Ars Cantus is a non-profit making cultural association which was founded on 10th December, 1987, in Varese, Italy, with the aim “of developing and spreading interest in and enthusiasm for classical music, in particular Italian and sacred music, with special emphasis on the artistic and musical education of schoolchildren and young members of the public. In order to achieve these aims, the association co-operates in all possible ways both with public institutions and with those of the dioceses. The Association puts its philosophy into action through its Chorus and Orchestra, both of which are made up principally by young people, with performances, geared to the tastes of a youthful public, and by providing technical competence, whenever requested, with particular consideration for all other Choruses operating in the area” (extract form Article 3 of the Statute). A fundamentally important characteristic of the Chorus and Orchestra Ars Cantus is the spirit of co-operation, whereby enthusiasm and love of musical performance is made clearly evident to the audience. At present, the association includes about 200 members in the following categories: The Children’s Chorus – around 20 children and teenagers, aged from 7 to 16 years old, coming from the Provinces of Varese and Como; The Symphonic Chorus – around 90 adults, coming from the Provinces of Varese, Milan and Como; The symphony Orchestra – more than 90 Musicians, working also with other Italian and foreign Orchestras, coming from the Provinces of Varese, Milan, Como, Lecco, Bergamo, Lodi, Pavia, Piacenza and Verbania, but also, in recent years, from Albania, Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Ecuador, France, Germany, Japan, Israel, Lithuania, Romania, Russia, Syria, Spain, Switzerland and Hungary, all resident in Italy.
Over the last 30 years, the Chorus and Orchestra Ars Cantus have given 650 Concerts in Italy and Switzerland, and have made recordings for RAI – the Italian State broadcasting authority, as well as many other TV and Radio Stations. Ars Cantus has attracted large audiences everywhere and has been greeted with enthusiasm by both the general public and critics, so that it is regularly invited to perform by many civic authorities and organizations. In particular,
on 21st September 1997 the Chorus and Orchestra was asked to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the foundation of the Varese Province, for which they performed Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and Bruckner’s Te Deum in the Basilica of San Vittore.
For the Great Jubilee of 2000, the Vatican Commission invited Ars Cantus to give two of the 57 official Concerts (Concerts 22 and 23); These Concerts took place on 13th May in the Church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, for the 80th birthday of Pope John Paul II, and on 14th May in the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore for World Vocations Day, which was also broadcast by RAI Sat.
In May 2003, Ars Cantus had the honour of being the first Italian symphonic group to perform in the Cathedral of Nôtre Dame in Geneva, with the Stabat Mater by Poulenc, and in the Church of Belfaux in Freiburg, with Verdi’s Requiem, both of which were received with great ovations.
In November 2004, the Association participated in a historic event, supported by many prestigious Italian and Russian bodies, the exchange of Conductors with the Volgograd (ex Stalingrad) Philharmonic Orchestra in Russia: • Edward Serov, “The People’s Artist” from Russia, one of the most prominent Russian Conductors in modern times, came to Italy to conduct Ars Cantus in two memorably exciting Concerts; • Giovanni Tenti went to Volgograd to conduct the Philharmonic Orchestra, where he has been much appreciated for his likeably plucky drive combined with his appealingly sensitive interpretation.
On 29th October 2005, the Chorus and Orchestra Ars Cantus was invited to give the Grand Inaugural Concert for the New Cathedral in Brescia, after its restoration. The Concert, which was televised live, consisted of a highly successful performance of Beethoven’s Eroica Symphony and Verdi’s Te Deum, in front of the civic and provincial authorities and an audience of about 3.000 people. In 2007, to mark the 20th Anniversary of its Foundation, Ars Cantus received two very special recognitions. On 7th July, the famous Aeronautical Firm Aer Macchi (now Leonardo), for the first time in its 100-year history, opened its gates to a Symphony Concert: Ars Cantus “enters a Factory”. These two Organizations, both excellent in their own particular fields and conscious of having their roots in the same place (Venegono, in the Varese Province) came together in a special partnership which revealed • the connection between these “two worlds” of Symphonic Music and High Technology, “capable of channelling the excellence of individuals into the achievement of great collective results” (from the Preface to the Concert Programme, produced by the Chief Executive Officer of AleniaAermacchi, Engineer Carmelo Cosentino); • that the resonance given by the voice of Music to the roar of aeroplanes “is a powerful and harmonious confirmation of the creativity of Italian genius” (Ibidem).
On 8th July, the Municipal Administration of Varese invited Ars Cantus to give a Concert in the Estensi Gardens in honour of the town – the first time a Symphony Concert has ever been performed in front of the Great Fountain of the Public Gardens.
In July 2009 Ars Cantus will be in Vienna, one of the very few Italian groups to be invited there. Two Concerts will take place: the first on Saturday 4th at 16.00 in the famous Golden Hall of the Musikverein, considered the Mount Olympus of Music, from where the renowned New Year’s Concert is broadcast all over the world. The programme will include Symphonies and Choruses from works by Rossini and Verdi, as well as Great Soundtracks from Films; the second Concert will be given on Sunday 5th at 19.30 in the Minoritenkirche, Church of the Little Brothers, one of the most imposing gothic buildings in the Centre of Vienna, with a performance of Puccini’s Gloria Mass and other pieces.
At the beginning of 2010, Ars Cantus has received two prestigious recognitions: in January has been appointed Testimonial of Varese province; in February the Tradate Rotary Club has given Maestro Tenti the Profession Award, the club gives every year to somebody who rises society thanks to his/her personal professional capability.
In July 2013 the group was warmly welcomed in Strasbourg for the first historical performance of “The Bells of Strasbourg Cathedral” by F. Liszt in the Cathedral, and a second ecumenical concert, in the Protestant Church of S.Paul.
October 2015 Ars Cantus takes an unexpected success, convincing the experienced and demanding public of the prestigious “Musical Evenings of Milan“, who call -for its “Season of A Series” – Ars Cantus to replace, at the last moment, the Budapest Symphony Orchestra, forced to give up for major cause.
In July 2015 and 2016 shows its particular efficacy in outdoor concerts, performing in front of an enthusiastic international audience, in the great courtyard of the Castello Sforzesco in Milan, as part of Expo City.
Maestro GIOVANNI TENTI
Giovanni Tenti born in 1961, passed the Italian state high school examination in Classical Literature in 1980; having enrolled in the Giuseppe Verdi Conservatory in Milan, he received the diploma in Pianoforte in 1981 while studying under professor Cesare Castellani and Professor Ugo Amadei; in 1986 he received the diploma in Organ and Composition for Organ, while studying with Professor Gianfranco Spinelli, Maria Cecilia Farina, Claudio Riva and Luigi Bendetti, as well as the diploma in Choral Music and Choral Conducting with professor Franco Monego; in 1989 he received the diploma in Composition with Professor Angelo Bellisario. He has also studied Orchestral Conducting with Professor Leonardo Taschera, Gabriele Bellini and Gianpiero Taverna.