Emmanuele Lo Russo was born in Vieste in 1989 into a family marked by the fact of music. Already these elementary biographical data are sufficient to indicate personality development and life orientation. Music will stay with him like an enveloping sea wind, a common destiny of which he becomes the interpreter and point of synthesis. To have the violin in one’s hands at the age of play, not yet six years old, and to be introduced to it by a passionate teacher like Eddy Perpich is to be led early on to a new semantics to be exercised alongside the everyday common word. If then this new language is reinforced by dad Michele clarinetist and choir director, mom Cecilia pianist pupil of maestro Lucia Passaglia, violinist brothers Antonio and and Bernadette and cellist Raffaele, one can understand how music becomes, in the Lo Russo household, a true family lexicon.

I think there arises then, in the first steps of this child, the kind of transfiguration that leads to reify in music a fact, to find notes to say and represent oneself as we find the words and phrases for the daily narrative.

Imagine this disproportionate teenager, finally arrived at the height of a good basketball player, with a violin that will appear smaller and smaller in his huge hands, narrating his inner experiences, his desire to know the world and what it contains, to translate his feeling of reality. It is a path that is pointed out to him and that he travels burning through the stages because the ground is undoubtedly paved -though within the sacrifice of renunciation that lingers- by a musical culture of an unrepeatable family.

Intense summers, there in the Perpich castle in Fontecchio, far from home but within this search for meaning that only authentic masters of international renown can bestow. And Ms. Lucia, a sublime pianist who infects you even as she teaches you the flavors of a good Florentine steak, so that beauty and taste interpenetrate.

How many summers like that, Emmanuel, inside the training of a demanding teacher, your godfather, who is not afraid to tell you in his unmistakable baritone voice, also an instrument, whether your proof is acceptable or even sublime because he knew, even if he did not tell you openly , ‘of never having had a pupil so‘.

The sea of Vieste, always in the backdrop of home draws you in and entangles you takes you elsewhere in its billows and then keeps you coming back, always. And then again there is certainly also soccer, the passion of all Lo Russo and Cecilia your mother should have bought plenty, lecterns and balls, because these are the items that are too easily lost on those battlefields…

He had begun to play the violin from an early age, with the wisdom of infants that takes over when that of the learned is over, sensing the promise of that instrument: of something better, stronger, truer, a longing for the absolute that is there to come. And she had precisely chosen him as her chosen, loving and compassionate instrument…

It is a very long ladder of masters, like Jacob’s. After Perpich, when one could by now be living off the land, appears in Emmanuel’s eyes, Hagai Shaham, one whose soul inhabits the violin. It’s just a matter of, after viewing it and grasping its absolute excellence, scouting it out and following it, even if it’s the ends of the earth. Initially it is his sister Bernadette, a great violinist in the sight of God, who seeks out this teacher for herself in Tel Aviv, but Emmanuel accompanying her is so absolutely captivated by her that he takes up the violin again. And so he resumes this adventure of music, a path of life, that shapes Lo Russo’s score allowing him to write persistent musical notes, mnestic traces that are communicated from soul to soul, a sign that while revealing at the same time veils, like the Veiled Christ in the Sansevero Chapel in Naples.

It is from this moved awareness of the sign that some short and intense compositions, almost like medieval lauds, are born.

Herein lies a familiar gift, a genuine surprise, which allows Emmanuel to hear, performed by a real orchestra, his music hitherto heard only in the intimacy of his heart and who knows perhaps dreamed of. Legend has it that his brother Gabriel put together the most friendly orchestral players, those willing to come from any distance for the event: maestro Lo Russo’s first conducting of his compositions for symphony orchestra and opera chorus!

And also involved in this supreme adventure is his wife, pianist and soprano Barbara Carrer. And that music holds captivated hundreds of spectators at the Teatro San Giuseppe in Turin, in the Cathedral of Chioggia, At the Eden Theater in Treviso, thousands at the Rimini Meeting… People sense in this sound of the soul, in these vibrations-whispers of the heart-a powerful reference to destiny. It’s like helping a people come to agreement by saying it’s possible to return to the humility of listening… Learning is never finished, at this level, and teachers you meet, you providentially stumble upon, they stay, they leave their mark, they provoke yours. And this is where a Maestro fits in again , the conductor par excellence, Donato Renzetti, one who even though he is huge leaves you the space for your effective gesture, your humble fiat, to happen… And Emmanuele Lo Russo says this.

This young conductor, with a most evident elegance, extols himself even without a box, and if he just spreads his arms, he encloses a whole mystical gulf within, as if to understand every person he plays to make them feel that they are the protagonists of an unparalleled fact, as every musical performance is. It is indeed Emmanuel’s wingspan that could cause him to take flight from his podium at any moment, as he did as a child when he empathized with a heavenly conductor angel. Or perhaps it is anticipation of the ancient act of diving, repeated so many times from the rocks of that Cove of Fields where the blue of the sky and the deep blue of the sea overturn and merge together in the final dive…
Piergiorgio Bighin