Italian – American Conductor, Raffaele
Livio Ponti is an artist of dynamic personality, charismatic performances, and
superb musicianship. His trademark is the breadth of his vision, the clarity of
his interpretation, and the rich beauty of his sound. The Chicago Courier News
Writes, “Maestro Ponti brings an exhilarating energy level to center stage.
It’s an electrifying swagger empowering and enabling him to pull music from
light to darkness and back again. He is a rising star!”
Award winning Conductor Raffaele Ponti is
the recipient of the 2014 Charlie Award for Outstanding Artistic Achievement,
winner of the Mario Gusella International Conducting Competition in
Pescara, Italy, the Cleveland Institute of Music's Bernard Adelstein Award, the Sons of Italy
Italian Musician of the Year, Harborstyle Magazine’s Best Performing Arts Group
with the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, Florida Weekly’s Best Award with the
Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, and honored with a Proclamation, given by the
Mayor and City Council Members of Punta Gorda, Florida.
Raffaele is currently Artistic Director
and Conductor of the Paducah Symphony Orchestra and Music Director and Conductor
of Florida’s Charlotte Symphony Orchestra.
appointment as Artistic Director of the Paducah Symphony the Annual fund
contributions have doubled, season subscriptions have nearly tripled, single ticket
purchases have increased by 72%, the operation budget has nearly doubled, and
he helped secure a $1Million dollar pledge to the endowment. He also developed education programs that
educate and inspire students, in which the number of participants has grown
from 2,000 to 20,000 students per year.
His accomplishments as Music Director and
Conductor of the Charlotte Symphony Orchestra of Florida include three sold-out
seasons, the first in the orchestra’s history. This success has increased the
number of performances, doubled audience size and the orchestra’s budget in
three seasons. He has also increased the orchestra roster from 40 to 70
professional musicians that come from all over the state of Florida.
Recently Raffaele led the Buffalo
Philharmonic and Erie Philharmonic with immediate return engagements. He is
also the former Principal Conductor and Music Director and now Regular Guest
Conductor of Italia Konzert Opera International in San Gimignano, Italy,
Founding Director of Festival di Musica da Camera in Ripatransone, Italy, and
continues to appear with other prominent orchestras around the United States
and Europe including the Buffalo Philharmonic, Rochester Philharmonic, Sofia
Symphony, Varna State Opera, Orchestra di Pescara, Austin Symphony, Siena
Symphony, Binghamton Philharmonic, Elgin Symphony, Billings Symphony, Italia
Konzert Opera, Utica Symphony, Schenectady Symphony, Orchestra of the Southern
Finger Lakes, Syracuse Symphony and repeated tours of Italy with the Sofia
Symphony Orchestra, and Varna State Opera Orchestra, of Bulgaria.
Raffaele began his training on violin,
piano and trumpet. At the age of 17, he began playing with the Rochester
Philharmonic and at 19, with the Cleveland Orchestra. After graduating from the
Cleveland Institute of Music, Ponti went to Italy to study conducting in Siena,
and later, in Rome with Giuseppe Sinopoli. Beginning as an opera conductor he
had instant success conducting operas throughout Italy with productions of
Aida, Il trovatore, La traviata, Carmen, La boheme, Tosca, Madama Butterfly,
Pagliacci and L’elisir d’amore.