The Italian conductor, Paolo Paroni, fraduated with the highest marks in Organ from the Conservatory of Udine, he perfected his skills under the guidance of eminent artistic personalities like Ton Koopman and Emilia Fadini while studying Choir conducting and Composition in the classes of Daniele Zanettovich. After successes in national competitions (first prize in the Organ Performance Competition in Noale, Venice; special jury prize as “best conductor in the competition”, Vittorio Veneto, Treviso; Premio Friuli composition prize, Udine; second prize for the “Salvatore Quasimodo” composition competition, Rome), he dedicated himself to orchestral conducting, studying first with Gilberto Serembe and then at the Vienna Academy (Hochschule fur Musik und Darstellende Kunst), receiving his first diploma with maximum marks and the distinction “Auszeichnung”, or “praise”.
Born with perfect pitch and possessor of a strong and refined musical personality, Paolo Paroni is equally at ease both interpreting a complex contemporary work and conducting a historically-informed performance of a baroque oratorio. He is also known for approaching romantic symphonic programs or taking part in “crossover” projects involving jazz or rock music; shaping the most subtle nuances of an orchestral performance or enjoying the beauty of the duduk's timbre or Moog synthesizer; he is convinced that the blurring of borders between musical genres is a necessary component in meeting the demands of the 21st century music lover. “…a learned and extremely musical conductor…” “…a true star of the international emerging music scene…”, “…a splendid young maestro, (…) who conducts with a very expressive technique and clear and stirring gestures…” These are only some of the praises that the international music critics have dedicated to Paolo Paroni, one of the most noted Friulan musicians of his time.
Paolo Paroni’s debut on the international circuit was on the podium of the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra of Ljubljana, where, in 1992, he started his career with a symphonic concert broadcast live by the national television. The flattering personal success caused him to be immediately invited to conduct diverse prestigious and internationally known symphonic orchestras, chamber orchestras and Baroque ensembles: he collaborated with the Philharmonic Orchestra of Zagreb, Sofia Festival Orchestra and Choir, Capella Savaria Baroque Orchestra, Orchestra and Choir of the theatre Verdi of Trieste, Festival of Sacred Music Orchestra of Budapest, Croatian Radio television Orchestra and Choir of Zagreb, Big Band and Choir of the Bulgarian National Radio, Solamente Naturali Baroque Orchestra of Bratislava, Chamber Orchestra of Debrecen, Symphony Orchestra of Friuli Venezia-Giulia, Slovenicum Chamber Ensemble of Ljubljana, Symphonic Orchestra of Sliven, Symphonic Orchestra of the Theatre of Sassari, Symphony Orchestra “Tito Schipa” of Lecce, Croatian Chamber Orchestra and many others. Paolo Paroni has performed at many important international festivals including the Zagreb Music Biennale, the Music Weeks of Sofia, Musica e Poesia a S. Maurizio in Milan, and has conducted in prominent venues such as Tonhalle Düsseldorf, Bulgaria Hall in Sofia, Lisinski Centar in Zagreb, Ljubljana Philharmonic Hall, Radiokuturhaus of Vienna, S. Maurizio of Milan, Philharmonic Theatre of Verona, and the Teatro Olimpico of Rome. Paroni has also recorded and performed in live national broadcasts for BNR (Bulgarian National Radio), RAI (Italian Radio-Television), ORF (Austrian Radio-Television), HRT (Croatian Radio-Television), Koper (Slovenian Radio-Television), and collaborated with internationally famous soloists such as violinist Stefan Milenkovich, singers Teresa Berganza, Daniela Mazzucato, Bonaldo Giaiotti, Max Renè Cosotti, Mária Zádori, organist Olivier Latry, and the Altenberg Trio Wien.
Paolo Paroni’s repertoire includes many of the most important symphonic works and concertos of the Romanticism and Late-Romanticism periods. His natural and spontaneous attraction towards this repertoire has been often praised by specialized critics who, writing about his interpretation of the eighth symphony of Dvorak, described him as“…brilliant baton […], Maestro Paroni conducts the orchestra with delicate dynamics and full robust orchestrations that cannot help but involve and impress the listener […] particularly impressive is the almost total agreement between the conductor and the orchestra, a peculiarity that transmits a sensation of passionate executive coherence capable of involvement and emotion […] ”.
His repertoire of Operas (for the Bongiovanni label, he was the first to record the opera of Paisiello, Lo Sposo Burlato), oratorios and sacred compositions is also very important: his repertoire includes L.v. Beethoven’s Missa Solemnis, Verdi’s Requiem, many sacred works of Mozart, Schubert and Haydn. His interpretation of Haydn’s Creation was greeted as “…a vivid performance, with audacious tempos […] aimed to highlight all the gems of Haydn’s orchestration […] a cultured and rigorous look at the antique style of the fugues, a histrionic impulsive gesture in the operatic sections […] The choir, right on form […] hand-led, incited and phrased by the expressive hand of the conductor […] Paolo Paroni has sustained over two hours of music with great personality […] “.
Paolo Paroni uses his studies in the field of Historically Informed Performance, to interpret the 17th century repertoire with the aid of original instruments. He has conducted many Baroque orchestras, and held for several years the position of Principal Guest Conductor of the baroque orchestra Capella Savaria. His repertoire includes some of J.S. Bach’s most important works, such as the major Passions (BWV 244, BWV 245), diverse Cantatas, the High Mass (BWV 232) and various instrumental compositions; George Frideric Handel’s Dixit Dominus, many Antonio Vivaldi works and various pieces by composers of the Baroque, Rococo and Neoclassic ages. In interpreting J.S. Bach’s St. Matthew Passion (BWV 244), Paroni has been described as “...cultured and always expressive; a thorough and accurate interpreter in the complex leading of the articulated parts and poetic in the work’s great dramaturgic rise. Paroni is able to create a continuous and mutual understanding between himself and the diversified orchestral settings. In a Passion soaked with symbols, musical descriptions and numeric enigmas, Paroni’s strong personality, in empathy with the choirs, the soloists and the orchestra, gives a fully convincing interpretationof the work [...] Supported by the skill of the choirs, soloists and orchestra, Paroni’s direction is both luminous and reflective; creating a concert which will remain in our memories for a long time [...] ”.
His modern and contemporary repertoire, which Paaolo Paroni interprets with sincere attention, is also vast and often incorporated in his programs. An example is his recent interpretation of Luciano Berio's Sinfonia for eight voices and orchestra, which established a productive collaboration with the world-renowned vocal group The Swingle Singers; or the live CD recording at the “Biennale of Contemporary Music” of Zagreb in which Paroni conducts the Croatian Radio television Orchestra and Chorus. The concert, which was broadcast live by the Croatian National Television, and the CD recording are dedicated to two composers of the new generation. Additionally, he has authored sound tracks for fiand shorts. Paolo Paroni dedicates himself to diverse projects of “contamination” between different musical genres. In this context, the collaboration with the Big Band and Choir of the National Radio of Sofia, with which he has recorded and performed – at the 40th edition of the Sofia Music Weeks International Festival - a program dedicated to classical music inspired by jazz, which was broadcast live by the national radio, is worth mentioning.
Paolo Paroni has also collaborated with many internationally famous artists such as Natalie Cole (conducting the symphonic portions of her concert in Milan, Piazza Duomo) and the jazz musician Kenny Wheeler, whose first performance of the Oratorio I Giorni Dell’Uomo for choir and orchestra was conducted by Paroni at the Teatro Comunale of Modena; other collaborations include Enrico Rava, GlaucoVenier, and many others.