versione italiana  image open player >>


Marvi La Spina

JAZZ IT - OBOE SOMMERSO - "inspired composer, with original creativity completely without compromise, orchestra conductor focused on the issues of producing a distinctive sound as a whole, Marvi La Spina reaches a high personal goal ... music and well orchestrated arrangements blend with the interpretation of texts ... a fresh, modern, intriguing music. Between blues and swing, experimental, funk and significant orchestral solutions."
Gianmichele Taormina

JAZZITALIA - LIGHEA - "... splendid concerting of the trio ... in a play of seduction, nostalgia and a lot of magic ... Magic that enchants the minds of the listeners of this beautiful cd ... Marvi La Spina on the piano who, with sharpness and precision, shows her skills as a fine pianist."
Dino Plasmati

IL FOGLIO - LIGHEA - "This trio of Sicilian-American music is fantastic."

IL NOSTRO GIORNALE - OBOE SOMMERSO - "... multifaceted artist with class and depth ... It is a project with a strong emotional outlet ... a refined harmonic complexity ... in Oboe Sommerso the heart of Jazz beats alive and vital ..."
Gino Fortunato

photos by Alice Traballi

Born in Palermo, attended the "Bellini" Music Conservatory gaining a First in a Diploma for Classical Piano with Aurelia Spagnolo (1985).

She won a Berklee Correspondence Course from "Berklee College of Music" in Boston (USA) and was subsequently awarded a first in a Diploma for Jazz Music at the Conservatory "L. Refice" in Frosinone, with G. Iacoucci, (1996).

She perfected her piano training with Enrico Pieranunzi, and studied conducting and composition with Gunther Schuller and William Russo.

She won the first prize for composition and arrangement in two International competitions for Jazz Orchestra "Barga Jazz 2000" (Lucca) and Scrivere in Jazz 2000 (Sassari). In 2001 she gained a First Diploma on the "European Course of Jazz Orchestra Conducting" in Palermo.

Creator of "Macchina di Suoni Jazz Orchestra" in its atypical formation open to the collaboration with artists from various musical backgrounds. She recorded "Oboe Sommerso" with the record label "Soul Note – Dischi della Quercia" a voyage through Sicilian poetry, original music compositions set to the works of Sicilian poets.
Since 2001 she has been collaborating with Mario Raja and Bruno Tommaso with whom she has established the Trio Lighea, and recorded with Splasc(h) Records a CD of original compositions inspired by traditional Sicilian music. She has taken part in Siena Jazz, The Sassari Jazz Festival and The Stresa Festival 2003 with an original production on classical composers from Latin America. In 2005 the trio performed at the "Avrupa Jazz Festival" in Izmir (Turkey), holding a workshop on the "Unconventional Orkestra."

In 2005 she also won a scholarship for the "Omi Music International Musicians Residency" at the OMI Center in New York.

She has performed with many groups and soloists, amongst whom Marcello Pellitteri, Pietro Ciancaglini, David Kikoski, Stefano D'Anna, Paul Jeffrey, Gunther Schuller, Piero Leveratto, Marco Valeri, Carla Marcotulli, Gianpaolo Casati, Lorenzo Tucci, Mario Raja Big Bang, The Sicilian Jazz Orchestra, The Duke Ellington Singers, Enzo Randisi, Gianni Cavallaro and Mimmo Cafiero.

She has worked with composers and arrangers from the Kandinskij Chamber Orchestra (with a homage to Jimi Hendrix), with the Orchestra of Contemporary Music, with the Saxophone Quartet Arundo Donax, and with the Bruno Tommaso Ensemble at the seminars of Siena Jazz. With her own group Kemonia she has played for "Amici della Musica di Palermo" and at the Jazz festival in Viggiano. In 2004 she became a part of Bruno Tommaso's quintet, and in 2007 established the Marvi La Spina Open Space 5et with which she participated in the "Maggio Off" in the "Maggio Musicale Fiorentino" Festival.

She taught arrangement and music ensemble at the summer seminars of the Viggiano Jazz Festival. She also taught analysis of composition and form at the Department of Jazz in the "Bellini" Conservatory of Music in Palermo, and harmony and arrangement at the music school Palermo Jazz.
Currently she holds a teaching position in Jazz piano at the "Bellini" Conservatory of Music, Palermo.

With "Macchina di Suoni Jazz Orchestra" she has performed for the principal Sicilian Concert Associations, and since 2009 she has organised a series of summer and winter concerts, in collaboration with " I Candelai" a cultural association based in Palermo. Of particular importance was her collaboration with the American pianist and composer David Kikoski, star guest of "Macchina di Suoni" during the summers of 2011 and 2012.

Recently she has formed a new quintet "Visions", in which she performs her own repertoire of compositions.

english bio translation by Theresa Boundy


CADENCE nov. 2004 - OBOE SOMMERSO - "La Spina is an arranger who brings to mind many of the best in her invention and use of the color of her orchestra ... U' Misteru is a wonderful big band arrangement ... Sicilian and Italian poetry surrounded by rich big band accompaniment ... ... what a fine arranger La Spina is and what a fine band her Macchina di Suoni Jazz Orch is. For the brave, this is worth the trip to Palermo."

ALIAS/Il Manifesto - LIGHEA - "This CD's beautiful music is inspired by Sicily ... most of the compositional weight is on the shoulders of pianist Marvi La Spina, Sicilian artist, pianist with a sensitive and dynamic touch, generating colorful melodies, full of light and feeling, trenched by emotions  and passions ... is a shared project, played on the expressive power of the music itself, which is essential but never rough, without falling into sumptuous baroque, direct and strong as refined."
Luigi Onori

ALL ABOUT JAZZ- OBOE SOMMERSO - "... the orchestra plays very well, the songs (are) interesting experiments of fusion between jazz, folk and avant-garde ... particularly suggestive (are) songs in Sicilian dialect ... the whole disc is well done, brave and deserves attention."
Neri Pollastri

LA REPUBBLICA - LIGHEA - "the refined cd ... one of the best albums of the year."
Gigi Razete


photos by Leandro Lo Bianco