Ukulele


“…Albini wants to conquer a permanent place in the contemporary classical music landscape with his ukulele. […] Giovanni Albini manages to shed light on the different aspects of the ukulele and get rid of the incorrect nickname ‘pocket instrument’.” H. Gaudeus, Classiek-Centraal.be

At the Conservatorio “A. Vivaldi” of Alessandria, Professor Albini has established a groundbreaking Bachelor’s degree program focused on the ukulele. This pioneering initiative marks the world’s first-ever course dedicated to the instrument, offering a comprehensive curriculum specialized in ukulele performance. Prof. Albini is at the forefront of commissioning and performing contemporary classical music pieces tailored for the ukulele. His expertise extends to arranging classical compositions, as well as acclaimed contemporary and 20th-century scores, effectively cultivating an innovative and sophisticated repertoire for the ukulele. His efforts are directed towards enriching the instrument’s unique idiomatic characteristics, driving its evolution. In March 2023, he presented his cutting-edge research on contemporary ukulele music during seminars for composition classes at prestigious institutions like The Juilliard School of Music in New York and the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia. As the co-director and co-founder of the Ukulele International Conference (UIC) – an interdisciplinary platform encompassing Performance, Composition, and Organology – Prof. Albini contributes significantly to the global ukulele community of researchers. The inaugural edition (UIC 2021) took place at the University of Milan in December 2021, receiving resounding acclaim. Building on this success, the second edition (UIC 2023) is being organized and hosted by the Conservatory of Music “Antonio Vivaldi” in Alessandria, Italy. Prof. Albini is a respected faculty member in the esteemed summer courses organized by the Fondazione Campus Internazionale di Musica, held in the picturesque castle of Sermoneta.
His album A Contemporary Ukulele, showcasing fourteen new compositions for ukulele, was published in 2022 by Da Vinci Classics (here is a link to one of the several great reviews). Notably, he has also recorded a ukulele solo score for Frederick Rawski’s brand new album, Misremembrances. Additionally, Albini takes immense pride in his role as an official endorser of Aquila Corde Armoniche. His endorsement involves thorough testing and evaluation of their nine distinct ukulele string sets, culminating in official YouTube videos where he intricately showcases and compares their remarkable features. Prof. Albini’s influence resonates internationally through teaching and performances at renowned festivals like Festival Pontino 2023, Monopolele 2022 – Mediterranean Ukulele Fest (Monopoli, IT – 2022), Czech Ukulele Festival (Únětice, CZ – 2022), and Gaithersburg UkeFest (2021). Among his esteemed ukulele students is the exceptional Isabella Sophie Paruzzo, a name celebrated within the global arts scene.
Albini has also incorporated the ukulele into his ongoing compositional endeavors. Among his more recent accomplishments is the commission by Fine5 Dance Theatre for a dance performance’s musical score, premiered at the Russian Theatre in Tallinn. Here, alongside electronic music segments, he skillfully interwove live ukulele performances. A portion of this musical creation can now be found on an album titled Uppuv Aeg, available across major digital platforms, including Spotify and Apple Music. Recognizing the ukulele’s potential even in educational settings, Albini also crafted a suite for a choir of treble voices and ukuleles, titled Escursioni cittadine, piccola suite metroselvatica, set to original nursery rhymes by Mario Sala Gallini. “Metro, in the sense of a metropolis, and ‘selvatiche,’ referring to the wild, encompassing nature,” Albini elucidates, “as our chosen theme revolves around nature’s presence within our urban landscapes, drawing inspiration from Calvino’s Marcovaldo.” This initiative took the stage in the autumn of 2022, involving preschool children, and is slated for a reprisal in Pavia come 2024.
In his concerts, he takes the stage with meticulously chosen historical and modern instruments from a collection of over seventy ukuleles. A special emphasis is placed on instruments and luthiers of Italian origin, including notable names/brands such as Francesco Verginelli (FVguitars), Lorenzo Lippi, Nicòla Turturro, Marco Todeschini (Antica Ukuleleria), and Mogar (Monzino Garlandini).

Published transcriptions by Giovanni Albini


CLASSICAL UKULELE ANTHOLOGYVOL. 1: from Beginner to Intermediate (32pp.)
This anthology for ukulele with re-entrant tuning (high G) offers a collection of faithful transcriptions of works from the classical repertoire, presented in order of difficulty. The transcriptions collected in this anthology primarily call for fingerstyle technique and are included in both tablature form and traditional notation. Each piece is designed as both a concert miniature and an exercise. Published by Ricordi, exclusively distributed by Hal Leonard. ISMN: 9790041426723; NR 14267200. Music Shop Europe.

  1. Wiegenlied op. 49/4 [Johannes Brahms]
  2. La Toupie [Mel Bonis]
  3. Wilder Reiter [Robert Schumann]
  4. Mireille au piano [Mel Bonis]
  5. Le Petit Mendiant [Mel Bonis]
  6. Wiegenlied [Carl Maria von Weber]
  7. Gib dich zufrieden und sei stille [Johann Sebastian Bach]
  8. Tema [Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart]
  9. 4 Canones [Johann Sebastian Bach]
  10. March [Dmítrij Sostakóvic]
  11. Miaou! Ronron! [Mel Bonis]
  12. Scherzo [Aram Il’ic Chacaturjan]
  13. Tortues [Camille Saint-Saëns]
  14. Tema [Nicolò Paganini]
  15. Le Baptême [Mel Bonis]
  16. Morgenstemning [Edvard Grieg]
  17. Sarabande [Georg Friedrich Händel]
  18. Là ci darem la mano [Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart]
  19. The Little Horseman [Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky]
  20. Wiegenlied (minor version) [Johannes Brahms]

CLASSICAL UKULELE ANTHOLOGYVOL. 2: from Intermediate to Advanced (44pp.)
This anthology for ukulele brings together a collection of faithful transcriptions of works from the classical repertoire, presented in order of difficulty, alternating between re-entrant (high G) and linear (low G) tuning. The transcriptions collected in this anthology primarily call for fingerstyle technique and are included in both tablature form and traditional notation. Each piece is designed as both a concert miniature and an exercise. Published by Ricordi, exclusively distributed by Hal Leonard. ISMN: 9790041426730; NR 14267300. Music Shop Europe.

  1. Melodie [Robert Schumann] high G
  2. Lied ohne Name [Igor Stravinsky] low G
  3. Minuetto [Luigi Boccherini] high G
  4. Ave verum corpus [Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart] low G
  5. Pur ti miro, pur ti godo [Claudio Monteverdi] high G
  6. El noi de la mare (tradizionale) low G
  7. An der schönen blauen Donau [Johann Strauss] high G
  8. Praeludium III [Clara Schumann] low G
  9. Moments musicaux Op. 94/3 (D 780) [Franz Schubert] high G
  10. March [Henry Purcell] low G
  11. Le cygne [Camille Saint-Saëns] high G
  12. Adagio [Clara Schumann] low G
  13. La fille aux cheveux de lin [Claude Debussy] high G
  14. Branle Gay [Adrian le Roy] low G
  15. Prélude [Maurice Ravel] high G
  16. Primo tema | First theme from 2nd movement of Symphony N. 7 [Ludwig van Beethoven] low G
  17. Allegro [Muzio Clementi] high G
  18. Mishima/Closing [Philip Glass] low G (scordatura)
  19. Für Elise [Ludwig van Beethoven] high G
  20. Truman Sleeps [Philip Glass] low G (scordatura)

CLASSICAL UKULELE ANTHOLOGYVOL. 3: from Advanced to Expert (84pp.)
This anthology for ukulele brings together a collection of faithful transcriptions of works from the classical repertoire, presented in order of difficulty, alternating between re-entrant (high G) and linear (low G) tuning. The transcriptions contained in this anthology primarily call for fingerstyle technique extensively and are included in both tablature form and traditional notation. Each piece is designed as both as a concert miniature and an exercise. Published by Ricordi, exclusively distributed by Hal Leonard. ISMN: 9790041426747; NR 14267400. Music Shop Europe.

  1. Trost [Franz Schubert] high G
  2. Adagio BWV 974 [Johann Sebastian Bach] low G
  3. Canon a 2 [Johann Sebastian Bach] high G
  4. Jesu Rex admirabilis [Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina] low G
  5. Capriccio op. 1/2 [Nicolò Paganini] high G
  6. El grillo [Josquin Des Prez] low G
  7. Allegro from La primavera [Antonio Vivaldi] high G
  8. Hymn of the Cherubim [Aleksandr Sheremetev] low G
  9. Lied op. 6/2 [Fanny Mendelssohn] high G
  10. Stabat mater dolorosa [Giovanni Battista Pergolesi] low G
  11. Prélude from Suite BWV 1012 [Johann Sebastian Bach] high G
  12. Erlkönig [Franz Schubert] low G
  13. Clair de lune [Claude Debussy] high G
  14. Adagio [Samuel Barber] low G
  15. Ein Kleine Nachtmusik K 525 [Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart] high G
  16. Allegretto [Karl Jenkins] low G
  17. Russian from The Nutcracker op. 71 [Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky] high G
  18. Inventio 4 BWV 775 [Johann Sebastian Bach] low G
  19. Promenade [Modest Mussorgsky] high G
  20. Hymn of the Cherubim op. 41/6 [Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky] low G

New works written for (or premiered by) Albini


► Alberto Barberis, Preludio Variato (2020) for ukulele solo (gCEA) and web app. Duration: 5′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini. ALBUM

► Andrea Beggio, Prototype Pattern (2020) for amplified detuned ukulele solo (gCE♭G) and live electronics. Duration: 3′. Written for (and revision and fingering by) Giovanni Albini.

► Andrea Beggio, Obscure Particles (2021) for amplified detuned ukulele solo (gCE♭G) and tape (via Ableton Live). Duration: 4′. Written for (and revision by) Giovanni Albini. ALBUM

► Antonio Giacometti, Encontro das Águas (2022) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 5′. Dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

► Brandon J. Rolle, Afterward (2021) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini, published by Black Tea Music. SCORE / ALBUM

► Cosimo Carovani, [Leidenpassus] Op. 49 No. 4 (2020) for ukulele solo (GCEA), from Miniature Caratteristiche per vari strumenti solo. Duration: 5′. Written for (and dedicated to) Giovanni Albini.

► Choan Gálvez, The Cheerless Walk (2020) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 5′. Dedicated to and premiered by Giovanni Albini, published by The Ukulele Bookshop. ISMN: 979-0-805446-01-1 SCORE / VIDEO / ALBUM

► Choan Gálvez, A. P. Drove me to Tears (2020) for ukulele solo (Low G) with scordatura (GBDA). Duration: 3′. Premiered by Giovanni Albini, published by The Ukulele Bookshop. ISMN: 979-0-805446-03-5 SCORE / VIDEO

► Choan Gálvez, Bigger Steps (2021) for baritone ukulele solo (DGBE). Duration: 6-10′. Premiered by Giovanni Albini, published by The Ukulele Bookshop. ISMN: 979-0-805446-16-5 SCORE / VIDEO

► Choan Gálvez, Hopeless at Messenger (2021) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 1′. Premiered by Giovanni Albini, published by The Ukulele Bookshop. ISMN: 979-0-805446-31-8 SCORE / VIDEO

► Choan Gálvez, On Vacation (2022) for ukulele solo (gCEA). I – Introduction, II – At the Pool, III- At the Terrace, IV – Turnaround. Total duration: 12′. Dedicated to and premiered by Giovanni Albini, published by The Ukulele Bookshop. ISMN: 979-0-805446-36-3 SCORE

David John Roche, I love Ukulele, Three Pieces for Solo Ukulele (2020) for ukulele solo (gCEA). I – Future Champion, II – Love and Admiration, III – Greatest of all Time. Total duration: 10′. Written for, commissioned and premiered by Giovanni Albini. II – VIDEO III – VIDEO

Davide Tammaro, The Messenger (2021) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini. ALBUM

► Emmanuel Amiot, Ta Tendre Chair de Femme (2021) for ukulele with scordatura and voice ad libitum (FCEA). Duration: 3′. Dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

Enrico Dorigatti, Ascension (2023) for electric ukulele (GCEA) and electronics. Duration: 3′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

Fabrizio Nastari, Dies Rainbow (2020) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini. VIDEO / ALBUM

Fabrizio Nastari, Pappagalli Verdi (2021) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3’30. Written for, dedicated to to, revision and fingering, and premiered by Giovanni Albini.

Federico Favali, Leuk (2021) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for and premiered by Giovanni Albini, published by Donemus. SCORE

► Francesco Tanzi, Mà-tera (2021) for ukulele (gCEA) and cello quartet. Duration: 6′. Dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

Frederick Rawski, Milan Dismembered (2021) for ukulele (gCEA) and delay. Duration: 3’30. Written for Giovanni Albini at highSCORE Festival 2021. ALBUM

Giorgio Colombo Taccani, Canzone dell’Assenza (2021) for ukulele (gCEA). Duratio: 3’30. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini. Published by Edizioni Suvini Zerboni.

Joe Schittino, Le Capybara Rêveur, JS 322 (2020) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Dedicated to (and revision and fingering by) Giovanni Albini.

► Lindsay Higgs, Homage to Brouwer (2013) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 40”. Premiered by Giovanni Albini. VIDEO

Lodi Luka, Country Roads (2021) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 4′. Dedicated to (and revision and fingering by) Giovanni Albini.

► Matteo Generani, Cartolina Musicale (2020) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for, dedicated to, revision and fingering, and premiered by Giovanni Albini. VIDEO

► Matteo Tundo, Acheta (2022) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3′. Dedicated to, revision and fingering by Giovanni Albini.

► Matteo Tundo, Chiarore appena (2022) for solo amplified ukulele (gCEA) with reverb. Duration: 4-8′. Dedicated to, revision and fingering by Giovanni Albini.

► Matteo Tundo, Inoltre (2022) for four ukuleles (gCEA). Duration:3’30. Dedicated to and revision by Giovanni Albini.

Matthew Quilliam, The Department for the End of the World (2021) for ukulele (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for Giovanni Albini at highSCORE Festival 2021. ALBUM

Sandro Montalto, Fibonacci Song (2022) for ukulele (gCEA). Duration: 5′. Dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

Oliver Dubon, Reality’s Edge: an Homage to Brendon Randall-Myers (2021) for ukulele (gCEA). Duration: 4′. Commissioned by Giovanni Albini. ALBUM

► Philip Ellis Foster, Cosmos 1 (2021) for ukulele. Duration: 5′. Written for Giovanni Albini at highSCORE Festival 2021. ALBUM

► Roberto Squillaci, Arpeggio (2020) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 4′. Written for, commissioned and revision and fingering by Giovanni Albini.

Samantha Muir, Lines of Flight 3: The Red Angel (2021) for ukulele solo (Low G) with scordatura (GB♭DB♭). Duration: 5′. Premiered by Giovanni Albini. VIDEO

Samantha Muir, Tell Me Why (A prayer for out time) (2021) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

► Sonia Ballarin, Recuerdos de El Nihuil (2021) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for, dedicated to, commissioned and revision and fingering by Giovanni Albini.

► Stefano Procaccioli, Percorso G – liens VII (2020) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for, dedicated to (and revision and fingering by) Giovanni Albini.

Steven Watson, Three Dances (2023) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 7′. Dedicated to (and revision and fingering by) Giovanni Albini.

Sydney Doemel, Green (2021) for ukulele (gCEA). Duration: 4′. Written for Giovanni Albini at highSCORE Festival 2021. ALBUM

Toivo Tulev, Synchronistic Afternoon With a Freshly Tuned Ukulele (2020) for ukulele solo (GCEA) and crystal glasses. Duration: 5′. Written for (and revision and fingering by) Giovanni Albini. Dedicated to Giovanni Albini and Liisa Hõbepappel. ALBUM

Tony Mizen, Homage to Leo Brouwer (2022) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 1’30”. Dedicated to Giovanni Albini.

Virginio Zoccatelli, Friend’s Hand (2020) for ukulele solo (GCEA). Duration: 3′. Written for, dedicated to, commissioned and revision and fingering by Giovanni Albini. VIDEO

Virginio Zoccatelli, Improvviso (2021) for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 4′. Written for, dedicated to, commissioned and revision and fingering by Giovanni Albini.

► Zulfiia Tursunova, Intention Sector 3012 (2021) for ukulele (gCEA). Duration: 6′. Written for and dedicated to Giovanni Albini at highSCORE Festival 2021. ALBUM

Ukulele original scores


► Giovanni Albini, Sabbia Op. 73 No. 2 (2021), from Mirabilia for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 3′. Dedicated to Luis Henriques and his cocolélé. VIDEO

► Giovanni Albini, Rosarium Op. 73 No. 3 (2021), from Mirabilia for ukulele solo with scordatura (FCEG). Duration: 3-10′. Dedicated to Choan Gálvez.

► Giovanni Albini, Hail to the Frightening E and B Sharp! Op. 73 No. 4 (2021), from Mirabilia for ukulele solo (gCEA). Duration: 1’30. Written for the London Ukulele Project.

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