"You can detect a bit of Nino Rota–ish Italian folk in Avventure di Pinocchio, which was written for Circus Smirkus's telling of the Carlo Collodi story, with a lovely clarinet theme for Geppetto."-Jon Garelick: Boston Phoenix
“Musical Acrobats” – Jon Garelick: Boston Phoenix
“Perhaps the most unusual musical group in Boston.” -Brett Milano: B.U. Today
"Fabulous...timeless and original, a combo you don’t see every day" – Nancy Sheehan: Worcester Telegram
This 16 song CD is a diverse assemblage of instrumentals composed by circus musician Peter Bufano. He wrote this music in June 2005 for Circus Smirkus. The show, under the direction of founder Rob Mermin, was based on the story of Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi. This is the score for a one ring circus in which all of the performers are children.
Bufano has played keyboards for Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, Big Apple Circus, and Bindlestiff Circus too so he's no stranger to the circus world. In fact, he's been in and out of the Circuses in the united states and abroad since 1987. Bufano has managed to remain somewhat obscure while churning out a diverse body of work although his quirky circus tunes have recently found a home on a number of Television shows. NPR's day to day recently spoke to Bufano about his work in the circus.
This recording by Scott C. Martin took place on August 4, 2005. The musicians; Bufano on accordion and piano; Sammy Lett on saxes, flute, and clarinet; Mike Dobson on drums and percusion; and Arvin Zarookian on Bass were in the middle of a three month tour with Circus Smirkus.
The tunes range through circus oom-pa, tangos, swing, fox-trot, gypsie, Tarantella, and much more. Bufano's compositions are melodic, memorable, and get hold of you. At times he creates another world. Perhaps this is why his work is in constant demand from the circus world.
"Pinocchio" is Cirkestra's third CD and in many ways is their most successful. One hears the musical thumb-print Bufano has left on the circus and in this recording it's clearer than ever. There are more songs here than in the other CDs and they dig deeper emotionally.
The beautiful illustrations by Bufano resemble that in a childrens book but the music is rich enough to keep even a sophisticated listener captivated.