Born in Brazil, Monica Tessitore began her musical career in the small town of Campo Belo, Minas Gerais. At age nine, she was invited to perform on a popular late TV show in São Paulo, Chopin’s Waltz Opus 70 no.1, at 2:00 AM, to everyone’s astonishment and achieving great success. After moving to Rio de Janeiro, she studied piano at the Pro-Arte Seminários de Música with the well-known Brazilian pianist Homero Magalhães. Several years later she and her family moved to the capital, Brasilia, where she attended Escola de Música de Brasilia(EMB). In Brasilia, she continued her musical education with pianist Maria Apparecida Prista Tavares, a graduate of the Eastman School of Music.
These formative years at the EMB were also important in Ms. Tessitore’s training as a chamber musician: coaching with musicians such as Antonio Guerra Vicente (cellist), Ludmila Vinecka (violinist) and Odette Ernst Dias (flautist); winning two chamber music competitions at the University of Brasilia (UnB); performing with the Orquestra da Escola de Música de Brasilia under Wolfgang Groth; and performing in master classes for the famous Magdalena Tagliaferro and Miriam Daulsberg. In Brasilia, she won first prizes at the Octavio Maul Piano Competitionand the Lorenzo Fernandez Piano Competition.
Ms. Tessitore passed the exams for the Universidade de Brasilia and attended one semester before her acceptance at the University of Hartford in 1979. As a student of Luiz Carlos de Moura Castro at the Hartt School of Music, she was granted the Alfred C. Fuller Scholarship. While at Hartt School, she performed with the Emerson String Quartet and the Hartt Symphony Orchestra under the direction of the French conductor Charles Bruch. She graduated cum laude in 1983.
Winning the scholarship from the Brazilian government (CAPES) for both her graduate and post-graduate studies, Ms. Tessitore attended the New England Conservatory of Music (MM’85) and Boston University (DMA’94) in the class of Veronica Jochum and Tong Il-Han. She has also performed with the Orquestra Sinfônica de Brasilia with composer and conductor Cláudio Santoro and she appeared with the Orchestra de L’Empodá with conductor Charles Coll in Spain (Girona).
As a chamber musician, Ms. Tessitore attended the Taos Summer School of Music with the American String Quartet and Raymond Hanson. She has collaborated with cellists Peter Stumpf, Sergey Antonov; flautists Odette Ernst Dias, Beatriz Magalhães Castro; and with the Walden Chamber Players; and with the Quarteto de Brasilia.
Her international appearances include solo recitals and with orchestras in South Korea at the Ton-Il Han International Summer Festival, at the Farra d’Isonzo International Piano Festival, at the SIPO (Semana Internacional de Piano Óbidos) in Portugal, and at the International Summer Piano Festival in Spain (Girona). She has performed for artists such as Victor Rosembaun, Leonard Shure, Russell Sherman, Boris Berman and Paul Badura-Skoda.
For several years she was the co-founder and artistic director of the Indian Hill Chamber Players, performing several concerts each year with the group, which included Julia Cash (violin), Erin Yeaman (cello), Lynn Basila (violin) and Rebecca Strauss (viola). An active teacher, soloist, and chamber musician, Ms. Tessitore has performed recitals at Lawrence Academy, Dartmouth College, Indian Hill Music, the Parish Center for the Arts, and Cushing Academy. Most recently she has performed with the Orchestra of Indian Hill with Bruce Hangen conducting.
Sponsored by Certisign of Brazil, Ms. Tessitre recorded the CD (GLB label) titled “Piano” with music of Liszt, Schumann, L. Fernandez and O. Maul; and “Momentos Musicais” (Bostonia label) with all-Schubert compositions featuring cellist Sergey Antonov and pianist Ellina Blinder. She continues to travel to Brazil playing solo and chamber music concerts, and teaching master classes. She has performed and taught master classes at the Conservatório de Música de Sergipein Aracaju. At the Universidade Estadual de Minas Geraisin Belo Horizonte, she gave a solo recital at the Assembléia Legislativa de Minas Gerais in the series Segunda Musical, a concert that was recorded and broadcasted on TV. In Rio de Janeiro, she frequently plays at the concert series Música no Museu, and has performed at the Museu de Arte Moderna, Centro Cultural do Banco do Brasil, Museu da República, and Palácio São Clemente. In Brasilia, she’s been an artist performer at the concert series Sextas Musicaisat Casa Thomas Jefferson and recently appeared with the members of the Brasilia String Quartet in a performance of Henrique Oswaldo’s Piano Quartet.
Ms. Tessitore is currently on the piano faculty at Indian Hill Music School, Assumption College, and Cushing Academy (since 2008). She is an advocate for music education and the lifetime benefits that it promotes to both students and society.