MARSHFIELD – During college, Emiliano Loconsolo often went from Boston to Rockland, where he would clean cages, feed parrots and sing to the birds. The Italian jazz and classical singer volunteered regularly at Foster Parrots, a rescue and adoption center and sanctuary. On Sunday, Loconsolo, a recent graduate of the New England Conservatory, will visit the South Shore to perform during a jazz brunch at Jamie’s in Marshfield. He will sing 16th century Italian Villanellas, baroque arias and contemporary American Jazz.
“It’s fascinating how easily you can connect with them. It’s very easy to create parallels,” said Loconsolo, 32, who lives in Providence. “What I’m trying to do now is more of a contemporary work with this material, trying to arrange them in a more jazzy way.”
Loconsolo moved to the United States from Pisa, Italy, four years ago, after receiving a scholarship from Berklee College of Music. He gave up an established career in Italy as a singer and organizer of CantinaJazz, interactive wine and Jazz concerts in Tuscany. So she could pay his living expenses in Boston, Loconsolo’s mother sold her home and many of her possessions and moved in with her mother. “This school thing, on one hand, was a big opportunity. On the other hand, it meant to freeze all my projects,”
Loconsolo said he started volunteering at Foster Parrots during school, about three years ago, after finding the organization on the internet. He had grown up in a home with birds and thought he could be a valuable volunteer. As a child, he would listen to and record songbirds. In a way, this fostered his desire to sing, he said. Loconsolo started singing popular music at 15 and learned Jazz a few years later. After two years at Berklee, he moved to the New England Conservatory to join its Jazz program and work on his classical voice technique.. He graduated in may and now lives – with five birds – in Providence.
He is developing his CantinaJazz program for an American audience and studying Italian Villanellas and the works of Roberto Murolo, son of the great 18th-century Neapolitan poet Ernesto Murolo, who died in 2003 at the age of 91. His goal is to set these to more contemporary arrangements, using drums, bass and guitar rather than lute. “I din’t grow up in a Jazz environment. My roots are linked to the old Italian music,” he said. “Initially, I tried to perform them in a historical way using my countertenor register. At some point, I said to myself that I’m not really an early music singer… What would be more singere for me to do would be to combine them with my background which is being a Jazz singer.”
Loconsolo has performed at Scullers, the Harvard Faculty Club, the Hyatt Regency Hotel, Jordan Hall and the Berklee Performance Center.
He performed at Foster Parrots’ annual fundraising gala in October in Malden, and on Wednesday he returned to Foster parrots to volunteer for the first time in a few months. There, as he sang to the parrots, the others quieted down. One flew onto his shoulder. “I hope that one day I’ll be able to have my career at the point where I can do something for the shelters and the environment,” he said. In the meantime he’s excited that he can combine his passions at Jamie’s this weekend. “I’m excited that a lot of people from the shelter are going to come see.”
Sydney Schwartz, The Patriot Ledger (USA), January 19, 2007