NIAF Supports Maestro Gianandrea Noseda and the National Symphony Orchestra with $10,000 Grant


Natalie Wulderk

For Concert Series Celebrating 160 Years of U.S.-Italy Bilateral Relations

(Washington, D.C. – May 24, 2021) The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is pleased to announce that it has donated $10,000 to support Maestro Gianandrea Noseda and the National Symphony Orchestra’s Celebrating 160 Years of Bilateral Relations between Italy and the United States, a special virtual concert featuring repertoire by Italian and American composers to commemorate the historic anniversary.

“We are honored that this virtual concert presented by the National Symphony Orchestra aligns with NIAF’s mission to empower and strengthen ties between the United States and Italy,” said NIAF Chairman Robert E. Carlucci. “On behalf of the Foundation, I am happy that we could financially support Maestro Noseda’s artistic vision as well as partner with one of our nation’s most important cultural institutions, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.”

This concert was among the first performed by the National Symphony Orchestra (NSO) and its Music Director and Italian conductor Maestro Gianandrea Noseda since the Kennedy Center closed in March 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and marks an important milestone in a return to the stage.

Since joining the NSO in 2017, Maestro Noseda has often incorporated repertoire and programming to celebrate his heritage and the contributions of Italians and Italian Americans on American culture. Accordingly, this special concert comprises repertoire selected specifically for the occasion: Bruno Maderna’s Music of Gaiety; Aaron Copland’s Quiet City; Igor Stravinsky’s Concerto in E-flat major for Chamber Orchestra, Dumbarton Oaks; Ottorino Respighi’s Antiche Danze ed Arie Suite No. 3; and Giuseppe Verdi’s String Quartet (for string orchestra) – movement 1.

The concert highlights, through music, how Italian culture and Italian Americans have influenced classical music. The concert offers a rare opportunity to hear legendary Italian opera composer Giuseppe Verdi’s only string quartet in an arrangement for string orchestra. It also introduces many Americans to Italian-born Bruno Maderna who had a brilliant career as a conductor and composer of postwar modernist music. His Music of Gaiety has been likened to Respighi’s Antiche Danze ed Arie Suite No. 3, also a piece in the program. Both works shine a 20th-century light on music from the 17th century. Copland’s Quiet City is an ode to New York City, which is home to many Italian Americans whose families came to New York, stayed, and enriched the city with their culture.

“On behalf of NIAF, we offer our congratulations to Maestro Noseda for leading this virtual concert in celebration of this monumental anniversary. His important leadership expands the public’s appreciation of the pivotal relationship between the United States and Italy,” said NIAF President Robert V. Allegrini.

As in-person concerts are still on pause for health and safety precautions during the Covid-19 pandemic, the series was recorded in March and is available digitally on the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and NSO’s premium digital content platform, Digital Stage+, throughout the year.

In addition, the NSO hosted a special virtual event to coincide with the anniversary date of bilateral relations and to launch the concert series on April 15. Ambassador of Italy to the United States Armando Varricchio, Maestro Noseda, along with NSO and Kennedy Center leadership, contributed special celebratory messages for the occasion. The recording of the concert is available on Digital Stage+, and is available to the public via NSO’s Facebook and YouTube as of April 30.

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to preserving, promoting, and protecting the Italian American heritage and culture. To learn more about the Foundation and become a member, please visit