Diamante Orchestra


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THE DIAMANTE ORCHESTRA Musicians Mary Beth Malek (clarinet), Paula Tuttle (cello), and Juan Jaramillo (violin) are joined by arranger Ralph Guzzi (trumpet), and rhythm players Kevin Clark, (piano), Brian Stahurski (bass), George Perilli (drums), and soprano Lilly Abreu for select performances. The Orchestra and Lilly together form a nimble ensemble that can play in any venue acoustically or amplified. In 2018 the ensemble performed at Fridays at the Frick for a free lawn concert in tandem with the art and movie presentations showcasing the great masters of France, and 2020 for The Show Must Go On Line in a livestream presentation that was taped on the grounds of the Frick Pittsburgh. Diamante Orchestra was featured at the 2019 Diamond Horseshoe Ball playing Latin American music, Classical selections and dance standards with a fifteen piece orchestra. Diamante plays a repertoire of Classical Crossover, Jazz, Latin and many styles.

Cellist PAULA TUTTLE, has traveled and performed throughout the United States, Europe and Asia as orchestral musician, soloist and chamber music artist. She performed as principal cello for the internationally renowned Spoleto Festival in Charleston, South Carolina, and the Festival of the Two Worlds in Spoleto, Italy. During three summers at the Acadamie Franco Americain in Vaison-la-Romaine, France, she presented numerous solo recitals and chamber music performances. An active soloist and recitalist in the Western Pennsylvania region, she performed as concerto soloist with University of Pittsburgh Orchestra, Pittsburgh Festival Orchestra, Slippery Rock Symphony, I Solisti di Oakland, Butler Symphon yand Edgewood Symphony. A member of the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet Orchestras, performing as assistant principal cello as well as principal cello, she also is the solo cellist for PBS's My Music Orchestra, has been part of the creation of many PBS specials and recorded with over 100 Rock, Pop, Soul and Disco stars. She teaches a large cello studio as she is on the faculty of University of Pittsburgh, Chatham University and Carnegie Mellon University. Ms. Tuttle studied at Eastman School of Music, Carnegie Mellon University and New England Conservatory. She and Mary Beth are also founding members of another chamber group called the Diamante Trio which performs an extensive repertoire of Latin American music. Both the Diamante and Zaffiro Trios have received support from the University of Pittsburgh for their projects bringing music to schools and community organizations.

MARY BETH MALEK, principal clarinetist for the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet Orchestra, former principal clarinet for Wheeling Symphony and Westmoreland Symphony, performs with Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera and Opera Theater of Pittsburgh's Summerfest. As a member of Renaissance City Winds, she performed extensively in the region and in Carnegie Hall in New York. In her role as principal clarinetist with Pittsburgh Opera since, she received special recognition from Luciano Pavarotti during his curtain calls of Tosca, and again from Lorin Maazel during his curtain calls of La Traviata. Mary Beth enjoys collaborating with local musicians and performing a wide range of musical styles from Classical to Jazz, Broadway and Klezmer. With Tom Roberts, (piano) they accompany the silent films of Charlie Chaplin with original music, performing in movie theaters and concert venues in the Pittsburgh area. A recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship, Mary Beth studied in Vienna, Austria after receiving her Masters Degree from the Eastman School of Music where she graduated with the Performer's Certificate Award. Mary Beth performed in Austria at the Graz Festival, toured Austria with a youth orchestra and presented solo recitals during her Fulbright residency. She joined the Heidelberg Festival in Germany for two summers. She previously earned her Bachelor's degree at Northwestern University. Mary Beth teaches clarinet at the University of Pittsburgh as well as Chatham University, and works with high school students in her home and during summer festivals. Each year PMEA State band selects several students from her home studio, as in 2016 five of her students were awarded the special honor of attending the PMEA State Band Festival.

Juan Jaramillo Since his arrival in the US from his native country of Venezuela, Juan Jaramillo has established himself as a prominent violinist in a variety of music scenes around the country. He is a product of the internationally famous "El Sistema" orchestra program that started in Venezuela. Mr. Jaramillo has played with many ensembles including the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, New World Symphony, Sarasota Orchestra, Sarasota Opera, Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble and many more. Juan has also performed as Acting Associate Concertmaster and Assistant Principal Second of the Britt Music Festival. Currently he is the Principal Second of the Wheeling Symphony and first violinist for the Pittsburgh Opera and Ballet Orchestras, as well as the Sarasota Opera Orchestra. Juan has also served as the Artist-in-Residence at St. Matthews Church in Wheeling, WV, as the coordinator and performer of the Chamber Music Project. Mr. Jaramillo has performed at summer festivals such as San Miguel de Allende Chamber Music Festival (Mexico), Latinoamerican Quartet Seminar (Venezuela), Deep Creek Summer Festival, Sunflower Music Festival, Britt Festival, and Des Moines Metro Opera. He received his Bachelor's Degree and Artist Diploma from Duqesne University and also earned a Master's Degree from Penn State University. When he is not performing, rehearsing, or teaching, Juan enjoys running, cooking, and the movies.

RALPH GUZZI, has worked nationally as composer, arranger, and recording session manager for commercial recording projects, albums, movie trailers and TV. As music director and arranger for TJL Productions/ PBS My Music series, from 2003 he has worked with the greatest pop, rock, and motown stars of our generation, from the Tramps, Aretha Franklin, Franki Valli and Ronnie Specter to Davy Jones and a hundred other acclaimed artists. In Pittsburgh, he is music director for Latshaw Pops Orchestra, The Skyliners, and Bo Wagner's Sinatra Show, and has arranged for Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, McKeesport Orchestra, Balcony Big Band and others. A frequent guest conductor for PMEA jazz festivals. he teaches commercial music arranging at California State University, and is the director of the University of Pittsburgh Jazz Ensemble.

KEVIN CLARK studied jazz arranging and pedagogy at Duquesne University and the University of Pittsburgh. As a composer and arranger, his works have been featured on PBS, various radio jingles, and the Project Bundle-Up Telethon on WTAE-TV, and have been performed for former vice-president Al Gore and former president George W. Bush by special invitation to the White House. He has collaborated with lyricists on at least seven musicals, including the Grove City tricentennial musical “On This Water,” the musical “Short Stuff,” which was performed at the CLO Cabaret, and the Tony Award-winning show “Ritual.” Dr. Clark’s compositions and arrangements have been performed nationwide by the World Civic Orchestra, McKeesport Symphony, Wheeling Symphony, Pittsburgh Philharmonic, Edgewood Symphony, Sacred Heart Choir, West Hills Symphonic Band, and numerous instrumental groups throughout the country. As a brass player and keyboardist, he is active in performing in every sort of venue from churches to military bases to football stadiums and teaching at local universities, having given master classes at Frostburg State University and Seton Hill University. His specialties include vocal music (classical through modern), sacred music, musical theater, jazz, pop, neobaroque, neoclassical, country, and even busker organ!

BRIAN STAHURSKI received his bachelor's degree in jazz performance and a master's degree in performance at Duquesne University. He performs in the Pittsburgh Cultural District with the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre Orchestra, Broadway Series and touring productions. A member of the Wheeling Symphony Orchestra, he plays both classical and jazz bass. He can be seen on WQED's Live from Studio A on PBS television and in live performances with various Jazz, Blues, Salsa, Pop and Rock events. Brian toured with jazz trumpet legend Maynard Ferguson and his Big Bop Nouveau band throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia from 1999-2001 playing jazz festivals, clubs and universities. His discography includes two notable recordings on the Concord Jazz label: Big City Rhythms with Michael Feinstein and Maynard Ferguson; and Swingin' for Schuur with Diane Schuur and Maynard Ferguson. He is a bass instructor at California University of Pennsylvania, Slippery Rock University, and Duquesne University.

GEORGE PERILLI is a world-renowned drum set artist who has written and recorded, with many groundbreaking artists including John Tesh and Michael McDonald. From 1983 until 1998 he performed world wide with Michael McDonald, of Doobie Brothers fame, and then joined country star Reba McEntire. He also performed with disco queen Donna Summer, including her 2010 show in Beijing, China. He appeared over a dozen times on NBC’s The Tonight Show, with various acts like Gary Lewis & the Playboys and Boz Scaggs and Peter Cetera of the band Chicago. Perilli’s professional drumming career began with a ’70s TV variety show The Hudson Brothers Razzle Dazzle Show, followed by a move to Las Vegas to drum for Lola Falana. Before moving back to Pittsburgh in 2012 he was based in Nashville performing with various artists, in addition to his tenure in Reba McEntire's band.

LILLY ABREU is one of Brazil's greatest cultural assets, a versatile artist with numerous appearances as a recitalist and soloist with orchestras and chamber ensembles in France, Spain, Portugal, Argentina, United States and Brazil. Lilly Abreu performed for Brazil's First Lady, Ruth Cardoso in Pittsburgh. A winner of the Pittsburgh Concert Society and a guest on the Chamber Music Concert Series, she sang the Bachianas Brasileiras no.5 with cellists of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Ms. Abreu sang Bach's Wedding Cantata with the Culver City Chamber Orchestra in Hollywood and Culver City, California and appeared as a guest soloist in the "Strings in the Mountains" Festival in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. Ms. Abreu has been on the roster of the Pittsburgh Opera for many years, singing in operas such as Carmen and Turandot. In addition to her classical engagements, Ms. Abreu is also an accomplished popular music artist, performing regularly some of the greatest tunes of the Brazilian repertoire, as well as Broadway and Jazz standards. She has released a CD entitled BRASILEIRA where she performs Brazilian Jazz, and has recently released BOSSA, a CD of Brazilian popular songs with the Grammy winner string quartet Cuarteto Latinoamericano. Ms. Lilly Abreu teaches Voice at Carnegie Mellon University.

Diamante Orchestra recordings

Rewrite the Stars

Uptown Concerto

Lullaby of the Leaves

Bye-Bye Blackbird

Diamante performs at the Summer Fridays at the Frick

Manha de Carnival

Besame Mucho

No More Blues

La Bamba

Satin Doll

Don't Get Around Much Anymore

In the studio with members of the Diamante Orchestra

Diamante Orchestra

Meet our arranger, Ralph Guzzi

Diamante Orchestra

Diamante performs at the Diamond Horseshoe Ball

Diamante Orchestra

Lilly sings the music of Jobim while recording the CD No More Blues

Diamante Orchestra