Hot Picks: Massimo Cusato
Massimo Cusato is an Italian percussionist and drummer. In his teenage years he undertook his training as self-taught musician. In 1991 he moved to Rome to delve into the study of drums as well as percussion instruments with distinguished musicians like Arnaldo Vacca, Giovanni Imparato, Ettore Mancini, Horazio “el Negro” Hernandez. In May 1994 he joined the Eugenio Bennato Band and had the chance to experiment with the use of the bass drum in support of the tamburello as well as the frame drums. The experiment was fully successful, to the point that he became a pioneer in the use of the tambourine-drum kit combo. In 1998 he traveled to Havana (Cuba) to explore and expand his knowledge of the Afro-Cuban music with Louis “Changuito” Quintana. In the same year he co-funded a Calabrian ethnic music group called Quartaumentata, which gave him the opportunity to experiment and broaden his percussionist range, so to achieve new acoustic solutions: the Tamburello - DrumSet Combo and the Multi DrumSet Combo. The former comes from the combination of tamburello, bass drum and hi-hat, while the latter describes the use of the drums and other percussion instruments, merged into a single tool. For the past 10 years Massimo has been traveling from Calabria, to Rome, to New York City, where he had the opportunity to continue his musical training with eminent “Maestros” like Glen Velez, Tommy Campbell, Mike Clark, John Amina, Vince Cherico. Since 1994 he has been an advocate of revolutionary and groundbreaking ideas in the percussion instruments discipline, quickly becoming a reference point for all the musicians in the field. During these years created the first volume on the didactics of tamburello, entitled “The ABCs of the Traditional Calabrian Tamburello” In 2015, Massimo signed an endorsement contract with the prestigious drum company Remo Inc. Together with them he designed and launched the “Tamburello Calabria" and a hybrid instrument the “Pandurello" into the world market. His artistic sensibility expressed itself throughout a number of very diverse musical landscapes, paving the way for numerous collaborations both in the musical and theatrcal field, both live and in studios, with nationally and internationally renowned artists, including -but not limited to: QuartAumentata, Massimo Ranieri, Niccolò Fabi, Paola Turci, Simone Cristicchi, Eugenio Bennato, Pilar, Tony Bungaro, Lucilla Galeazzi. Currently, along with the extensive concert-related activity, he devotes most of his time to teaching, holding several masterclasses and percussion laboratory classes at prestigious Institutions like the New York University, Drummers Collective of NYC, the California Institute of the Arts, Bennington College, Hofstra University, University of Education of Heidelberg, and the Conservatory of Trieste, Campobasso and Reggio Calabria.
Massimo Cusato will be presenting Tamurello Calabria & Pandurello workshops this November at 52 Studio Arts. For more information please contact Kim at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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