, 2003

«Schianchi is a concert performer who combines a solid and thorough musical and virtuosic education with study and research into all the variants of the guitar, and meets with widespread appro¬val in both fields.» -Gazzetta di Parma, Wednesday 9th April, 2008

«[...] young yet extraordinary [...]» - Valeria Ottolenghi, Vice-President of the National Critics Asso¬ciation, Gazzetta di Parma, Sunday 15th October, 2006