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Bruce Dickey

Ph credits Alejandro Gomez

Where were you born?

In South Bend, Indiana, just east of Chicago.

Where do you live?

Outside of Bologna, Italy

Why did you start playing music?

It was a natural evolution of growing up in a family of band musicians. My father and two uncles were school band directors.

What is your favourite instrument?

That is a difficult question. I suppose I should say cornetto, but only together with other instruments (such as historical organs) but especially the human voice.     

What music did you listen to as a child?   

Some pop music of the 1950s (mostly awful) and classical recordings, Tchaikovsky, Wagner, Smetana, Dvorak, as well as trumpet music (Rafael Mendez, Doc Severinson, and later Adolf Herseth with the Chicago Symphony playing Mahler and much more.   

What was your first record?

Probably the Chipmunks !

What musical period would you like to live in?       

I think, honestly, in the present, but I would love to hear 20 minutes of music making in San Marco at the time of Giovanni Gabrieli !    

Where do you prefer to listen to music?  

When traveling or on a comfortable chair with headphones.

Where can we find you when you are not making music?

In the kitchen.

Where did you study?

At Michigan State University (humanities), Indiana University (musicology) and briefly at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis.

What awards have you received?      

The Christopher Monk award of the Historic Brass Society, and many CD awards including several Diapason d’or and many times 5 diapasons. I am proudest of my first solo CD (Quel lascivissimo cornetto for Accent) being chosen by Diapason as one of the 100 most influential recordings of Baroque Music of the 20th century.  

Who is your favourite composer?

Giovanni Gabrieli, JS Bach, Schütz

Which composer would you like the public to rediscover?

Annibale Perini, Lambert de Sayve

What is your first recording?

Cavalieri, Rappresentazione di anima e di corpo for Reflexe (ca. 1977) with Hans-Martin Linde and many present and future stars of the time (Jordi Savall, Nigel Rogers, Andrea van Ramm, Ian Partidge…)

What is your favourite recording? (Passacaglia, with you)      

La bella minuta (also the first one) 

Who do you dream of recording with? (realistic or not)  

I am happy with those I currently record with. No further dreams like that !        

What do you do before a concert?      


What do you do after a concert?    

Eat, drink and be merry     

What would you do if you were not a musician?   

            No idea      

Anything else to add

I would just like to say, as this did not come out in the questions above, that I am very much interested in furthering the cornetto as an instrument for contemporary music by composers who understand the historical function and use of the instrument and its vocality. I am grateful to Passacaille for giving me the opportunity on all four of my last CDs to include newly commissioned works, all of which I love.