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Tony Martucci

Adjunct Professor of Jazz Drum Set, Small Jazz Ensemble

Tony Martucci is an adjunct professor of drums at VCU, where he teaches private drum set lessons, Jazz Percussion Ensemble and Small Jazz Ensemble, as well as tours with VCU’s Mary Morton Parsons Jazz Masters, a faculty ensemble that presents solo and group sessions at schools throughout Richmond and beyond to acquaint children with jazz, funded by a permanent endowment donated by patrons of jazz through a challenge grant from the Mary Morton Parsons Foundation.

Martucci was one of the founding members of the Russian-American joint venture jazz group Partners In Time, formerly known as Jazznost, that included Sergei Gurbeloshvili (tenor sax), Louis Scherr (piano) and Victor Dvoskin (bass) and toured both countries extensively from 1991-93. The group’s first CD, “Joint Venture,” was released on Timeless Records and received four stars from DownBeat. These musicians — joined by Gary Burton (vibes), Ryan Kisor (trumpet), Don Alias (percussion), Igor Butman (sax), Paul Bollenback (guitar) and Ken Willaman (cello) — then came together to record again as Partners in Time, resulting in the chart-climbing CD release, “Equinost” (Intersound).

Martucci also formed a trio with fellow Washingtonians pianist Louis Scherr and bassist Tommy Cecil. The trio has delighted audiences at concerts and festivals on four continents, including performances at the Monterey Jazz Festival and the North Sea Jazz Festival. Their recording, “Warm Valley,” featuring tenor sax great Joe Henderson, was awarded four stars by DownBeat. Martucci is also known as a leader of his own ensembles and in 1990 released his first recording, “Earth Tones” (Sound Judgment), which was included in the top-ten favorite recordings of 1990 by the critics of JazzTimes. In 1994, Martucci followed that release with “Collage.” His international appearances also include such festivals as the Tallinn (Estonia), Helsinki (Finland), Vancouver (Canada) and San Remo (Italy) jazz festivals, while his regional concerts include engagements at The Smithsonian Institute, Blues Alley, The Kennedy Center, Wolf Trap and Carnegie Hall.

An active teacher for more than 25 years, Martucci has shared his knowledge and experience with hundreds of students ranging from beginners to professionals. He is currently on the faculty of Maryland Summer Jazz and was formerly on the faculty of the University of Maryland and the College of William and Mary. Alumni of his teaching studio are active in performing, publishing, video and recording production, radio and concert promotion. He has presented drum master classes at a variety of universities and at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention. His own teachers have included drummers Edward Manganelli, Bob Moses, Billy Hart, Joe LaBarbera and Allen Dawson; conga players Giovanni Hidalgo and Sam Turner; and tabla artist Broto Roy.

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